Swine Flu or a Common Cold- Know the Difference


swine flu

Some information on Swine Influenza You may find Helpful

In the classification of the viruses, Influenza consists of three of the five genera of the family. It has three main types; Influenza A, Influenza B and Influenza C. All these distinct types differ in their influences on the mammals and animals that they attack on.

Influenza A is the most dangerous and potent of all and produces devastating outbreaks in domestic poultry or arouses Human Influenza Pandemic, whilst Influenza B is less common and Influenza C is not known to cause any sort of endemic or pandemic.

The first sub-division, Influenza A has further sub-types which are named on the basis of the proteins that are present on their surfaces, Hemagglutinin (HA) and Neuraminidase (NA), for example, H1N1, H2N2 and H5N1 etc. Swine Influenza is caused by the sub-type H1N1 from the category of Influenza A. It contains 1 HA and 1 NA protein molecule as indicated by its name. This Influenza type exclusively affects people, birds, pigs, horses and other animals.
As compared to other types, it has higher mutation rate and therefore constitutes of various prevalent strains against which antibodies have still not been produced, which therefore increases its mortality and morbidity ratio. Influenza B and C are genetically less diverse and immunity against them can be achieved over a time period but lasting immunity is still not possible as they do mutate and diversify with the passage of time.
All the distinctive categories of the Influenza virus pose unlike hazards and dangers to the lives of thousands of people across the globe but through proper diagnosis and analysis, these ailments can be cured if one has unfortunately encountered them.

Know the Difference between a Cold and H1N1 Flu Symptoms:

Know the Difference between a Cold and H1N1 Flu Symptoms:



H1N1 Flu


Fever is rare

Temperatures of 100°F or higher for 3 to 4 days


A hacking (mucus-producing) cough is often present

A dry cough is usually present


Slight body aches and pains

Severe aches and pains

Stuffy Nose

Stuffy nose is commonly present and typically resolves spontaneously within a week

Stuffy nose is not commonly present


Chills are uncommon

Chills occur in 60% of cases


Tiredness is fairly mild

Tiredness is moderate to severe


Sneezing is common

Sneezing is not common

Sudden Symptoms

Symptoms tend to develop over a few days

Rapid onset within 3-6 hours with sudden symptoms of high fever - muscle aches - shortness of breath - tight chest


Headaches are fairly mild

Headache occur in 80% of cases

Sore Throat

Sore throat is commonly present

Sore throat is not commonly present

Chest Discomfort

Chest discomfort is mild to moderate

Chest discomfort is often severe

The only way to stop the epidemic is to spread the awareness.


'Prevention is better than cure' is a true expression. Accordingly, like in case of other diseases, preventive measures against the Swine influenza virus can also be taken. They focus on the reduction of spread of the virus in swine, from swine to humans and from human to human.
In humans, coughs and sneezes by the infected person contain the contaminated germs and a healthy person if they come in contact with it can get infected. As the means of catchting the disease are similar to those of common cold,the preventive measures are also similar.

Washing the hands frequently, especially after public exposure, avoiding nearness to an infected person, avoiding public gatherings, using alcohol based sanitizers to kill the virus and using a good disinfectant to disinfect various household surfaces are among all the measures which prove helpful against this disease.

It is to be noted that consuming pork products is not a way of becoming a victim to this disease as the meat which is properly cooked has no pathogens remaining.
As the ailments seem to be spreading around the globe at a relatively fast pace, so is the fear among people as how they can prevent them. Likewise, Swine Influenza has also been gaining much concern amongst many nations regarding the preventive measures that can be adopted for impeding it.

The greatest risk that these endemics and pandemics pose are to pregnant women who seem to be much more susceptible to these diseases due to the fact that their immunity is much lower at that time period. Therefore, they need to take extra precaution for protecting their baby and themselves from any possible harm. Pregnant women should regularly visit and talk to their doctor or nurse practitioner regarding their health and have regular check-ups of the unborn baby to assure its well being.

They are recommended to use flu vaccines where these are available, preferably Tamiflu or Relenza, but it should be noted that they are Class C Medications, which means that there are no adequate studies, regarding the effects either animal or human.

'Always Seek Professional Medical Advice'

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