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H1N1 Swine Flu Update

Updated on November 28, 2009

The H1N1 Mexican Swine Flu Virus remains extremely widespread at the current time and the current second pandemic wave does not show significant signs of peaking. Various forms of illness and influenza activity tied to the H1N1 Mexican Swine flu strain are still quite widespread around the United States and around the world. However, the distribution and supply of the vaccine seems to be holding up generally well around the United States at least.

There are currently some minor declines in the epidemiological levels of H1N1 influenza that has been occurring through the latter part of November. It has to be notes that this is a fairly minor drop and the extent of H1N1 around the country is still quite elevated. At the current time, 43 states are reporting medium to severe activity in H1N1 Mexican Swine Flu Virus activity, and that level that is down from 46 just a couple weeks ago. Again important to note that these levels are still considerably higher than they usually are in conventional traditional influenza seasons at this time of November.

The overall state of the H1N1 activity as right now can only be defined as still elevated. Even after the tiny decrease that was reported this week, the overall level is still well ahead of what would be considered a normal influenza year at this time in November. The influenza season is generally understood to begin in December and run right through May in the Northern Hemisphere however this year's particular H1N1 influenza is completely atypical. There is no way of knowing how many weeks this will continue at this rate or even how many months.

In the past week alone there were a total of 21 paediatric deaths they were associated to be H1N1 influenza and as of this time 15 of these were actually pathologically confirmed to be directly due to the H1N1 Mexican Swine Flu Virus while studies continue to determine the cause of death of the other six.

With those latest additions, that brings the total number of influenza deaths directly attributed to H1N1 in children to 171 cases. These are confirmed by the laboratories of the Centers For Disease Control & Prevention in Atlanta. The count of 171 influenza deaths in American children is only a partial count because the data is fairly slow in arriving to the Centers For Disease Control & Prevention headquarters, and is also often misrepresented on the lower of the end of the scale. This factor is due to the unfortunate reality that not all H1N1 influenza deaths are in listed in the autopsies report as such.

Approximately 70% of all the children who have perished from influenza this season have had a level of conditions that were already pre-existing such as asthma or even a level of neurological aliments such as cerebral palsy. The other approximately 30% have not had any noted pre-existing conditions.

It is very likely that since the holiday travelling season is starting now with Thanksgiving and going through Christmas and New Year's that the increase in individuals travelling around the country and around the world for their holidays will see increased interaction from people originating in various geographical areas and therefore the strains that they carry may mix and blend with each other's pre-existing influenza viruses.

Continued In H1N1 Swine Flu Update - Tamiflu Resistant Strain

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    • Hal Licino profile image

      Hal Licino 8 years ago from Toronto

      ethel smith: That is one of the most worrying aspects of this pandemic, is that it strikes very randomly but very seriously.

      eovery: There is no doubt that the LACK of severity of this second wave has surprised almost everyone. You're absolutely right that the severe underreporting is due to the expense and complication of the polymerase chain reaction, rapid antigen, and immunofluorescent antibody tests. The only time to make sure that a test is done is usually at an autopsy... that's very macabre. You're right also that the media has severely misplayed this pandemic. I guess that's what we get for throwing our formal news media away and trading it in for the free for all we see now. :(

    • eovery profile image

      eovery 8 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

      I am understanding that they actual missed and over rated this. Yes a lot of people are getting it, but the death rate for flu this year appears to be lower than that of other years.

      Around here, the news did not report it very well. My daughter got sick, so I took her to the doctor, since I am paying for it, I might as well use it, and the doctor said she had all the symptons of a flu, so they assume it is H1N1, but the only way to be sure was a $600 test. So the confirmed rate of H1N1 is very low.

      So with this, there were people walking the streets around here that appeared to have all the systems of the flu, but would not stay home and didn't think they had it, when actually they did.

      If the media would have told the public all this, more people would have stayed home and may not have passed it around so much. The media misses it again. All they could do was be alarmist, and still miss the story.

      With this, some people got sicker, i.e. pneaumonia and ended up dying. So you can see where I a mad at the stupid media missing the story.

      Keep on hubbing!

    • ethel smith profile image

      Eileen Kersey 8 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      Yes it seems a little unpredictable in the UK also. Recently a 5 year old, usually healthy girl, died.Very sad and worrying for all