WHO raises swine flu pandemic alert to phase 5 - page 3

Do not panic, but the WHO has just raised the Pandemic Threat Level to Phase 5. I would suggest that you do some prepping if you have not done so. Be calm, and be practical. What does your family... Read More

  1. by   TuTonka
    CNN has just announced that the Swine flu is now a global emergency and it is being considered to close the USA Boarders. the vaccine will not be available fopr two months.
  2. by   RedWeasel
    It has been written that the previous March and April prior to the fall of 1918 had a flu outbreak (remember flu mos are usually over in feb etc.-and this is similar now-March and April) It was not a bad flu season then, but come fall it was deadly. Of course now we are better able to treat the symptoms. However, it was an H1N1 so I am not taking anything for granted. Not scared, but not dumb either. Maybe a little scared. ...check out the wikipedia site for 1918 pandemic. It is fascinating.
  3. by   Spidey's mom
    Quote from canoehead
    It's the FLU. It happens every year. Every year it's a different strain. We didn't predict this strain because Mother Nature got one up on us. It's not deadlier or more virulent, it's just the FLU, like always.

    So we didn't predict H1N1 coming around right now, there was a time not too long ago that we didn't have vaccines for flu at all, and mankind survived. People are stockpiling groceries and water, but the world will not shut down.

    Remember that people are making money off flu now, so it's in their best interest to scare you silly. That's all I'm saying.

    Thank you! I'm reading this thread and shaking my head. I thought I was all alone.

    Whew - glad to know I'm not.

  4. by   Multicollinearity
    BUT - this flu killed young healthy people in their 20s and 30s in Mexico City. According to some news reports, some young healthy hospital workers died.

    That IS cause for significant concern. Also, any time a new strain breaks out, it is cause for concern.
  5. by   Spidey's mom
    Quote from multicollinearity
    BUT - this flu killed young healthy people in their 20s and 30s in Mexico City. According to some news reports, some young healthy hospital workers died.

    That IS cause for significant concern. Also, any time a new strain breaks out, it is cause for concern.
    Concern - yes. Hysteria - no.

    Balance is the key.

  6. by   indigo girl
    I do not believe that we are seeing much in the way of hysteria on these threads. We are however, seeing the concerned interest of professionals. The WHO has never before raised its Pandemic Threat levels to 4 or 5. These threat levels are a relatively new warning system, and that in itself is an education about how the global health care system is working. This is fascinating for some of us, and it's history in the making.

    We are, after all, watching the onfolding of a unique event because this is the very first time ever that the global society as a whole is awake and aware to the fact that we are approaching a pandemic situation.

    Sure, we are all aware that the majority of cases have been mild outside of Mexico. Will this trend continue? That is a big unknown at this point with a novel virus that is mutating quickly as all influenza viruses do, and as such we do not know what it is capable of doing. We do know some of what it has done, though, and it is unusual to hear of people in their twenties and thirties dying of influenza. There is an historical precedent for this that cannot be ignored.

    Yes, much to the despair of public health advocates, most of us do shrug off the seasonal flu because we know that it happens every fall/winter, year in and year out, very predictably. This is not that animal, and it is not fall or winter. It's May, and the cases are continuing. This is a completely new and unpredictable situation, and as such it does merit our concern.
    Last edit by indigo girl on May 4, '09
  7. by   indigo girl
    The CDC's Conference for Sunday, 2 May 2009


    Quote from afludiary.blogspot.com

    ...the real numbers are almost certainly quite a bit higher. There is a huge backlog of testing, and the CDC is no longer recommending that everyone who gets sick with flu-like symptoms be tested for the virus.

    There are just too many `suspect' cases.

    Dr. Schuchat stated that the virus was `widespread' and in `virtually every community' by now. There are probable or confirmed cases in `nearly every state'.

    Dr Schuchat said, "In most of the country, this virus is there" and that we should, "Expect numbers to jump quite a bit in the coming days."

    The median age of those confirmed with the virus is a relatively young 17, with most of the cases under 21. Very few cases have been confirmed in people over the age of 50.
    A few days ago it was found that there were cases of this new type A, H1N1 found in pigs on a farm in Alberta, Canada. The pigs had been infected by a carpenter working at the farm, who had just returned from travel to Mexico. This was addressed in the Sunday press conference also.

    Quote from afludiary.blogspot.com

    The subject of concerns over reassortment in pigs was addressed by Dr. Cox.

    Dr. Cox called reassortment a common & complex process.

    Influenza viruses have segmented genomes. Genes essentially in 8 different pieces.

    If a host (and that can be human, bird, pig, or other) is infected by 2 viruses, the 2 viruses can swap genes, and the virus that emerges is a hybrid of the two.

    What happens with pigs is that pigs can get swine, human, and avian influenza viruses. Which makes them wonderful mixing vessels.

    Now that we've had transmission to pigs, if pigs are infected with this virus and other viruses, there could be additional reassortments.

    Likewise if a human is infected with seasonal flu and the new flu, we could get a hybrid.

  8. by   indigo girl
    Swine H1N1 Transmission From Human to Swine


    Quote from www.recombinomics.com

    Co-circulation of human and swine H1N1 provide significant opportunities for adaptation to the human host via recombination. Two polymorphisms are already fixed in seasonal flu, H274Y for Tamiflu resistance, and E627K in PB2 which allows the virus to more efficiently replicate at lower temperatures.

    These changes can lead to adaptation in humans, as well antiviral resistance. Therefore, the evolution of the H1N1 over the summer will be closely monitored. The current H1N1 has already acquired tandem human H1N1 polymorphism in HA, which may have led to the species jump from swine to human.

    Thus, the efficient transmission from swine to human and vice verse, raises concerns that further adaptation to humans can lead to a fall pandemic similar to 1918. The species jump indicates the virus can adapt to a new host, and additional acquisitions over the summer continue to be a cause for concern.