Navigation Links
Swine Flu Waning, But Could Return
Date:12/1/2009

CDC urges H1N1 vaccination because pandemic's course remains unpredictable

TUESDAY, Dec. 1 (HealthDay News) -- A U.S. health official said Tuesday that H1N1 swine flu infections appear to be on the wane nationally, but many experts agreed the virus could return in force later this winter.

The flu is now widespread in 32 states -- down from 43 states the week before, Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said during an afternoon press conference. In addition, H1N1 vaccine supplies are increasing.

"We are going from a time where there was lots of disease and not enough vaccine to a time where disease is gradually decreasing, and we are having a steady increase in the amount of vaccine that is available," Frieden said.

While there are fewer new cases of the swine flu, it is still not gone, and it may return, he said.

Flu is highly unpredictable, Frieden said. Of the experts the CDC polled on the odds of another surge, about 50 percent said there would be one, and about 50 percent said there would not be one -- and one expert said "flip a coin."

Frieden noted that in the flu pandemic of 1957-1958, cases surged at the start of the school year and then waned, but surged again from December to February.

There is no way of telling whether or not that will happen this year, he said. But people should take advantage of the current lull in flu activity to get vaccinated just in case the flu comes back.

Despite a decline in the number of cases, "we are far from out of the woods," Frieden said.

Right now, close to 70 million doses of vaccine are available, with more on the way, and most people should be able to get vaccinated this month, he said.

And there was one more piece of good news. Duke University Hospital in Durham, N.C., which last week reported four cases of very ill patients with H1N1 that did not respond to the antiviral Tamiflu, said in a news release Tuesday that it has uncovered "no additional cases" of the potentially dangerous, drug-resistant strain. No such cases have appeared throughout the state either, the university said.

But not of all the news has been good: 35 flu-related pediatric deaths -- 27 from lab-confirmed H1N1 -- were reported to the CDC this week, bringing to 234 the total number of flu-related child deaths since April. According to the Associated Press, this week's jump in pediatric flu deaths is the largest one-week increase since scientists first spotted the H1N1 virus in April.

Overall, hospitalizations and deaths continue "to be higher than expected for this time of year," the CDC said.

These reports follow on news last week that the ongoing pandemic may be driving a recent spike in dangerous pneumonias among younger patients.

"We are seeing an increase in serious pneumococcal infections around the country," Dr. Anne Schuchat, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said during a press conference last Wednesday. "Pandemics put us at risk for not just flu problems, but also bacterial pneumonia problems," she added.

These bacterial infections commonly infect the lungs and sometimes the bloodstream. During most flu seasons, secondary infections such as pneumonia typically occur in people 65 and older, she said.

However, in this pandemic the increase in pneumococcal infections is being seen primarily among younger people, Schuchat said.

Questions about the safety of the H1N1 vaccine have lingered, but Schuchat sought to assuage any fear with some of the first safety data available since mass vaccinations began.

"So far, everything we have reviewed is extremely reassuring," she said during last Wednesday's press briefing. "In our look at all of the safety data in the U.S. so far, we are seeing patterns that are pretty much exactly what we see with the seasonal flu vaccine."

More information

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



SOURCES: Dec. 1, 2009, teleconference with: Thomas R. Frieden, M.D., M.P.H., director, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Nov. 25, 2009, press conference, Anne Schuchat, M.D., director, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Associated Press


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. U.S. Swine Flu Cases Chart Sharp Decline
2. Swine Flu Tied to Rise in Pneumonias Among Young
3. H1N1 News Today Examines the Swine Flu Virus From a Global Perspective; Read the Latest H1N1 Virus Vaccine & Prevention News From EIN News
4. Swine Flu May Hit Kids With Asthma Harder
5. Swine Flu Declining in Some Parts of U.S.
6. Immunity to Swine Flu May Be Broader Than Thought
7. 22 Million Sickened by Swine Flu in 6 Months
8. My 10-Day Ordeal With the Swine Flu
9. How to Survive Recession and Swine Flu Outbreak in Your Employees
10. Older People at Greater Risk of Swine Flu Death
11. Tamiflu-Resistant Swine Flu Found in Canadian Father
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... February 10, 2016 , ... The 9th annual ... Imaging Congress (WMIC), will be held in New York City, NY on September ... Therapy.” The congress will highlight and emphasize how imaging reveals a greater understanding ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... ... LaserShip, a regional parcel carrier that services the eastern U.S., donated and ... in order to aid in the Flint water crisis. In 2014, LaserShip acquired Prestige ... Clio, only 15 miles away from Flint. , “We have deep roots in the ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Fort Walton Beach, Florida (PRWEB) , ... February ... ... that the innovative weather-forecasting company is unveiling its revolutionary new 2.0 version at ... new platform, MetLoop has “put the power of the world's most advanced weather ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... February 10, 2016 , ... Intermedix ... of Emergency Medicine , an emergency medicine professional association, to support the organization's ... , The American Academy of Emergency Medicine, or AAEM, seeks to empower emergency ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... 10, 2016 , ... Emergency rooms provide emergency care to stabilize critical health ... patients with dental emergencies at risk of losing a tooth or their smiles. Dr. ... , Common dental emergencies include:, , Avulsed or knocked-out teeth ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... --> --> This press release is ... --> Japan .  --> A separate press release has ... Shire continues to strengthen its presence ... Shire continues to strengthen its presence in ... continues to strengthen its presence in ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... , Feb. 10, 2016  Resolve Therapeutics, ... transformative new approaches to the treatment of lupus ... of a multiple ascending dose study in patients ... compound RSLV-132. --> ... placebo-controlled multiple ascending dose study of RSLV-132 in ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... YORK , Feb. 10, 2016 Immune ... biopharmaceutical company, announced today that it has filed a ... Leukemia and other cancers. --> ... treating cancer by administration of Ceplene (histamine dihydrochloride) in ... provides methods of predicting the efficacy of Ceplene and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: