Re: H1N1 Time For A New Thread
Turns out CDC is paying attention to the bacterial infections seen in the tougher and even fatal SF cases. Just what I spoke about in an earlier post and was true in my daughters case with SF as well. Here’s the copy/paste just out today.
Spike in Bacterial Infections With Swine Flu
WebMD Health News
Nov. 25, 2009 — “A worrisome spike” in severe bacterial infections is complicating H1N1 swine flu cases, the CDC warned today.
Denver and nine other cities where CDC conducts intensive surveillance are seeing a tripling of cases of severe, life-threatening bacterial infections — including pneumonia and blood infections — linked to H1N1 swine flu.
Most cases of severe bacterial pneumonia occur in the elderly. But the cases being reported to the CDC are mostly in young adults aged 20 to 49, an age group particularly vulnerable to H1N1 swine flu.
“The H1N1 pandemic puts us at risk not just for flu but for bacterial pneumonia,” Anne Schuchat, MD, CDC director of immunization and respiratory diseases, said today at a news conference.
The bacteria causing most of the infections is pneumococcus. A pneumococcal vaccine is available and is recommended for adults and children at risk of serious bacterial infections. This is a larger than usual risk group. It includes people with immune deficiency and chronic health conditions, anyone with asthma — and anyone who smokes cigarettes.
Despite the CDC’s efforts, only 25% of people at risk of pneumococcal disease get vaccinated. The vaccine is not being distributed by the government as part of the H1N1 swine flu vaccination effort, but is readily available at doctors’ offices, health clinics, and retail pharmacies.
Because so few people at risk have received the vaccine, the CDC is not now recommending the pneumococcal vaccine for healthy adults — even though some of the severe cases reported to the CDC have been in people without pneumococcal risk factors.
Unfortunately, not all of the bacterial infections complicating H1N1 swine flu are vaccine preventable. Although not as common as pneumococcal infections, the CDC is also seeing a number of staph infections — including difficult to treat MRSA infections — complicating flu cases.