Tuesday, July 14, 2009

How to differentiate swine flu or pig flu from the common flu?


The Human Swine H1N1 Type A influenza (also called swine flu, hog flu, and pig flu) epidemic worldwide and confirmed across the globe. Seems it is not easy to avoid it. Once if you got flu symptoms, how can you know you got affected Swine flu or not?

Symptoms of swine and seasonal flu include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue. Both symptoms are almost the same. Dr. Ng Hee Liang (M.B., B.S. Singapore) mention that, even the symptoms is similar, you can still identify if affected within 2-3 days.

If you got common flu or seasonal flu, it can be recovered within first 2-3 days. Take Prescription medicine is a common way to cure. You don’t need to worry about if there is no more symptoms in 4-5 days.

However, the chance of affect Swine Flu is high if your symptoms get worse over 4 days or last long time (even take prescription medicine). In some cases, after feeling a little better, it show signs of a more serious problem. Some of these signs are a sick-to-your-stomach feeling, vomiting, high fever, shaking, chills, chest pain, or coughing with thick, yellow-green mucus.
Some Patients do seem to be reporting diarrhoea and vomiting more often with swine flu than is the case for "normal" flu. Some of the patient’s body temperature even rise to 39 degree or even more.

In another way, Dr. Bermal of Manila (Philippines) explains that flu viruses commonly circulate in the human and animal environment. Seasonal flu is caused by flu viruses that change to spread in humans; whereas swine flu is caused by those that affect pigs. She notes that the mixing of human and animal flu viruses can lead to the development of new viruses in which the human population has little or no immunity against.

Secondly, Swine Flu virus is more active than the common flu, it can spread from human to pig and vice versa. If it spread from pig to human, it also can spread between human to human. For common flu, it can only spread between human to human. Common flu will have chance to spread over after the patient affected in first 2-3 days. For the incubation period, Swine flu virus may only have symptoms 7 days after affected, while common flu virus only has maximum 4 days. The death rate of H1N1 virus is relatively higher than common flu. It is about 6.77% compare to less than 1% of common flu. Age around 20 – 45 is easy to affect H1N1 virus and many of them is teenagers, while common flu is not only affected by young people.

Finally, uunless you have access to a virology laboratory, you probably can't distinguish the two viruses in exact way. In practice the two forms are probably indistinguishable.

P.S. Wash hand frequently and wearing face masks in crowd place is the only way to prevent swine flu.

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2 comments:

  1. apart from wash hand and wearing mask in crowd place, sufficient rest and exercise to keep a healthy body to avoid the viruses attack is also essential.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I thought H1N1 can access through the eyes therefore a partial face mask is of little use.
    There was a Dr on our news who was very adamant that the eyes were a common site for access.
    Can you clarify?

    ReplyDelete

Reference Books

Reference Books
Swine Flu Survival Guide

Swine Flu Dangers - What You Need To Know