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What is Swine Flu?

Swine Flu, also called Swine influenza, H1N1 flu, hog flu, and pig flu, is an infection by any one of several types of swine influenza virus.

Swine influenza virus (SIV) is any strain of the influenza family of viruses that is endemic in pigs. As of 2009, the known SIV strains include influenza C and the subtypes of influenza A known as H1N1, H1N2, H3N1, H3N2, and H2N3.

Swine influenza virus is common throughout pig populations worldwide. Transmission of the virus from pigs to humans is not common and does not always lead to human influenza, often resulting only in the production of antibodies in the blood. If transmission does cause human influenza, it is called zoonotic swine flu.

People with regular exposure to pigs are at increased risk of swine flu infection. The meat of an infected animal poses "NO Risk" of infection when properly cooked.

During the mid-20th century, identification of influenza subtypes became possible, allowing accurate diagnosis of transmission to humans. Since then, only 50 such transmissions have been confirmed. These strains of swine flu rarely pass from human to human.

Symptoms of Zoonotic Swine Flu in Humans
Symptoms of zoonotic swine flu in humans are similar to those of influenza and of influenza-like illness in general:

- namely chills
- fever
- sore throat
- muscle pains
- severe headache
- coughing
- weakness
- general discomfort
Swine Flu Treatment

If a person becomes sick with swine flu, antiviral drugs can make the illness milder and make the patient feel better faster. They may also prevent serious flu complications.

For the swine flu treatment, antiviral drugs work best if started soon after getting sick within two days of symptoms.

See Also

» Avian Flu
» Dengue Fever
» Ebola Virus
» Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease
» Swine Flu
» Zika Fever

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