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Old 04-30-2009, 12:12 PM
2 posts, read 3,216 times
Reputation: 10


I don't need to think again. I understand the problem. No you don't.

We don't live in 1918 and have access to several antiviral meds that will greatly aid in fighting this strain. Tamiflu (medication for this virus) has been shown to be resistant to H1N1 in as high as 70% of cases Video (http://www.wpxi.com/video/19313969/index.html - broken link)

Further, nearly everyone in America has access to at very least emergency medical care: Emergency centers would be overwhelmed with new cases. The majority of the employees at these facilities are in the target 20-40 age range who experience the worst effects of H1N1.

It has no chance of causing the same problems as the 1918 flu...at least in the US.

You are right-it could be worse, given the travel considerations of air, car and trains that expose individuals in greater amounts (one sneeze or cough in an airline infects over 200 people) Recently a British Airways attendant was placed in isolation with H1N1 symptoms when the plane landed: how many do you think he infected?

This is why the death rates are much higher in Mexico than the US, where only the 1st person has died.

The idea of stopping this flu strain from reaching Omaha is unbelievably naive and its likely already here.
It is suspected the illness is already in Omaha (Dr Adi Pour would not quote the hospital the individual received care) Containment is key after the virus expands to more individuals in the population
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Old 05-01-2009, 05:17 PM
Location: Nebraska
4,179 posts, read 9,389,033 times
Reputation: 9551
I am a fatalist and (as described by one of my physicians) a medical nihilist. This means that I don't go running to the doctor any and everytime I get ill. I take no regular medication. I have lupus; they tried to put me on steroids and I refused - because steroids do more damage over time and actually reduce the effectiveness of the immune system. I have had six surgeries to remove infected internal organs, or parts of them. I don't know what my cholesterol level is. I haven't had a full checkup in 8 years. If I'm sick, I stay home. I wash my hands regularly and cook my meat thouroughly (except for beef, which I love medium rare).

I have also studied pandemic history, especially the flu of 1918. In that case, the flu virus started out as a mild spring infection, then died off in the summer - and then came back, more mutated and violent, in the fall. The flu vaccines developed in the spring have little to no effect on the resurging flu that presents itself in the fall because of those mutations.

Are we better off in Nebraska? That depends on what you mean and where you are. Someone driving through Nebraska while infected could stop at local diners to eat, local gas stations to fuel up and use the restrooms, local motels and sit in the breakfast nooks chatting, and share fruit and waffles and coffee and germs. Someone flying on the same plane as a Nebraskan, to or from anywhere, could give the infection to a Nebraskan. The fact that the world and its population is so much more mobile than in 1918 is a factor. Transmission can happen from anyone, in any situation, from any and everywhere; and not just from the flu, but tuberculosis and other diseases spread by droplets in the air, or that remain on food and even door handles or in closed air systems, that are and can be more devastating. Several years ago I was visiting UT and ID during the flu virus spread, and one whole town (Malad, ID) was quarantined. Everyone in town had it. They even closed the interstate ramps to and from there for a week. Malad is not that big and everyone who lived there was related.

Panicking is silly and freaking out is useless. Stuff happens. Stock up on food and medical supplies, lots of clear liquids (no, vodka doesn't count!) analgesics, fever reducers, and cold medicines, and take your vitamins, get your exercise, and eat well. Wash your fresh vegies and cook your meat. Know who is preparing your food, and serving it. This way you can protect yourself and your families as much as possible. But don't panic. Do things in a normal, practical, and common sense manner.

All I have to advise is that you don't trust your life to those silly paper surgical masks to "save" you. They only keep the wearer from contaminating others, and do NOTHING to protect against the infections that others around the wearer have. REAL masks for infectious containment are far more expensive and have real filters on them.

I got a flu shot this year, and sure'nuff, in March, I got the flu. It put me down for one very miserable week, and I coughed and sneezed for weeks afterward. Blech. But by the time the flu I had comes back around next year, it will probably have mutated enough that I'll get it - AGAIN. One can only do one's best to avoid it, and deal with it if it comes. The State and FedGov may do their best, but they can't 'save' us from any or everything, no matter how many laws they pass, advice they give, or how much money they throw at the problem. Bless their hearts, they MEAN well, though. The media hype is boring, repetitive, and self-promoting and I don't pay any attention to it.
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Old 05-01-2009, 06:23 PM
Location: West Omaha
1,181 posts, read 3,646,690 times
Reputation: 477

Why do you think I don't understand the problem? Because I disagree with you??

I'm going to put my doctoral degree and my wife's doctoral degree, in an area concentrating on biochemistry, pathology, and disease states, against your twisting of facts any day.

You bring one obscure source mentioning that tamiflu is ineffective in "up to" 70% of cases and I'm supposed to disregard what nearly all other MD's, the CDC, and the WHO state??

Further, my comment about "emergency medical care" was pointing out that everyone has access to it. ..not that everyone would have to use it. First, you act as though 100% of Americans will get it, which is completely untrue. At a maximum...maybe 30%. Second, you act as though they'll all get it at the same time. It will roughly follow a bell curve, with the peak happening months after introduction into the population. Fourth, I did not mean everyone would go to an emergency room. Most will not. I meant that even those who have very poor medical coverage will be able to get access to care. Something that is NOT the case in Mexico. Finally, you are also acting as though all those who get swine flu are necessarily going to require medical care. The vast majority will NOT. In fact, there are likely thousands that have it right now who haven't or won't go to a doctor or a hospital. I am sick and tired of those in the media, which NO scientific or medical training, portraying this thing as the flipping black plague.

Finally, air travel won't have much of an affect on the numbers that infected. Quarantines are pretty ineffective against the flu virus. While air travel may hasten the spread, the numbers (in terms of %) exposed won't be more than 1918. And now we have medical care that is much much more advanced...and much much more accessible!

I would also add that a vaccine to a Swine Flu would most definitely be beneficial. Not so much for this strain, but it may provide background protection for future "swine flu" strains down the line. Part of the problem now is most of us don't have any background protection.

I'm not suggesting for a minute that we ignore it, but people need to quit freaking out. 15,000 Americans have died from the normal Flu since the beginning of the year...where is the panic in regard to that?? You are peddling a doomsday theory that simply is not supported by the facts.

Here is a quote from an actual expert:

"So far in the United States, he said, the virus appears to look and behave like the garden-variety flus that strike every winter. "There is no real reason to believe this is a more serious strain," he said." - Peter Palese - leading flu researcher with Mount Sinai Medical School

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090502/ap_on_he_me/med_swine_flu (broken link)

Last edited by mattpoulsen; 05-01-2009 at 07:18 PM..
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Old 05-01-2009, 07:21 PM
Location: Nebraska
4,179 posts, read 9,389,033 times
Reputation: 9551
y'know, mattpaulsen, I agree with almost everything that you said - except on the transmission ease factor, I beg to differ. The fact that the single (so far) Nebraskan case is actually a Caifornian visiting NE just shows that transmission has a likelihood of traveling much further, much faster, than in 1918, when few people had access to or utilized rapid and frequent transportation. Factoring in not only that our worldwide population is much larger, but which means that our cities are much larger (not merely rabbit-warrens, but teeming ant-hills, of folks crammed together in blocks of hi-rise apartments) - so transmission could occur in hundreds of thousands more people than the 1918 virus. However, if you are speaking on a global per-capita rather than an individual rate of percentages of infection, I can see your point. Where a city of a mere million was 'huge' in 1918, metropoli of several millions will naturally have more individual infections than 1918 - but speaking by per capita, the mathematics will remain close to the same. I just think that the transportation variable may cause more rapid transmission and spread. Does that make sense?
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Old 05-01-2009, 07:52 PM
Location: West Omaha
1,181 posts, read 3,646,690 times
Reputation: 477

Ya, you make sense. And I don't actually think we disagree. I agree that it will transmit faster. My point is the geographic footprint will still be the same.

By that I mean ultimately all communities will be exposed to it. Just as was the case in the 1918 pandemic. The 1918 flu spread to nearly every part of the world. This is part of the point with my comment on quarantines. Ultimately, they only slow the process down. The flu, being airborne and contagious up to a few days before symptoms are noticed, simply makes it not containable, in terms of exposed populations. You certainly, at an individual level can protect yourself from it...just like you can, on an annual basis, protect yourself from the "normal" flu. But it terms of geographic transmission its simply impossible. Imagine trying to stop the "normal" flu from trying to reach Omaha or any other city for that matter. Theoretically its possible, if, for example, you'd implement complete and total travel bans, but this was simply not practical in 1918 and its not practical now. Luckily, in terms of transmission, many scientists are now suggesting that its actually weaker than the normal flu.

Now, if it were only passed via contact or some other method than those exchange dynamics would be vastly different, and quarantines may be effective. But in this case its going to hit everywhere.

And yes, I was speaking in terms of per capita.

Somewhat unrelated to transmission capability, it is also worth noting that while we have tighter population densities and speed of travel, we also have better knowledge, medical care, AND, most importantly, communicative ability. Case in point, unifying the 3 areas of improvement, a few hundred people have died from the Swine Flu...in 1918, how many do you think died before anyone was even aware there was a problem? Of those 40 or 50 million who died, how many of those would be saved today, because of anti-virals or just general health care?

Last edited by mattpoulsen; 05-01-2009 at 08:14 PM..
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Old 05-01-2009, 09:42 PM
Location: Chicago
3,340 posts, read 8,689,603 times
Reputation: 1215
Hmmmm...... well thats a relief.
Swine flu may be less potent than first feared (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090502/ap_on_he_me/med_swine_flu - broken link)
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Old 05-02-2009, 02:11 PM
Location: West Omaha
1,181 posts, read 3,646,690 times
Reputation: 477
Here is another link with more information from people who actually know what they're talking about...as opposed to talking heads in the media:

The summary is this incarnation of the Swine Flu virus appears, after all all the doom and gloom, to be relatively weak. The article provides a bit more technical detail than the yahoo articles posted above, for anyone interested.

First genetic analysis of swine flu reveals potency - health - 01 May 2009 - New Scientist
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Old 05-03-2009, 01:56 AM
1 posts, read 1,934 times
Reputation: 10
Default Flu

Its just the flu nothing to special
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