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Influenza (Aka The Flu) Essay

1556 words - 6 pages


Influenza better known as “The Flu” strikes the world every year infecting millions of people throughout different countries. Influenza is a deadly virus is an extremely contagious respiratory illness caused by the influenza viruses. Flu appears most frequently in winter and early spring. The influenza virus attacks the body by spreading through the upper or lower respiratory tract. There have been documented traces of the flu as early as the 12th century. The flu came back on surfaced the Earth in early in the 20th century around World War One in China. Approximately infecting 20% to 40% of the world’s population became ill. This pandemic virus killed more than anything disease in human history the death toll ranging from 50 to 100 million people. Nearly 675,000 people died in the United States of this epidemic. The world’s population in 1918 was 1.8 billion to now 7.1 billion in 2014. An estimated 8 million people in Spain became sicken with the flu. Known as the “Spanish flu” it was highly informed about in newspapers across Spain. The Spanish flu had so many people to die from this disease it was referred back to “Black Death” in the middle ages. The virus spread quickly as troops aboard warships went to different parts of the Earth during WWI.

In February 1957, a new flu virus came about in Asia officials predicted another pandemic. Health officials monitored flu outbreaks until a vaccine could be produced. Unfortunately the elderly immune system was too weak to fight off the flu about 69,800 people died from this majority were the elderly. A little over ten years after the second outbreak had happened in 1968 health officials detected the United States another case of the flu virus. The death rate decreased to 33,800 people because of improved medical care and antibiotics were more effective. In recent history in 2009 the H1N1 (swine flu) was diagnosed on April 15th, 2009. On April 26th 2009 the U.S government declared H1N1 a public emergency. The virus affected a total of 74 countries while the H1N1 vaccine supply was limited in the beginning. 48 states had reported the swine flu virus mostly in young people. About 80 million people were vaccinated against the swine flu. In a year’s span nearly 43 to 89 million people had the H1N1 virus and between 8,870 and 18,300 deaths were swine flu related. Now on a yearly basis the flu in the United States is linked between 3,000 to 49,000 deaths and hospitalizing 200,000 people. There are different types of influenza known as type A, B and C viruses.


Symptoms of influenza are recognizable by multiple signals but most people mistaken the flu for the common cold. The flu symptoms include having a high body temperature or feeling feverish but not everyone with the flu has a fever. Feeling fatigue, nauseated and having headaches and body aches are also signs of the virus. Vomiting and diarrhea...

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