No one is putting their lives or practices on hold because of swine flu. This could just burn out, although it is an H1N1 strain so it changes fast. Milder flu strains have a pattern in their course, they replicate from strong to weaker… always. It starts out as Gangbusters with a base of generalized toxins that the body has seen (some) of before. After 24 hours the shift in the milder virus RNA starts making lots of mistakes, manufactures junk that can’t do much harm. It also means that when you are sickest you are over the toilet or have the fever and not out in the world of people. It passes onto others weaker and weaker as it moves over the population and it dies out.
If H1N1 runs the way it has in the past, it’s on the same course as 1918. Big killer onset hitting a small cluster… then it goes mild, But H1N1 spins about after a little practice and comes back around in 90 days for the big events. Just evaluate on the macro level what this disease is doing.
The hosts/reservoir (swine/hogs/pigs) have about the same body temp. and lining composition in their lungs that humans do so when it makes the first big leap it’s to a mammal resembling their cellular composition: humans. When it begins in the new host, or vector, the viral RNA begins to make deliberate random duplication errors meaning it can be passed but it’s mild. But H1N1 RNA is just practicing for the right codes to speed up its manufacture of toxins and getting better at hiding from the immuno-recognition in humans.
When H1N1 graduates, it begins to look so much like our own cell replication that it has time to damage lungs very badly, the body saying I know I’m sick but I can’t see it. Then the human body says Hell… sock it with everything you’ve got and send everything everywhere. Oh and kill all the cells where you find the toxins. None of that slow hunt and peck for the right offenders. The huge immuno reaction finishes the process. No lung cells left, no oxygenated blood.
Oh and I almost admire the last trick H1N1 has reserved… now it learns to twist out RNA that can actually attack other organs, not satisfied to remain a respiratory specialist. Kidneys, liver, valves and vessels. On the IQ scale H1N1 is smarter than Ebola, AIDS, and SARS. It’s a soldier that can march anywhere, unlike AIDS which needs body fluid exchange, it gets stronger while it thinks unlike Ebola, which burns out after hitting a certain group and can’t jump because it’s weakened, and H1N1 broadens its horizons in the human body and case by case unlike SARS that remains respiratory.
How fast the mild cases of H1N1 run the globe is an indicator as to how fast it will run during the 2nd wave. And it is moving fast. The unreported numbers out of Mexico and and worldwide are giving us an idea of what percentage of the population the 2nd wave will hit. Approx. the same. But when it comes around 2nd wave it will sicken the population age that are the backbone in caregiving, curing, defending the country, fighting fires, answering 911…
I too am rather hoping to get the mild case. Hoping for a little immunity. Also I’m a medical professional. And although I’m not talking to others in the field directly, we are getting edgy about the course of what we are seeing.
As far as standards for health, the only thing H1N1 required was people near the initial host transfer which were hogs. Those people in Haskell KS, were not particularly the embodiment of bad health or unclean practices.
Too much ehh… I hear 36,000 dying per year in the immuno-weak ages with milder strains of flu. Grandpa who was 91 and family said let him go, or the 63 year old MS victim, people with AIDS. People who didn’t get first round aggressive treatment and then developed bacterial pneumonia. which finalized their death. The plain misdiagnosed are in those numbers too. Some have estimated that half of that 36,000 have another one or two chronic diseases before flu onset and subsequent death. H1N1 doesn’t need that advantage.
WHO will back down the pandemic warning when they see H1N1 burn down, but they are just waiting for the first change in this virus to go into action. I think I will keep on keeping on, but I will listen to WHO, and CDC.
On a personal note, I have a 20-something daughter back from DC. She is in bed with a temp. cough and aches. She will not be getting tested for the virus.