Navigation Links
People Can Emit Flu Germs in Air Up to 6 Feet Away, Study Finds
Date:1/31/2013

THURSDAY, Jan. 31 (HealthDay News) -- People suffering from the flu can give off small virus particles into the air at greater distances than previously thought, putting the health care workers who treat these patients at increased risk for getting the virus themselves, researchers report.

The investigators, from Wake Forest School of Medicine in North Carolina, suggest that more studies are needed on how the flu is spread. Infection-control guidelines for health care providers may also need to be updated to help these workers protect their health.

The study was published in the current edition of the Journal of Infectious Diseases.

"Our study offers new evidence of the natural emission of influenza and may provide a better understanding of how to best protect health care providers during routine care activities," the researchers, led by Dr. Werner Bischoff, wrote in the report.

For the study, Bischoff's team screened 94 patients with flu symptoms who were admitted to the emergency department or inpatient care unit of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center during the 2010-2011 flu season. Health care providers at this hospital are required to get a flu shot, the researchers pointed out in a Wake Forest news release.

The investigators also collected air samples within one foot, three feet and six feet of the patients screened. As the air samples were taken, no aerosol-generating procedures -- such as bronchoscopy, intubation or CPR -- were performed. The researchers also recorded the number of times the patients coughed or sneezed and rated the severity of these symptoms. The patients also answered questions about their condition and how long they had been sick.

The study authors found that 65 percent of the patients tested positive for the flu. Of these people, 43 percent released particles containing the virus into the air. Those who emitted the highest levels of the flu virus into the air reported having the worst flu-like symptoms. These patients also had the highest viral loads in their collected samples.

Most of the flu virus found in the air samples was contained in small particles up to six feet away from the infected patients. Although concentrations of the virus decreased with distance, the researchers noted that at this range health care providers may still be exposed to infectious dosages of the flu.

Bischoff and colleagues also said that some patients were what they called "super emitters," and gave off up to 32 times more virus than the other patients. These people, they concluded, may be more likely to pass the flu on to others.

Dr. Caroline Breese Hall, from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in Rochester, N.Y., pointed out in an accompanying journal editorial that the findings "question the traditional belief that influenza is primarily spread by close contact with an infected person or by direct contact with infectious secretions."

And Dr. William Schaffner, chair of the department of preventive medicine at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, also commented on the study. "Influenza vaccination, although not perfect, is the best tool we have to protect health care workers -- and their patients -- from influenza illness," he said in the news release. Schaffner was not involved with the study.

More information

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has more about the flu.

-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas

SOURCE: Wake Forest School of Medicine, news release, Jan. 31, 2013


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Normal triglyceride levels in people of African descent may hinder diagnosis of metabolic syndrome
2. Anxiety Might Help People Sniff Out Threats
3. People Carrying Guns May Appear Bigger Than They Are
4. CT Scans Deliver More Radiation to Obese People: Study
5. Good intentions bring mixed results for Haitis disabled people
6. Migraines More Likely for People With Celiac Disease, Study Says
7. People Love Talking About Themselves, Brain Scans Show
8. Older People With Dementia Cared for Mostly at Home
9. People With HIV at Higher Odds of Sudden Cardiac Death
10. People Who Lived Near World Trade Center Report More Lung Disease
11. 1 size doesnt fit all when treating blood pressure in people with diabetes, VA/U-M study suggests
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
People Can Emit Flu Germs in Air Up to 6 Feet Away, Study Finds
(Date:6/26/2017)... ... 26, 2017 , ... KICKICO , a protocol built on Ethereum for ... many catastrophic issues within funding campaigns. KICKICO developers are testing the platform, which will ... the raising of funds through the power of many - has been around for ...
(Date:6/25/2017)... ... June 25, 2017 , ... An increase in wetter weather in ... plants, and along with that; a humdinger of an allergy season. A relief from ... an increase in misery-causing grass and weed pollen. , “Our patients have been ...
(Date:6/24/2017)... ... June 24, 2017 , ... The Pennsylvania Athletic Trainers’ Society’s ... and Erie Convention Center on June 8-10. The weekend consisted of many ... award and scholarship presentations, and professional networking. , On Friday June 9th, ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... VA (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2017 , ... ... of what is needed and will ultimately do significant harm to people with ... to everyone. , "While it leaves in place the Affordable Care Act ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Dr. Ran Y. Rubinstein , a ... offering three new minimally invasive procedures to patients who want a younger and ... Rubinstein is excited to bring microneedling, microneedling facials, and platelet rich plasma (PRP) ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/14/2017)... June 14, 2017 The Bio Supply Management ... City of Fremont and the Biomedical Manufacturing ... industry in California by providing ... networking, and fostering workforce development. The primary focus of ... of start-ups, as well as small and mid-sized biomedical ...
(Date:6/10/2017)... June 9, 2017  Shane K. Burchfield, DPM, is recognized by ... as a Podiatrist in Alabama . ... First Foot Care. He brings over 20 years of experience, as ... and healthcare, to his role. ... PC is pleased to welcome you to his practice," ...
(Date:6/8/2017)... 8, 2017  StatLab Medical Products ("StatLab" ... manufacturer of diagnostic supplies for the anatomic ... & Company LP ("Cressey & Company"), a ... growth-focused investment in the Company. Cressey & ... from selling shareholder, Prairie Capital, L.P., with ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: