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H1N1 Virus: Symptoms, Prevention, Treatment

Updated/Revised Date: 2022-04-12
Author: Disabled World | Contact: Disabled World (Disabled-World.com)
Additional References: H1N1 Virus (Swine Flu) Publications

Synopsis: H1N1 information including treatment, prevention, and symptoms of Sporadic Swine Influenza virus SIV or Swine Flu infection. Just like the regular flu, swine flu can lead to more serious problems including pneumonia, a lung infection, and other breathing problems. And it can make an illness like diabetes or asthma worse. Treating either confirmed or suspected cases of swine flu with antivirals can include the use of either Zanamivir (Relenza) or Oseltamivir (Tamiflu). Recommendations regarding the use of antivirals can change as information on their susceptibilities becomes available.

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Main Document

The Sporadic H1N1 Swine Influenza virus (SIV) infection that people can experience has the potential to produce a number of clinical signs and symptoms. Numbers of the persons with a history of the SIV infection have a history of a recent, physical contact with pigs before becoming ill; although proximity without direct contact with pigs has also been reported among persons with SIV. Contact between persons that has been either limited or nonsustained between people has led to transmission of SIV and has been documented through published literature. Additionally, there have been confirmed cases of SIV that have not occurred through exposure to pigs.

Symptoms of Swine Flu

Many times, people experience symptoms such as a cough, fever, or sore throat; although symptoms like mild respiratory illness to include nasal congestion without a fever, or occasional severe disease have also been reported. Additional symptoms that have been reported by people with swine flu include diarrhea, vomiting, headache, myalgia, dyspnea, fatigue, and chills. Some people have experienced conjunctivitis, although it is rare. More severe disease to include pneumonia and respiratory failure have also been reported in association with swine flu. A consideration regarding SIV involves the exacerbation of other, underlying and chronic medical conditions that a person may experience, or invasive bacterial infections.

Clinical Care and Collection of Respiratory Specimens

People who either have, or are suspected of having the SIV virus, should be considered potentially contagious for a period of seven days from the date of illness onset. People who continue to exhibit symptoms of illness for a period of time that extends past seven days should be considered contagious until their symptoms have resolved. Children; younger children in particular, have the potential to remain contagious for longer periods of time. The current outbreak of SIV is affecting younger adults between the ages of twenty and forty years of age. The time a person may remain infectious various according to the strain of swine flu involved.

CDC prepackaged H1N1 reagent kits sit ready for domestic and international shipment to public health laboratories. Labs used kits like these to test influenza viruses during the 2009 pandemic. Image Courtesy of the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
CDC prepackaged H1N1 reagent kits sit ready for domestic and international shipment to public health laboratories. Labs used kits like these to test influenza viruses during the 2009 pandemic. Image Courtesy of the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Defining Swine Flu Cases

A confirmed case of SIV is defined as a person who is experiencing an acute respiratory illness combined with laboratory confirmation of the SIV virus through one of the following tests:

Suspected cases of SIV are defined as persons who are experiencing respiratory illness who may have had close contact with someone with a confirmed case of SIV while that person was ill or is an acutely ill person, such as someone with an acute respiratory illness, or contact with a person who has a history of recent contact with an animal with either a confirmed or suspected SIV infection. 'Close contact,' is defined as being within a proximity of six feet of someone who has a confirmed case of SIV. An, 'Acute Respiratory Illness,' is defined as the recent onset of at least two of the following things:

Healthcare Worker Recommendations

When interviewing persons who are either suspected of having, or are confirmed with the SIV virus, it is recommended to:

When collecting respiratory specimens from an ill confirmed or suspected swine influenza A virus case, the following is recommended:

Controlling Infection

Recommended Infection Control for a non-hospitalized patient in an Emergency Room, Clinic, or Home Visit:

Separate the person in a single room, if available, until the person is asymptomatic. If the ill person needs to move to another part of the house, they should wear a mask. The ill person should be encouraged to wash their hands frequently and to follow respiratory hygiene practices. Cups and other utensils that have been used by the ill person should be thoroughly washed with soap and water before they are used by other persons.

Infection Control for hospitalized patients involves the following procedures:

Treatment With Antivirals

Treating either confirmed or suspected cases of swine flu with antivirals can include the use of either Zanamivir (Relenza) or Oseltamivir (Tamiflu). Recommendations regarding the use of antivirals can change as information on their susceptibilities becomes available.

Antiviral treatment for confirmed or suspected ill case of swine influenza virus infection may include either oseltamivir (Tamiflu) or zanamivir, with no preference given at this time. Recommendations for use of antivirals may change as data on antiviral susceptibilities become available. It is important to initiate the treatment as soon as possible after the onset of symptoms. Confirmed and suspected cases of SIV should be monitored for fever and respiratory symptoms for a period of seven days after their last known exposure to a person with a confirmed case of SIV infection.

Dr. Christine Nevin-Woods, executive director of the Pueblo City-County Health Department, has presented a list of actions that people can take to stay healthy during any outbreaks of swine flu. These actions include:

Preparedness and stockpiling may be needed if an illness is near or in your area. Social distancing is implemented to reduce the spread of the illness. Social distancing may be used to prevent large crowds of people from gathering. For example, schools and shopping centers may be closed; sporting events or other special events may be canceled to protect the community from spreading illness.

H1N1 Facts and Statistics

H1N1 flu is also known as swine flu. It's called swine flu because, in the past, the people who caught it had direct contact with pigs. That changed several years ago, when a new virus emerged that spread among people who hadn't been near pigs. Just like the regular flu, swine flu can lead to more serious problems including pneumonia, a lung infection, and other breathing problems. And it can make an illness like diabetes or asthma worse.

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Subtopics and Associated Subjects


Latest H1N1 Virus (Swine Flu) Publications
H1N1 Flu Vaccine - Immunity Only Lasts 2 Years thumbnail image.
Research led by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University discovers immunity from H1N1 with vaccine shot only lasts for two years.
Publish Date: 2015-11-01 - Updated: 2016-06-13

Outbreak of 2013-2014 H1N1 flu virus reported in a number of Canadian Provinces and U.S. states, health officials recommend flu shots.
Publish Date: 2014-01-07 - Updated: 2019-10-27

Study reveals simultaneous infection with methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) increased risk for H1N1 flu-related mortality among previously healthy children.
Publish Date: 2011-11-07 - Updated: 2021-12-04

H1N1 flu hospitalization rates for African-Americans Hispanics and American Indian and Alaska Natives were nearly two to one higher than rates for Whites.
Publish Date: 2010-11-10

Additional H1N1 Virus (Swine Flu) Publications

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Cite This Page (APA): Disabled World. (2022, April 12). H1N1 Virus: Symptoms, Prevention, Treatment. Disabled World. Retrieved January 29, 2023 from www.disabled-world.com/health/influenza/swine-flu/

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