Saturday, 16 May 2009

Wrong calculation for flu fatality in Malaysia

It is sad to see that a medical doctor can be completely wrong
and therefore mislead the public on the danger of this current Swine

The 1% figure is not fatality rate but Case Fatality Rate which is
completely different.

The fatality rate, that is the chance of you dying once you catch this
disease is many times this figure, i.e. around 4%. The inaccuracy in
exaggerated because it takes a long time to die from this flu.

The paper published in the Science Journal by Imperial College and
WHO, despite not completely reliable because lots of data are still
missing, indicate clearly that it is not normal flu fatality rate but
more of the Asian Flu Pandemic in 1957.

The insufficient data is the discrepencies of the fatality rates in
Europe(Zero), versus low in US and high in Mexico, especially in the
early stages.

This can be explained by the usage of Tamilflu. In Europe it is deemed
to be high. In UK, it was even used as preventive measures.

In USA, Tamilflu is most probably used for clear symptoms but not for
those with other so called chronic diseases that now include gout,
asthma and diabetic. And even pregnancy. Based on the limited
Newspaper reports of these 3 deaths in US, there are indications that
they were not prescribed with Tamilflu. One teacher is already dying
but he is alleged to be suffering from gout, i.e. excessive Uric Acid
and was not treated with Tamilflu until it is too late, i.e. more than
48 hours after the onset of symptoms.

Tamilfu is only effective if taken less than 48 hours after symptoms
develop and making it worse, normal H1N1 in USA is already immune to
Tamilflu. So after taking Tamilflu, if you still stick, it is an
indicator that you are suffering from normal flu that has a very low
fatality rate because it only kills the very young(less than 1 year
old) and the very old ( older than 60).

This current H1N1 kills mostly those younger than 60 and it can be
passed to pigs, but unfortunately these pigs won't die of this Swine

Saturday May 16, 2009
No reason to panic over A (H1N1)

With more than 7,000 people afflicted with the A (H1N1) virus and
Malaysia recording its first confirmed case, we have to act to keep it
from spreading. But there's little reason to fear as the virus can be
quelled and sent into the footnotes of his

IT'S official. A (H1N1) has affected one of our own, a 21-year-old who
returned from the US on Wednesday morning.

We are now part of the family of more than 30 nations that have
reported cases of this strain of flu.

Let's keep things in perspective. According to the World Health
Organisation (WHO), a quarter to half a million people die annually
from influenza, so A (H1N1) is by no means the only flu virus that can

The reason such new strains are more virulent is that natural human
immunity has not been developed against them.

The latest WHO statistics show that the number of confirmed cases of A
(H1N1) stands at 7,000 to 8,000 people in more than 30 countries, with
60 to 70 fatalities.

That's a fatality rate of less than 1%, suggesting that the virus may
not be as virulent as initially thought.

Lessons learnt from the SARS epidemic and the avian flu scare several
years ago have primed governments to respond to similar outbreaks

In Malaysia, the authorities are now trying to contact all the
passengers and crew on the same flight as the 21-year-old to ascertain
whether they have been affected so that they can take the necessary
steps to treat those who need it and prevent transmission to other

Entry and exit points in the country are being monitored. Designated
hospitals are primed to treat patients suspected of having contracted
the flu.

Quarantine procedures are in place. We have anti-virals to treat those
confirmed to have A (H1N1).

We are prepared.

In the meantime, we have to take care of our own. For those who are
planning overseas travel, try not to go to places that are affected by
the virus.

If you really need to travel, it's time to get to know your GP a bit
better. Seek his/her advice before you travel.

Be wary of flu-like symptoms such as fever, lethargy, lack of
appetite, body aches and coughing.

Some people may have runny nose, sore throat, nausea, vomiting and

If such symptoms manifest, see your doctor immediately, especially if
you fall in the high-risk group – younger children, the elderly, those
who have chronic diseases and those who are immuno-compromised.

If you do have such symptoms, try and keep away from others and seek
medical attention immediately.

Do practise better hygiene standards. Wash your hands regularly,
especially after using the toilet, before every meal and after a trip

And try not to sneeze into someone's face. Sneeze into a piece of
tissue instead and discard that tissue properly.

If you're coughing and sneezing frequently, and need to go out in
public, use a face mask to cover your nose and mouth.

Try and keep up with the news for regular updates from the Health

For the passengers who travelled on Malaysian Airlines flight MH091
from Newark in the Uni-ted States to Kuala Lumpur on May 13, please
contact the Health Ministry at 03-8881 0200/0300.

It's not only for your own protection, but for the protection of your
family and friends.

The Government is doing its part in trying to contain the spread of A

We need to do our part too.

We can take a few a simple steps to protect ourselves, our friends and
our loved ones. Some experts are predicting a second, deadlier wave of
A (H1N1).

Be that as it may, if we take the necessary steps to reduce our risk
exposure, nature will take its course, and A (H1N1) will become a
footnote in history, one amongst many.

We have to be careful: A (H1N1) may not be spreading like wildfire
yet, but the fear of the A (H1N1) virus definitely is.

> Paul Yeo graduated as a medical doctor and is health editor of Fit4Life, StarMag.

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