Influenza - Its Symptoms and Causes
Influenza better known as the "flu" is an infection of the respiratory tract that can affect millions of people. The influenza virus can be spread from person to person through coughing and sneezing of an infected individual.
Statistics reveal about 20,000 Americans die from influenza or influenza related pneumonia each year. Pneumonia and influenza are the sixth common cause of death in the United States. Elderly (65+) make up more than 90 percent of the 20,000 Americans who die from this illness each year.
A person may contract the influenza virus and not experience any symptoms for a couple of days. The incubation period for the influenza virus ranges from 1-4 days.
Can there be more than 1 kind of Influenza virus?
There are 3 distinct sorts of Influenza viruses: Influenza A, Influenza B, and Influenza C. Influenza A can attack animals and humans, the remaining two (Influenza B and Influenza C) can only attack humans. Influenza C causes a very mild illness and doesn't provoke epidemics.
When observed through an electron microscope, influenza viruses are figured like filaments or spheres. Immunity to a strain of the influenza virus won't protect you against recently born strains of this virus, which has undergone minor changes or mutations.
The Influenza B and Influenza C virus may infect just human beings while Influenza A may infect several distinct kinds of animals. Influenza A virus can sicken many various kinds of animals, such as humans, aquatic mammals, birds, horses, swine, and others.
At times when two distinct strains of viruses unite in humans or animals, they lead to a new distinctive strain of virus with increased resistance. The contemporary 2004 Influenza Vaccine is made of three strains, including two strains of influenza A and one strain of influenza B.