H1N1 Flu

As we are all aware the WHO has confirmed that H1N1 (swine)  flu has moved to stage 5, out of a possible 6 stages, on its international alert status indicating human-to-human transmission in at least two countries in the same region. However there are no cases of H1N1 flu are reported in India citizens are recommended to take following precautionary steps ensure your health safety.

Protect yourself and prevent illness

  • Avoid close contact with people who appear unwell and have fever and cough.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water thoroughly and often.
  • Practice good health habits including adequate sleep, eating nutritious food, and keeping physically active.
  • Avoid travelling the infected countries, If necessary take the following precautions while travelling
    Cover your nose and mouth during travel in the affected countries.
  • Avoid crowded places. Stay more than one arm’s length distance from persons sick with flu.
  • If you are sick, PLEASE
  • Stay home and limit contact with others as much as possible
  • Drink plenty of liquid  and eat nutritious food
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze

If you feel unwell, have high fever, cough or sore throat:

  • Stay at home and keep away from work or crowds.
  • Rest and take plenty of fluids.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with disposable tissues when coughing and sneezing, and dispose of the used tissues properly.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often and thoroughly, especially after coughing or sneezing.

Take a extra care about safer food

  • Keep clean
  • Separate raw and cooked food
  • Cook thoroughly
  • Keep food at safe temperatures
  • Ensure your non vegetarian food is cooked at a minimum temperature of 1600F/ 700C (Especially pork related products).
  • Use safe water and raw materials

General information about H1N1 Flu

Signs and symptoms of infection
Early signs of influenza A(H1N1) are flu-like, including fever, cough, headache, muscle and joint pain, sore throat and runny nose, and sometimes vomiting or diarrhoea

Is an effective vaccine already available against the new influenza A(H1N1) virus?
No, but work is already under way to develop such a vaccine. Influenza vaccines generally contain a dead or weakened form of a circulating virus. The vaccine prepares the body’s immune system to defend against a true infection. For the vaccine to protect as well as possible, the virus in it should match the circulating “wild-type” virus relatively closely. Since this H1N1 virus is new, there is no vaccine currently available made with this particular virus. Making a completely new influenza vaccine can take five to six months

To which antiviral drugs does this influenza virus respond?
There are two classes of antiviral drugs for influenza: inhibitors of neuraminidase such as oseltamivir and zanamivir; and adamantanes, such as amantadine and rimantadine. Tests on viruses obtained from patients in Mexico and the United States have indicated that current new H1N1 viruses are sensitive to neuraminidase inhibitors, but that the viruses are resistant to the other class, the adamantanes

Source: Intranet of Mastek

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