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Interim Guidance on Infection Control Measures for 2009 H1N1 Influenza in Healthcare Settings, Including Protection of Healthcare Personnel
October 14, 2009, 2:00 PM ET
Symptoms of Influenza and Viral Shedding
The symptoms of influenza, including 2009 H1N1 influenza, can include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills, fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting. Depending on the case series, the proportion of persons who have laboratory confirmed 2009 H1N1 infection and do not have fever can range from about 10 to 50%.
2009 H1N1 influenza virus appears to be transmitted from person to person through close contact in ways similar to other influenza viruses. Although the relative contribution of each mode is uncertain
, influenza virus can potentially be transmitted through:
Droplet exposure of mucosal surfaces (e.g., nose, mouth, and eyes) by respiratory secretions from coughing or sneezing;
Contact, usually of hands, with an infectious patient or fomite (a surface that is contaminated with secretions) followed by self-inoculation of virus onto mucosal surfaces such as those of the nose, mouth, and eyes; and
Small particle aerosols in the vicinity of the infectious individual.
Transmission of influenza through the air over longer distances, such as from one patient room to another, is thought not to occur.
All respiratory secretions and bodily fluids, including diarrheal stools, of patients with 2009 H1N1 influenza are considered to be potentially infectious.
Respiratory Protection –
Recommendation: CDC continues to recommend the use of respiratory protection that is at least as protective as a fit-tested disposable N95 respirator for healthcare personnel who are in close contact with patients with suspected or confirmed 2009 H1N1 influenza.
This recommendation applies uniquely to the special circumstances of the current 2009 H1N1 pandemic during the fall and winter of 2009-2010 and CDC will continue to revisit its guidance as new information becomes available, within this season if necessary