July Swine flu outbreak shows Tamiflu Ineffective
2009 10 20
By Maggie Fox | Reuters.com
The outbreak provided a unique opportunity to study the virus closely and Dr. Catherine Takacs Witkop and colleagues say they discovered some surprising things: Tamiflu, the drug used to treat influenza, did not help any of the previously healthy young men and women get better any quicker.
More than 100 new cadets at the U.S. Air Force Academy got infected with swine flu at a July 4 barbecue and fireworks display but quick isolation measures got it under control within two weeks, researchers reported on Tuesday.
The outbreak provided a unique opportunity to study the virus closely and Dr. Catherine Takacs Witkop and colleagues say they discovered some surprising things. Among them:
* Nearly a quarter, or 24 percent, of patients still had virus in their noses seven days after getting sick, including 19 percent who had been well for at least 24 hours
* Tamiflu, the drug used to treat influenza, did not help any of the previously healthy young men and women get better any quicker.
* Most cadets were sick for five days or longer
* Eleven percent of the cadets became infected.
In June, soon after the new H1N1 virus was declared a pandemic, 1,376 new cadets arrived for their first training at the academy, near Colorado Springs, Colorado. By July 24, 134 confirmed and 33 suspected cases were identified, Witkop's team reported in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
The cadets, unusually young and healthy, all did well and none became seriously ill or died. Most cases were traced to a July 4 party for the cadets, Witkop said.
"It was about 48 to 72 hours later that we saw the increase in the cadets presenting with the symptoms," Witkop said in a telephone interview.
Witkop said the academy doctors quickly designated one dormitory for the sick cadets and kept them away from the others.
They tested them daily for the virus, painting a picture of the course of the disease far more detailed than has been possible before.
IN THE NOSE
Eleven, or 19 percent, of nose washes taken from 58 patients who had been free of symptoms for a full 24 hours still contained virus, although it is not clear if the patients were still contagious.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advises that H1N1 patients can return to work and school 24 hours after their symptoms such as fever go away.
The CDC's Dr. Anne Schuchat said researchers know people, especially children, can carry the virus long after they are better. "Shedding doesn't mean you are spreading," Schuchat told reporters in a telephone briefing. "Fever is a good marker of infectiousness or ability to spread."
Many of the cadets were treated with oseltamivir, pills sold by Roche AG under the Tamiflu brand name, but they did not get better any more quickly than untreated cadets.
"We did use it in the hope that we would stem the tide of the outbreak but I don't think the Tamiflu was the key player in the outreak resolution," Witkop said.
"I think it was ... the isolation protocol," she added. Cadets stayed in the sick dorm until they were free of symptoms for 24 hours, or for seven days after first getting sick, whichever was longer.
The CDC recommends saving Tamiflu for people most at risk of getting severely ill from flu, such as pregnant women, people with diabetes or asthma or disabled children.
The academy also quickly educated the cadets about washing hands and not spreading germs by covering their coughs, and Witkop said they used a great deal of hand sanitizer, which may have helped control the outbreak within 10 to 14 days.
Article from: Reuters.com
Latest News from our Front Page
Chess-playing computers may cause the robot apocalypse
2014 04 23
Sore-loser chess programs might be the end of us all...
In the movie The Terminator, we heard the human side of the story of Judgment Day, with the machines getting smart and seeing us as a threat. It wasn’t until the sequel that we heard the tale from the machine’s point of view, as it chose to start World War III ...
Archeologists’ findings may prove Rome a century older than thought
2014 04 23
It is already known as the eternal city, and if new archeological findings prove correct Rome may turn out to be even more so than believed until now.
Next week, the city will celebrate its official, 2,767th birthday. According to a tradition going back to classic times, the brothers Romulus and Remus founded the city on 21 April in the year ...
Swedish MP ordered chemtrail probe
2014 04 23
A Swedish MP who launched an official government investigation into the existence of chemtrails tells The Local why he thinks Swedes deserve the truth, even if it may leave some conspiracy theorists unsatisfied.
"I can’t speak for other MPs, but I’ve had many, many calls over the past eight years about chemtrails. And these questions are not so easy to answer," ...
Mystery of Bizarre Duck-Like Ocean Sound
2014 04 23
If it quacks like a duck... it’s not always a duck.
Scientists have reportedly gotten to the bottom of the mysterious ’Bio-Duck’ sound in the Antarctic.
Here’s a recording of the strange sound (it’s kind of a stretch to say it sounds like a duck, but who are we to second guess the biologists?).
Mystery of Bizarre Duck-Like Ocean Sound Solved
By Tanya Lewis ...
’Extreme’ Carbon Dioxide Reduction will be a Death Sentence for Humanity & Planet Earth
2014 04 23
If we allow a fraudulent pseudo-environmentalist cult to control every aspect of our lives then our children are doomed to a totalitarian existence which Stalin could only have dreamed of.
“The common enemy of humanity is man.
In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine ...
|More News » |