As previously reported by the correspondent of Uzbekistan Today, the Ministry of Health identified a seasonal rise of swine flu.
Foreign media reports of new cases of A (H1N1) frequently. The team of Uzbekistan Today addressed the specialists at the Institute of Virology of the Ministry of Health with a request to elaborate on the situation in the country. It turned out that despite the seriousness of the threat, the risk of catching the flu is exagerated.
“Doctors often hear complaints from patients that after receiving the vaccine, they still got sick. In reality those patients don’t catch the flu, but usually suffer from some other respiratory viral infection,” says Deputy Director of the Institute of Virology Renat Latipov. “From a medical point of view, the flu - is an independent infection, and it is very important to distinguish it from other diseases and clarify its specific types in order to take appropriate preventative measures. That is why, last year acute respiratory diseases were monitored with the help of molecular genetic analysis in the laboratory in Tashkent. The analyses helped specify different types of diseases. In principle, all hypotheses concerning the frequency of the incidence of influenza were confirmed. Most people suffer from other infectious disease, but not the swine flu.”
Research participants were patients of Tashkent family clinics, seeking help with symptoms of acute respiratory infection. Specialists of clinics handed their samples for laboratory diagnostics in the center of the state sanitary and epidemiological surveillance, equipped with PCR analyzers. The diagnosis were carried out with the help of modern technologies of molecular- genetic analysis.
“The results showed that the incidence rate of swine flu for the season 2014-2015 was moderate, and the epidemic threshold was not crossed,” said Rinat Latipov.
During the entire season the increase in the number of cases was registered only twice - in December and February. Peaks were observed respectively on 51st and 7th week. The highest incidence was observed among children aged 0-2 and 3-6. The proportion of registered cases of flu accounted for only 0.16% of all acute respiratory infections. However, as shown by the results of laboratory tests, for the entire season 2014-2015, the average frequency of viral infections among all acute respiratory diseases accounted for 53.3 %, flu for 33.3 % ( 22.4 % - influenza A / H3N2 and influenza type B - 10.9 % ) and the rest of respiratory diseases accounted for 20.0 % (6.7% - rhinovirus infection, 5.5 % - respiratory syncytial infection, 3.6 % - metapnevmovirusnaya infection, 2.4 % - parainfluenza type II and III, 1.2 % - adenoviral infection, and 0.6% - mixed infection).
We asked experts to elaborate on swine flu and how effective modern medicine is in treating the disease. According to Rinat Latipov after the pandemic in 2010, the virus began to circulate annually among people, just like ordinary seasonal flu, along with influenza virus A (H3N2) and B worldwide. The antigens of the viruses are included in the influenza vaccine, stressed the head of the center. All who received the influenza vaccine are protected. In Uzbekistan, the flu vaccine is provided for free for with high risk of infection, others can get it for a fee.
Experts stressed that self-diagnosis and self-treatment is dangerous. Patients with the symptoms of the flu should not leave the house, they should call a physician and stay in bed. The patient should be isolated from other family members. If the patients is suffering from high temperature, dizziness or breathing diffulty, it is necessary to call an ambulance. Effective assistance can be provided only in the hospital.
The disease is easier to prevent than to treat. Our journalists had the opportunity to familiarize themselves with relevant preventative work in the mahalla Katta Hirmontepa, in Chilanzar. Here, the public is being educated about the seasonal illness. Activities in conjunction with the doctors of clinic №35 Chilanzar are directed at enhancing public awareness on protection against various diseases, such as influenza and other diseases.
“Prevention of any disease dependents on the health culture,” said the head physician of the family polyclinic №35, Saodat Khamidova. “For example, if you teach children to wash their hands, you can reduce the risk of contracting infectious acute intestinal diseases and oral diseases by 50 %. Nutrition is an important factor in promoting health and immunity. In the winter season, it is recommended to eat foods high in vitamin C. Onions and garlic consumed with the food also serve as protection against the flu and other diseases.”
Maintaining cleanliness of premises and observing good personal hygiene, consulting a doctor on time and not resorting to self-medication are all important preventative steps, that everyone can take.