Sunday, May 10, 2009

H1N1 Flu

Why is this strain of flu causing so much concern?

It's a brand new mutation that's never been seen before. That's why it's not just hitting people in the highest risk groups — those over 65 and younger than two.

Flu is not usually a huge worry among the vast majority of healthy people because over the course of our lives, we are exposed to several flu strains. We develop some immunities. When we get the flu, we'll normally just feel really awful for a week or two. But when you have no immunities at all to a new strain, normally healthy people face as much of a risk as higher risk groups.

How does swine flu kill?

Swine flu — just like any other flu — is a respiratory infection. It exploits a weakened immune system to attack major organs — especially your lungs. When it gets into your lungs, it can lead to pneumonia, which can kill you. The flu can also cause secondary infections in your body — any of which can lead to failure of vital organs and death.

--from CBC News

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