Swine Flu, also known as H1N1 flu, first appeared in spring 2009. A few months after its first appearance, it caused deaths across the world and declared as a global pandemic infection in Aug 2010. Swine Flu is a human respiratory infection that is caused by a particular influenza virus H1N1 strain.
Transmission of Swine Flu
It was actually originated in swine or pigs, as Swine influenza virus (SIV) generally affects pigs. Humans somehow got infected by this deadly H1N1 virus by eating infected pork or coming in direct contact with infected swine.
It is a highly communicable infection among human beings and we need to be careful of its transmission. Its transmission takes place when an infected person comes in direct contact with the uninfected people. The mode of transfer of HIN1 virus is air so the infection is highly contagious.
Symptoms of Swine Flu:
The Swine Flu symptoms are like normal flu and it is very tough to discriminate. However, we don’t need to panic. It is a curable infection and following are the symptoms shown by the H1N1 patients:
- Body aches
- Loss of appetite
- Sore throat
- vomiting and diarrhea (in some cases)
People who are at risk of Swine Flu
- Acute lung disorders, heart problems.
- Diseases of Kidney and Liver.
- Pregnant mother.
- Aged people.
- Kids under 2 years age.
- Person suffering from obesity.
- Compromised immune system (from a disease such as AIDS).
- Past history of infections.
Diagnosis of Swine Flu:
If you are having the above listed symptoms, then don’t panic. Just go to a qualified doctor who will prescribe you Swine Flu test. Both government and private labs do H1N1 tests. Government labs don’t charge for diagnosis but, private labs usually charge 4500 INR and more. As per recent guideline from the Government of Delhi, no private lab can charge more than 4500 INR. The test is done by taking respiratory samples including throat swab and nasopharyngeal/nasal swabs. The test is based upon RT-PCR.
Treatment of Swine Flu:
Don’t take drugs yourselves if your H1N1 test comes positive. Your doctor will prescribe drugs for you. Some of the common and effective drugs of Swine Flu are: Tamiflu/Fluvir and Relenza.
Precautions/Prevention of Swine Flu
- Keep wearing mask when you go outside
- Try to avoid shaking hands with people
- Maintain hygiene. Do wash your hands with sanitizer or soap often
- Try to avoid large gatherings
- Cover your mouth while sneezing or coughing
- If you are down with Swine Flu then don’t go to your school or office or any public place.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth as the H1N1 virus survives on objects.
- For increasing your body immunity, you can take cinnamon, garlic, basil leaves, ginger, vitamin c, zinc etc