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FDA Approves 4 Swine Flu Vaccines
Date:9/15/2009

very time is fairly fast, just like seasonal flu, the Associated Press reported.

"This study shows you're not contagious for a day or two" with H1N1 swine flu. "You're probably contagious for about a week," said Gaston De Serres, a scientist at the Institute of Public Health in Quebec, Canada, who presented one of the studies Monday at an American Society for Microbiology conference in San Francisco.

Levels of virus present in nasal mucus can give experts an indication of whether the flu can still be spread by coughing and sneezing. In the Canadian study, between 19 percent to 75 percent of people with H1N1 flu still showed signs of virus in their noses eight days after the first onset of symptoms. Two others studies -- one from Singapore, the other from Mexico -- produced similar results.

The meeting is the first major gathering of infectious-disease experts since swine flu first emerged last spring in Mexico and the United States, before circulating around much of the globe. The World Health Organization is currently reporting nearly 280,000 cases of infection, with at least 3,205 deaths worldwide.

The CDC has been recommending that people infected with swine flu stay home and avoid contact with others for at least one day after they've been free of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications.

Nancy Cox, director of the CDC's Influenza Division, told the AP that keeping people out of work or school for extended periods of time may not be worth it, since the H1N1 virus continues to cause mostly mild illness, primarily in children and young adults.

"We tried to have our guidance balance out all of these factors," she said. "It's just virtually impossible not to have virus introduced into settings such as schools and universities."

More information

For more on H1N1 swine flu, visit Flu.gov.

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