of Swine Flu but these only occur when they are not given Tamilflu.
The figure used to be low, e.g. 20% in Malaysia, but it is more due to
wrong diagnosis of prior illnesses, as most humans have a slight
medical conditions which do not prevent them from being physically
active to the point of being a Soldier and Fireman, as shown by a
swine flu fatality case in UK.
The fatality used to be low as well because they were treated well
with Tamilflu, as had been done by UK in the early stages but lately
there was a lot of advice for healthy patients not to take tamilflu.
As a result the number of Tamilflu prescriptions go down, but the
number of deaths go up.
The good news is that the number of deaths didn't follow the
exponential pattern as monitored by ECDC. There appear to be a drop 2
weeks ago, but this is due to the school holidays in Australia and UK,
more than 2 weeks ago. As the students return, it peaked up again but
only to the level of the previous 2 weeks.
This supports the vaccination plan that the best way to protect the
whole population is to vaccinate the children, which has the highest
vaccination effectiveness instead of old people that have low
The reported number of deaths didn't match up to the predicted 10,000
despite following the pattern of 10 per month, up to last month, which
was 1000. This month should be 10,000 but so far only 2,450. These are
confirmed swine flu after weeks of testing. As the number of deaths
grows large, up to the 10,000 number worldwide, it will be difficulat
to undergo all the Swine Flu confirmation phase. It does not mean
that there are no 10,000 deaths, but burials will not tell lies.
The worst will be in the next month, when it approaches 100,000
worldwide. It will certainly tax the health care of many nations,
thereby increasing the rate to more than 10 per month. Small but
wealthy nations like New Zealand and Australia have already ordered
more lung machines. What hope is there for large but poor nations like
The rate in India is more than 20 per month, so by the second month it
should be more than 400, but their medical authorities are still
sleeping, thinking that 20 per month is not as bad as 30,000 in 30
China has to be commended for still having ZERO fatality, due to its
over zealousness in enforcing quarantine procedures. Despite China's
large confirmed Swine Flu cases, it still has zero fatality which is
surprising because it achieves a fatality rate that is lower than the
10,000 to 1 for ARDS fatality observed by a French researcher.
Probably the low microbe exposure causes less fatality as our bodies
can ward off a smaller number of microbes.
That is why my son's wearing of masks in the classroom helps somehow
despite him taking it off just before going out of the classroom. With
the surgical mask not entirely foolproof against airborne microbes,
the lack of any mask, even in the short duration while still inside
the classroom had exposed him to swine or other flu virus.
So strict quarantine is still the best practise because it is
economical in life and monetary terms, but failing that, we all should
wear masks in enclosed places.
GENEVA - Healthy patients who get H1N1 swine flu without suffering
complications do not need to be treated with antivirals like Tamiflu,
the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday.
But the drugs are strongly recommended for pregnant women, patients
with underlying medical conditions and children under 5, since they
are at increased risk of more severe illness.
However, judging who will need antivirals is not easy for doctors
since the risk of developing severe illness from the new flu strain is
not restricted to people who have chronic conditions such as heart
disease, diabetes or asthma.
"Worldwide, around 40 percent of severe cases are now occurring in
previously healthy children and adults, usually under the age of 50,"
the U.N. agency said in its latest guidelines on drug use.
"Some of these patients experience a sudden and very rapid
deterioration in their clinical condition, usually on day 5 or 6
following the onset of symptoms," it said.
Despite the WHO's conclusion that underlying medical conditions do not
predict a severe infection, the fact that 6 out of 10 patients
suffering serious bouts of swine flu do have previous conditions
chimes with other medical research.
A study published on Thursday by France's Institute for Public Health
Surveillance concluded that about half the people dying from swine flu
were pregnant or had other health conditions, especially diabetes or
conditions linked with obesity.
The WHO said doctors should give Tamiflu to patients with severe
illness or whose condition deteriorates, or to high-risk groups
including pregnant women, but not to healthy people with no
complications, as most of these recover fully within a week.
International experts who reviewed the latest evidence found that
Tamiflu, made by Switzerland's Roche, "can significantly reduce the
risk of pneumonia," a leading cause of death for both pandemic and
seasonal flu, it said.
Viral pneumonia, which does not respond to antibiotics, can lead to
the failure of multiple organs, including the heart, kidneys and
liver, so patients will require intensive care and additional
treatment to antivirals.
"Studies show that early treatment, preferably within 48 hours after
symptom onset, is strongly associated with better clinical outcome,"
the WHO said.
The recommendation applies to all patients, including pregnant women
and all age groups including infants.
When oseltamivir, the generic name for Tamiflu, is not available or
cannot be used for any reason, zanamivir, made by GlaxoSmithKline
under license from Biota and sold under the brand name Relenza, may be
given, it said.
The WHO said it has been notified of 12 cases where the H1N1 virus had
been resistant to treatment with Tamiflu, as a result of a mutation.
There was no evidence of onward transmission of the virus in these
cases, it said.
The H1N1 strain has now spread to 177 countries, causing at least
1,799 deaths, the WHO said in a separate statement.
© Copyright (c) Reuters