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Swine flu worse in Mexico than US, but why?

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Jeep789 Donating Member (935 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:28 PM
Original message
Swine flu worse in Mexico than US, but why?
By MIKE STOBBE, AP Medical Writer Mike Stobbe, Ap Medical Writer 2 hrs 11 mins ago

ATLANTA Why has the swine flu engulfing Mexico been deadly there, but not in the United States?

<snip>

In Mexico, about 70 deaths out of roughly 1,000 cases represents a fatality rate of about 7 percent. The Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-19, which killed an estimated 40 million worldwide, had a fatality rate of about 2.5 percent.

The Mexican rate sounds terrifying. But it's possible that far more than 1,000 people have been infected with the virus and that many had few if any symptoms, said Dr. Michael Osterholm, a prominent pandemic expert at the University of Minnesota.

<snip>

Currently, even the counted illnesses are problematic. Only a fraction have been lab confirmed. Severe penumonia-like illness happens all the time, so it's challenging to figure out which ones are really tied to the outbreak, U.S. health officials said.

More: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090425/ap_on_he_me/med_swine_flu_victims
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DainBramaged Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:30 PM
Response to Original message
1. Diet, access to medical care, hygiene
Lots of obvious reasons.
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Jeep789 Donating Member (935 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:33 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. Yes, the article mentions those
My guess is that this flu isn't half as bad as made out to be. Seems to have regular flu symptoms and I doubt most people even when to the doctor for it.
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cliffordu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:32 PM
Response to Original message
2. It's where they tried to dose the president.
:sarcasm:
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The Straight Story Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:32 PM
Response to Original message
3. Because they are outside partying and having fun while we are inside on the net?
:rofl:
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:36 PM
Response to Original message
5. That's true, they're only counting those with severe illness
at this point, since most people there as well as here tend to shrug it off and wait it out, whether with lemon tea, hot toddies, or tequila.

Still, it seems like this might be a nasty one, well worth avoiding if you possibly can.

Wash your hands and scratch your face with the back of your wrist. That will protect you most of all.
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Sarah Ibarruri Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:40 PM
Response to Original message
6. Malnutrition nt
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SheilaT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:44 PM
Response to Original message
7. Ever:y time I hear the scare talk
about how another flu pandemic could be as bad, or maybe worse, than the 1918 one, I try to get people to understand that there are enormous differences between today and then.

One hugely important difference (and I have no idea if this is any kind of a factor in Mexico City) is that back then few homes had running water, and routine hand-washing -- possibly the single biggest public-health improvement ever -- didn't exist then. That one factor alone would tend to hold down the spread of flu.

And of course there's diet and nutrition and other aspects of life that have changed dramatically over time. European peasants tended to live with their farm animals, making it very easy for pathogens to pass back and forth. It's probably why the Black Plague was so terrible: people lived in the same rooms with the animals that hosted the fleas that carried the plague.
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trotsky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 09:44 PM
Response to Reply #7
9. Not to mention anti-fever medication.
High fevers would cause deafness, blindness, organ damage, or even death. Lowly acetaminophen has probably saved countless lives.
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Sheets of Easter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 09:46 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. Please don't bring logic and reason to the table. You'll upset all the Chicken Littles.
;)
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Deja Q Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 10:05 PM
Response to Reply #11
15. Quite. And they don't taste like chicken either.
:(
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femmocrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 08:57 PM
Response to Original message
8. Has it definitely been confirmed that it IS swine flu?
I'm a little leery of all the panicking. From what I have heard and read today, the data is not conclusive at this point.
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nadinbrzezinski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 10:05 PM
Response to Reply #8
16. CDC has and WHO does not just go on alert for fun and games
or the pleasure of the chicken littles
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Avalux Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 10:07 PM
Response to Reply #8
17. Yes. A/H1N1 cases confirmed in Mexico, CA, TX, KS and NY.
Edited on Sat Apr-25-09 10:08 PM by Avalux
All the same virus. :hi:

There will probably be a lot more confirmed cases in the coming days and probably all over the world. No need to panic though; right now it doesn't seem to be particularly virulent.
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Sheets of Easter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 09:45 PM
Response to Original message
10. Because of Cheney's earthquake machine.
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Deja Q Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 10:04 PM
Response to Reply #10
14. Wait, I thought he needed viagra to make the earth move?
Wait, that's Bob Dole. Sorry about that... Dick's got a pacemaker and I don't mean Cialis... :evilgrin:

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roamer65 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 10:00 PM
Response to Original message
12. When the Europeans came to America...
Edited on Sat Apr-25-09 10:02 PM by roamer65
They brought viruses that were simply nuisances in Europe to the native Americans that turned into horrible epidemics. Could be a similar situation, just on a smaller scale.
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Deja Q Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-25-09 10:03 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. Yes, and the next time I see some sombrero-clad chap with a big blanket I'll call 911.
:crazy:
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