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H1N1 Swine Flu Update - Future Pandemic Direction Is Unpredictable

Updated on November 28, 2009

H1N1 Swine Flu Update - Future Pandemic Direction Is Unpredictable

All the regions of the country which are monitored by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention are beginning to see very slight decreases in the activity in H1N1 influenza in the past week or so however there are some states where the incidence of H1N1 influenza is continuing to increase. Hawaii and Maine are two of those states, as both of those areas saw significant increases in H1N1 reporting in the last week or two.
These statistics do not mean that in every community in every region and in every state there is a consistent decline. H1N1 has shown a marked recalcitrance to going away slowly and steadily. However, if we examine previous influenza seasons we note that there are many peaks and valleys in the graphs over the course of the influenza season. Therefore the best bet is that H1N1 will continue to circulate in the United States for the next few months at least, and the overall direction of the incidence of the H1N1 pandemic cannot be accurately forecast at this time.

There is a possibility that over the next few weeks there will be a repeat of the experience of almost 50 years ago where in an influenza epidemic of the time a second wave of cases and corresponding mortality occurred at the time just after the holidays when the medical establishment was of the opinion that the epidemic was on a severe downward slide. Given those historical prerequisites and perimeters we find that the forecasting of the future of an influenza epidemic or pandemic is imprecise to say the least.

The peak of the influenza epidemic and pandemic caused by the H1N1 Mexican Swine Flu Virus may have already been reached or it is just as likely that it may not have been reached yet at all. When the peak has been acknowledged to be reached in an influenza epidemic or pandemic according to the standards of the medical community it indicates that 50% of all the individuals who are going to get ill with the virus have not yet begun their disease progression.

There is often a lag between the peak of activity of influenza of epidemic or pandemic in a setting of outpatient care versus the peak of relative hospitalizations and then later deaths. This delay applies to illness and death caused by the H1N1 Mexican Swine Flu Virus or any other influenza epidemic or pandemic strain.

The fact which cannot be easily dismissed is that it is extremely early in the Northern Hemisphere winter time influenza season to be experiencing levels of any influenza strain to the extent that the United States is currently experiencing H1N1 activity.

Many questions have been brought up since the time a few days ago when the Norwegian medical authorities released information with regards to the discovery of the first acknowledged strain of H1N1 Mexican Swine Flu Virus which has become to a significant extent immune and resistant to the common antiviral drugs such as Tamiflu and Relenza. The virus mutation which was identified is a mutation by the Norwegian researchers was on a fairly small scale which only took into account a handful of virus isolates.

Continued In H1N1 Swine Flu Update - Norwegian Mutation May Cause Viral Pneumonia

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