Like I have said in the past whenever I find good articles I will post the link, however when I find outstanding information I will share the entire piece, I hope you find it informative.
|Yes, it is that time again. Along with the beautiful fall color changes comes influenza season. Most individuals know about influenza illness, and the “shots” that help protect against infection. How about expanding that knowledge and going into the viral world for|
A Closer Look
|What’s in a name?The full name of an influenza virus appears like this.
Virus type/geographic origin/strain number/year of isolation/virus variety
Influenza is a respiratory illness which can be caused by a variety of influenza viruses. Each influenza virus is placed into a category: type A, B, or C
Remember the “H1N1” influenza last year also known as “swine flu”?
The outer surface of the influenza virus is covered with 2 types of proteins: An H type, and an N type. The H family has 16 different varieties, and the N family has 9. The influenza viruses that infect humans have the H1, H2, or H3 proteins, and they mingle with N1 and N2 in various combinations in any given year.
Influenza viruses also have common names which are associated with the source of the virus such as Brisbane, avian, or swine.
What’s in a vaccine?
Each year, scientists around the world work all year long identifying the types of influenza virus that are most common. This information is gathered and reviewed by the World Health Organization (WHO). The WHO then recommends which viral types should be included in the yearly influenza vaccine. In the United States, the FDA makes the final determination of vaccine contents. The yearly influenza vaccine contains 3 strains of influenza to increase the likelihood that the vaccine will protect against the main circulating viral types during the upcoming influenza season.
This year’s vaccine protects against:
- A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)
the same strain used for the2009 H1N1 vaccines;
- A/Perth/16/2009 (H3N2)
- B/Brisbane/ 60/2008.
Who should get vaccine?
Everyone over 6 months of age should receive the influenza vaccine, according to the CDC recommendations. This recommendation hopes to remove barriers to immunization based on age or health status, and helps to emphasize the importance of preventing influenza across the entire population. Priority groups for influenza shots include individuals who have a higher risk for complications from influenza and the professionals and family members who care for these individuals.
These people include:
- Pregnant women;
- children younger than 5, but especially children younger than 2 years old
- people 50 years of age and older;
- people of any age with certain chronic medical conditions such as diabetes, cancers, chronic respiratory disease or other illnesses affecting the immune system;
- people who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities;
- people who live with or care for those at high risk for complications from flu, including:
- Health care workers
- Household contacts of persons at high risk for complications from the flu
- Household contacts and out of home caregivers of children less than 6 months of age (these children are too young to be vaccinated).
Where to go for a “flu shot”
Usually both the injectable and the nasal spray forms of vaccine are available this flu season at your favorite pharmacy, your doctor’s office, OR you may want to take advantage of the MSU “flu clinics” offered around MSU’s campus. The cost for MSU faculty, staff, or retirees is $10.00. MSU human resources will contribute $17.00 towards the remainder of the cost.
Take Home Message
|The best way to prevent influenza is by getting vaccinated each year. By needle or nose; know influenza for no influenza.|
|Influenza is a contagious respiratory illness which is spread easily by coughing and sneezing. It can cause mild to severe illness, and can lead to death. Each year in the USA there are approximately 36,000 deaths related to influenza (annual range from 3,000-49,000 depending on the strain of influenza causing infection). Influenza is different from a cold; it usually comes on suddenly, and infected individuals may have some or all of these symptoms:
To prevent the spread of influenza:
Research Quality Grade: 1=A+
Reference and Further Reading
|Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Seasonal InfluenzaCenters for Disease Control and Prevention viral images|
| The information contained in the abstracts is not a personal health recommendation.
You should consult your own healthcare provider about decisions involved in your care.
Research Quality Grades: (1) = A+, (2) = A-, (3) = B, (4) = C, (5) = D *
*Quality of Evidence
(1) I: Evidence obtained from at least one properly randomized controlled trial. Well-designed and well-conducted meta-analyses were also considered, and were graded according to the quality of the studies on which the analyses were based (e.g., Grade I if the meta-analysis pooled properly randomized controlled trials). Please also note: occasionally randomized controlled trial studies may be given a lower grade due to other issues in the research design.
(2) II-1: Evidence obtained from well-designed controlled trials without randomization.
(3) II-2: Evidence obtained from well-designed cohort or case-control analytic studies, preferably from more than one center or research group.
(4) II-3: Evidence obtained from multiple time series with or without the intervention. Dramatic results in uncontrolled experiments (such as the results of the introduction of penicillin treatment in the 1940s) could also be regarded as this type of evidence.
(5) III: Opinions of respected authorities, based on clinical experience; descriptive studies and case reports; or reports of expert committees.
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