What is Swine Flu?
Swine influenza is an infection by one of several types of swine influenza virus. Swine influenza virus (SIV) is a strain of the influenza family of viruses, which is prevalent in pigs.
Swine influenza virus is common in pig populations around the globe. Transmission of the virus from pigs to humans is uncommon and does not always lead to human influenza, often in the production of antibodies in the blood. People with regular contact with pigs are associated with an increased risk of swine flu infection. If properly cooked, meat of infected animal does not cause any harm.
In the middle of the 20th Century, the identification of influenza subtypes was possible to establish a precise diagnosis of transmission to humans. The strains of swine flu rarely transmit from person to person.
It is a highly contagious respiratory disease caused by one of many influenza A viruses. It spreads among the pigs through direct and indirect contact, aerosols, and from pigs that are infected but show no symptoms. In many parts of the world are pigs vaccinated against swine flu. The outbreak of swine flu that has affected humans is of H1N1 type. However, you can also get infected from the other species such as H1N2, H3N1 and H3N2. Some of the symptoms can be familiar to human influenza. There could be mild or no symptoms, to severe and potentially fatal pneumonia.
When the virus infects enough people in a given area, the risk of influenza is much greater. Experts say it is very difficult to predict what impact a flu pandemic by a swine influenza virus would have on the global population. This would depend on virulent nature of the virus, what existing immunity humans have. As pig influenza is rarely lethal to pigs, appropriate treatment and supportive care would do the bit. Efforts are made to prevent the spread of the virus throughout the farm or to other businesses and livestock vaccination techniques are most important in these efforts. Some antibiotics play a major role in treating the victims of this virus.
When a person is infected with swine flu, antiviral medications can prove to be mild remedy against it and the patients feel better faster. You can also prevent serious flu complications. In addition to antiviral and supportive care at home or in hospital, focus is on the control of fever, pain relief and maintaining fluid balance. Also, identification and treatment of any secondary infections play vital role.