Uk, You, And The Flu Essay

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Zach JohnsonEng 104-016Dr. Van Sickels1 November 2009UK, You, and the FluAs the flu season fast approaches this year, college students have an even bigger reason to worry. This year the world has felt the effects of a new type of flu virus, initially given the name "swine flu". It was originally given the name "swine flu" because many of the genes in this virus were similar to influenza that occurs in pigs. However, it was discovered that this new virus genetically varies from swine flu, and, in fact, varies from all other types of flu. The H1N1 virus as it was properly titled, is recombinant, combining genetic material from swine flu, avian flu, and human seasonal flu, into a single super strand. (Brockwell-Staats, C, RG Webster, and RJ Webby). The University of Kentucky has reported over 70 cases of the new H1N1 virus on its campus. So although the university has increased its awareness and prevention efforts, the virus continues to plague the campus.H1N1 is a respiratory disease caused by an influenza virus, and has been labeled as a influenza pandemic, meaning that the infection has spread to a global scale. The virus is spread much of the same ways as seasonal influenza, mainly from person to person contact by sneezing or coughing with the virus. People may also become infected by touching a surface that has the influenza virus on it, and then touching an orphus such as the mouth or the nose. A study from the Center for Disease Control shows that the H1N1 virus can survive on a surface two to eight hours after being deposited by an infected person. According to the CDC, people infected with seasonal and novel H1N1 flu shed virus and may be able to infect others from 1 day before getting sick to 5 to 7 days after. This can be longer in some people, especially children and people with weakened immune systems and in people infected with the new H1N1 virus. The incubation period for H1N1virus is from 1 to 5 days from the time of contact to onset of symptoms. ("2009 H1N1 Flu ("Swine Flu") and You")The symptoms of H1N1 flu are very similar to those symptoms of the seasonal influenza in humans. The symptoms of 2009 H1N1 flu virus in people include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills and fatigue. Some people also exhibit vomiting and diarrhea. The worst symptoms from H1N1 last 3-5 days, but some people will experience flu symptoms for 7-10 days or longer, depending on age, immune status, and complications such as secondary bacterial infection. Illness with 2009 H1N1 virus has ranged from mild to severe. While most people who have been sick have recovered without needing medical treatment, hospitalizations and deaths from infection with this virus have occurred. CDC laboratory studies have shown that no children and very few adults younger than 60 years old have existing antibody to 2009 H1N1 flu virus; however, about one-third of adults older than 60 may have antibodies...

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