Swine Flu Hits Hog...Warts

Swine Flu Hits Hog...Warts

Swine Flu Hits Hog...Warts

Could the Swine flu pandemic be an excuse to push vaccines and Tamiflu? Don’t go outside without a mask! Wash your hands excessively! Wow! Is it fear mongering at its best?

   

Swine Flu Hits Hog...Warts

image by: Ilona Higgins

Swine Flu, or H1N1, has infected its most famous victim to date. Rupert Grint, who plays Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter series, recently announced that he had contracted the virus. Although he had only a mild case of "Swine Flu", the actor was forced to take time off from filming Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, which is currently shooting in Britain.

The 20 year old was initially alarmed when he first heard the diagnosis. In a typical Ron Weasley fashion, his first reaction was, with a gulp and wide-eyed stare, “Am I going to die?” But he was fine. “Just a sore throat. No worse than a common cold”, said Grint. He continues, "I did have Swine flu, but it was just like any other flu I've had before. It was just a sore throat and I was in bed for a while, but it was quite scary when I was first told I had swine flu because of what's been in the press".

Makes you wonder what all the excitement is about. Don’t fly anywhere! If someone sneezes, quarantine them! Avoid all public places! Yet, maybe there really is something to the hype.

The Centers for Disease Control states that 36,000 people in the United States die annually from the common flu but at this juncture there are only 211 reported deaths from Swine flu. Uhmmm...However, although Swine flu hasn’t claimed as many victims as the common flu, the big difference between the two is that Swine flu kills seemingly young, healthy, people with normal immune systems just like the Great Influenza Epidemic of 1918 which claimed millions of lives. In fact, the average age of those in the United States who have contracted the disease is 22.

Swine flu and Spanish flu have other similarities as well: it is the same Type A variety, it emerges in the spring, it mutates and spreads rapidly, and it usually re-emerges in the fall with a vengeance. Today, Swine flu’s infection to death rate is under 1% but this may be just the tip of the iceberg.  There are currently three known drug resistant cases in the world, one just diagnosed in San Francisco last week. 

Currently, there is no vaccine available for Swine flu. However, there are five manufacturers working to produce one. Some experts say as many as 60 million doses will be needed to protect against the virus and the first of those could be ready by September. Unfortunately, time is running out and the vaccine will need to be tested before it's made available to the public or will it? Any takers?


Stacy Matson is a health enthusiast from Southern California and regularly blogs on Celebrity Health for A Healthier World, as well as contributing to the Best of the Best.

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Last Updated : Thursday, October 27, 2022