Swine flu killing love in Mexico

April 27, 2009 § 2 Comments

Kissing and hugging are now prohibited in Mexico. This after 89 people died due to a deadly strain of the swine flu virus. Mexico’s government literally ordered people to stop kissing to prevent the spread of the virus, which, health officials say, has shown signs of “pandemic” proportions.

Why do health experts worry about this new and lethal strain of the flu?

1918_flu_in_oaklandIn 1918-1919, nearly 20 to 100 million people around the world, died due to a virulent strain of the Spanish flu. It was an influenza pandemic which shook the entire world. Scientists say it originated in Austria in the spring of 1917 and literally spread in every corner of the globe.  The virus that infected at least one billion in the world has a influenza virus strain A of sub-type H1N1. In 25 weeks, this influenza strain killed 25 million people. It has been described as the “greatest medical holocaust in history” and is thought to have killed more people than the Medieval pandemic called the “Black death”.

Spanish flu exhibited unusual characteristics, similar to those now found in Mexico. First, it killed young adults and otherwise healthy victims. Influenza usually targets infants, the elderly and the weak. Second, the outbreak happened and spread in summer and fall in the Northen Hemisphere, an oddity since influenza is worse in the winter months. 

Wikipedia has a description of those with the symptoms:

People without symptoms could be stricken suddenly and within hours be too weak to walk; many died the next day. Symptoms included a blue tint to the face and coughing up blood caused by severe obstruction of the lungs. In some cases, the virus caused an uncontrollable hemorrhaging that filled the lungs, and patients drowned in their body fluids (pneumonia). In others, the flu caused frequent loss of bowel control and the victim would die from losing critical intestinal lining and blood loss.[citation needed]

In fast-progressing cases, mortality was primarily from pneumonia, by virus-induced consolidation. Slower-progressing cases featured secondary bacterial pneumonias, and there may have been neural involvement that led to mental disorders in a minority of cases. Some deaths resulted from malnourishment and even animal attacks in overwhelmed communities.

Now, in the Mexican flu cases, many of the victims show similar signs of the deadly Spanish flu virus. First, it infects healthy people, between the ages of 20 and 45 years old. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (US CDCP) says that the flu is a deadly strain of Influenza A virus, carrying the strain H1N1, the same characteristics as that of the Spanish flu. The latest strain contain DNA from avian, swine and human viruses, making it even deadlier.

Right now, it has spread to the US, Canada, France, Spain and New Zealand. At least 20 cases were reported in the US so far.

It can be passed on thru sneezing, coughing or having hand contact. However, they say, it’s not passed thru eating pork, but of course, it’s best not to eat pork for now.

Because of this flu, Mexico City has been turned into a ghost city. Most of the nightlclubs, bars and restaurants were ordered closed by the government (how about motels? are they closed too?).  Churches and cinemas were ordered closed too to prevent the spread of the disease.

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