There are two important proteins used in the determination of the type of influenza; haemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA). There are 18 known variations of the haemagglutinin protein and 11 of the neuraminidase protein, giving hundreds of possible variations in the subtypes of the virus . These subtypes are further divided into different strains that have a divergent molecular makeup, giving rise to viruses that differ in virulence, ease of transmission and severity of symptoms. Not all strains of influenza can cause disease in humans; influenza D subtypes cannot infect humans and influenza C infections are rare and usually very minor. Influenza A and B are the subtypes that are responsible for the common infections and the epidemics and pandemics that occur periodically, with influenza A causing the majority of these infections. The virus is transmitted through the inhalation of droplets which are expelled when an infected person coughs or sneezes, through contact with a contaminated surface and through the exchange of saliva . The infected person becomes infectious to others around 12 hours after first contact with the virus and remains contagious for around the next five days; this can vary as the immunocompromised can take longer to subdue the virus and children tend to be more infectious than adults . The virus incubates in the respiratory tract by invading cells through the cleavage of the viral protein haemagglutinin by human proteases . The pathogenicity of a certain strain is determined by the spread of proteases in the respiratory tract that can cleave the proteins of the virus; a strain is typically milder if the proteases that reside in the lungs and throat are the only ones capable of cleaving the virus, causing an upper respiratory tract (URT)
Influenza is very contagious and spreads rapidly from person to person. Influenza causes worldwide yearly epidemics. According to World Health organization Influenza affects 5-15% world’s population and resulting in 500,000 deaths yearly. Ottenberg stated that, in United States, an average of 200,000 were hospitalized and 36,000 died each year from influenza complications. Influenza is the sixth leading cause of death among US adults and is related to 1 in 20 death in persons older than 65 years. Disease control and prevention estimates indicate that infections like H1N1 which is one of the types of influenza, have resulted in an estimated 42 to 86 million cases and 8520 to 17620 deaths. As I mentioned earlier that infections like
Throughout the history, influenza viruses have caused several pandemics or global epidemics, killing many people. For example, the influenza strike in 1918 to 1919 infected an estimated 500 million people worldwide, which is one-third of the planet’s population at the time and killed an estimated 20 million to 50 million people. More than 25 percentage of the U.S. population were affected, and caused 675,000 deaths in U.S during the pandemic.(History, 2015). There were no effective treatments for this type of influenza and no available vaccines can prevent its spread during the period. (History, 2015) U.S government required general population to wear masks and other protective equipments in public areas, and many public places also closed due to the influenza strike. Health care providers tried everything they knew to save people, but none shows any evidence of effects. (National Center for Biotechnology Information [NCBI], 2015). Scientists found out that the influenza virus had invaded their lungs and caused pneumonia, which made so many people died from the pandemic (History,2015). Another influenza strike happened
Influenza is an infectious illness that can be spread from one individual to the next. It can be transmitted by means of saliva, nasal secretions, feces and blood. It can also be spread by coming in contact with the virus on contaminated surfaces. Influenza is responsible for an average of 36,000 deaths and for more than 226,000 hospitalizations each year in the United States. (Davidson, 2007-2009, Davis, 2007).
At no time was a search for the cure for influenza more frantic than after the devastating effects of the pandemic of 1918. The pandemic killed somewhere between twenty and a hundred million people, making it twenty five times more deadly than the ordinary cough and sneeze flu. The symptoms of this flu
First of all, the name “Influenza” is derived from the Latin word for “influence”, and it is an infectious disease that is caused by the RNA viruses from the Orthomyxoviridae family:
Influenza, also known as the flu, is a highly contagious viral disease that affects the upper respiratory tract. Flu season typically lasts between the months of October and April. Signs and symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, muscle aches, fatigue, runny nose, and headaches. Individuals that are at a high risk of getting the flu include: children under the age of two, persons 65 and older, pregnant women, and persons with a chronic illness. Environment factors can also increase the risk of contracting the flu. Complications can include pneumonia, ear and sinus infections, dehydration, or worsening of chronic medical conditions. The influenza virus could eventually lead to longer hospitalization or death if left untreated. According to the CDC, the best way to prevent the flu is by getting vaccinated each year. Compliance with the vaccination is also important in preventing the flu.
The problem is that it is an option and little education is being provided to individuals about why the flu vaccine is important, especially to those at a higher risk of contracting the flu. People are hesitant to receive vaccinations due to a range of barriers. Some individuals suggest that the risk of receiving the vaccination is greater than the risk of acquiring the disease itself (Greenfield, 2013). “Research has shown that along with fear of needles and doubts of efficiency, misapprehension about the safety of influenza vaccination is the most common reason for refusal” (Cortes-Penfield, 2014).
Influenza is not a deadly virus and does have a vaccination. One of the three types of influenza, type C, “type C infections cause a mild respiratory illness and are not thought to cause epidemics” (Types of Influenza Viruses). The other two types of influenza viruses type“ A and B viruses cause seasonal epidemics” and happen mostly when winter hits (Types of Influenza
Throughout the years, humanity has created vaccines, a form of preparation used as a preventive inoculation to give immunity against any specific disease. The brave souls that put their lives at risk helping the injured, infected and preventing the spread should have the best form of defense when working. One simple and inexpensive defense would be to utilize the vaccinations that are created. The influenza vaccination should be mandatory for all healthcare workers who continue in their line of work.
There is a division in the medical community about the benefits of getting vaccinated against the flu. Some medical professionals insist that vaccination against the flu can decrease death by fifty percent, while others provide evidence against such a claim. It is difficult to determine how many people die from the flu, who has the flu, and which strain of the flu someone has. There are over 200 viruses that cause flu like systems. In reality, researchers believe that only 7 or 8 percent of cases of people actually contract the flu that report systems associated with the flu such as, headache, fever, coughing, etc. The flu can mutate very quickly causing the virus to differ every flu season if only slightly. Thus, members of the World Health
Paula Sullivan, a seasoned nurse practitioner, discusses how influenza is an infectious disease that takes place “in temperate regions around the world” which results in approximately the death of 500,000 people “annually” worldwide; 226,000 people get hospitalized and 36,000 die from influenza annually in the United States alone (Sullivan). Most of the people who die from the influenza virus are aged 65 years or older and that is usually because other diseases are
Influenza is a virus that is spread through airborne droplets, which are present when coughing, sneezing, and even talking (Adams, 2017). The awesome thing about influenza (i.e. the flu) is that it is fairly easy to prevent. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) lists seven ways you can use to protect yourself from the flu. The number one and most important is to get your yearly flu vaccination. Also, prevention includes avoiding close contact with those who are sick; staying home when you are sick; covering your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing; cleaning your hands with warm water and soap; avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth; and last but not least, practicing generally good health habits (CDC.gov, 2015). Adequate sleep,
According to Healthy People 2020 a goal of theirs is to “increase immunization rates and reduce preventable infections.” The influenza virus is one of these preventable infections, which can cause serious harm to patients. The influenza virus is known as the “flu.” Everyone in his or her life has had some experience with the flu, whether that is himself or herself or a family member. What if there was a way to ensure people from contracting a strain of the influenza virus? Well, thanks to technology and medical research there is.
Influenza, normally called “the flu”, the influenza virus causes an infection in the respiration tract. Even though the influenza virus can sometimes be compared with the common cold. It also can cause a more severe illness or death. During this past century, pandemics took place in 1918, 1957, and 1968, in all of these cases there where unfortunately many deaths. The “Spanish flu” in 1918, killed approximately half a million people in the United States alone. It killed around 20 million worldwide. The “Asian flu” in 1957, in the United States their 70,000 people died. In 1968 the “Hong-Kong flu” There where 34,000 deaths in the United