Swine Flu (cont.)
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Swine Flu Transmission
Swine influenza (novel H1N1 and H3N2v) spreads from person to person, either by inhaling the virus or by touching surfaces contaminated with the virus, then touching the mouth or nose. Infected droplets are expelled into the air through coughing or sneezing. H3N2v does not spread as easily from person to person as H1N1. This poor transmission rate is likely why there have been so few individuals infected with H3N2v.
Research suggested that H1N1 swine influenza is about as contagious as the usual human influenza. If one person in a household gets swine flu, anywhere from 8%-19% of household contacts likely will get infected. Reports from the southern hemisphere suggest that swine influenza caused slightly more infections than would be normal for an influenza season.
However, the newest swine flu virus, H3H2v, is not being spread very easily from human to human. The majority of infections to date occurred as a result of the swine virus H3N2v being transmitted directly from pigs to humans, since most of the reported infected people were associated with pig farms or state fairs with pigs as predominant competition entries. However, the CDC is concerned because this situation could easily change if H3N2v acquires genes that allow easy viral transmission between humans.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/25/2013
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