Seasonal Flu and Other Flu Types

Seasonal Flu and Other Flu Types

A week’s stay at a hospital with flu is probably the last thing on your mind ahead of the festive season. But seasonal flu is one of the most common types of influenza affecting many men, women and children each winter. Caused by certain strains of RNA virus, this type of flu can be resisted with annual influenza vaccines, but not with 100% guarantee. Tamiflu oseltamivir can be another choice to prevent and treat seasonal flu. This Roche drug is capable of shortening the outbreak of symptoms quicker than other available influenza treatment options. Clinical trials have shown that Tamiflu can even help tackle an influenza pandemic if you take it for 6 weeks at a stretch.

Apart from the very real threat of seasonal flu, certain other types of influenza can also mar your celebrations this winter. The 2 most common types include bird flu and swine flu. Both these flu types have created widespread pandemics in the past, most notably in 2004 and 2009.

The 2004 bird flu pandemic was an important event in the history of influenza treatment. It was caused by a subtype known as H5N1 and is as infectious as the H1N1 influenza. But no treatment options were available at the time H5N1 caused the pandemic. However, the good news about bird flu is that there is no evidence to suggest that it can be transmitted from one individual to another. Experts are confident that even if a novel strain appears some time in future, we can fight it with medication.

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While seasonal influenza can be caused by all three subtypes of the RNA virus, bird flu and swine flu are caused only by viral type A. To a great extent, influenza treatment is developed on the basis of this difference. For example, the viral strain that caused the 2009 swine influenza pandemic was found to be a novel one until then. Its symptoms are quite similar to that of seasonal influenza and it can be very difficult to distinguish between these 2 flu types without a flu test.

The most common symptoms of seasonal flu and swine influenza are more or less similar to each other. Chills, fever, severe body ache, sore throat, cough, fatigue, and stuffy nose are what most people infected with the influenza virus experience. Bird flu symptoms, on the other hand, can be quite vague and may include respiratory problems and slight weight loss.

There is hardly any difference in the way common influenza and swine influenza transmit from one individual to another. Virtually all influenza viral strains spread through sneezing or coughing by people. You can also get infected with the virus when you come in touch with someone or something carrying the virus and then touching your own nose or mouth.

Another difference between common flu and swine influenza is that men aged 65 years or over are less at risk of getting infected with swine flu. Seasonal influenza can affect people of any age. Tamiflu can help you prevent both these types of influenza.