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Flu is the acute viral disease affecting airways, which is followed by the expressed intoxication. The disease can lead to the most serious complications, and at times and to death, as a rule, at children and elderly patients.
On manifestations and ways of infection the SARS and flu are considered as diseases close to each other, however the cold in the chest causes big intoxication and often proceeds very hard, leading to various complications.
All faced this disease at least once in life. There is no wonder, as the illness is considered the most widespread infectious disease which is annually capable to lead to flashes, and at times and to epidemics. For this reason it is important to know everything about this illness: main dangers and ways of protection against it.
Worldwide annually huge number of children and adults suffers from the similar disease leading to very serious complications. All the matter is that the influenza virus is very changeable. Every year there are all new and new types of a virus, so-called strains which the immune system of the person did not meet yet. Therefore there is no absolute vaccine against this illness which could provide full protection as there is always a probability of absolutely new mutation of this virus.
To mankind about flu was many centuries are known back. The very first epidemic which is officially documented happened in far 1580. But, at that time still nothing was known neither of the disease, nor of its nature of emergence.
In 1918-1920 there was a pandemic of this respiratory infection which occupied all globe. The infection which received the name "Spaniard", most likely, was epidemic of the hardest flu. "Spaniard" was characterized by improbable mortality as a result of fulminant pneumonia and a fluid lungs.
The virus nature of flu was authentically established by Smith, Andrews and Leydlou in England only in 1933. They managed to allocate a specific virus which generally influenced respiratory tracts of hamsters. Infection occurred the washout arriving from a nasopharynx of patients. The virus designated by them belonged to flu of type "A". And in 1940 Medzhil and Francis could open an influenza virus of type "B". In 1947 Taylor could allocate new type of a virus — "With".
It is detailed to study an influenza virus and its properties it became possible from the 1940th. At this time the virus began to be grown up in special chicken embryos. Exactly since then in studying of this illness enough big step forward was made. Ability of flu to mutations was at that time open. Besides all sites of a virus which were capable to change were revealed. Certainly, creation of a medical vaccine became important opening.
The source of an infection is a sick person at whom viruses are allocated together with the phlegm and saliva separated from a nose during breath, cough and sneezing. These viruses are capable to get on mucous upper respiratory tracts, eyes or a nose directly from air or at contact with the patient. They can settle on various surfaces and then get on mucous membranes of the healthy person through hands or as a result of use of the general with the patient of various sanitary products.
After infection the virus straight gets on mucous membranes of upper respiratory tracts (a throat, a nose, a trachea or a throat), getting into cells and beginning to breed an active image. Literally in a couple of hours the virus affects all mucous upper respiratory tracts. It is not capable to strike other bodies, except respiratory. Therefore it will be wrong to apply such term as "intestinal flu" as the illness is not capable to affect mucous intestines of the healthy person. Often, what is called intestinal flu with such symptoms as intoxication which is followed by a diarrhea and fever is already other disease — a virus gastroenteritis.
And still it is absolutely not established definitely at the expense of what protective mechanisms reproduction of a virus stops, and, therefore, and there comes recovery. Ordinary 2-5 days later allocation of this virus in environment stops. Thus, the person sick with flu absolutely stops being dangerous, and also flu symptoms disappear after a while.
People at whom the immune system is weakened are most subject to a similar disease:
- small children aged till 2 years, their immune system it is still not final it is created;
- persons who have various illnesses of an immunodeficiency (congenital immunodeficiency disorders, HIV);
- people of advanced age;
- persons who have chronic diseases of cardiovascular system, especially with the acquired and inborn heart diseases;
- patients with a diabetes mellitus;
- persons who have various chronic diseases of lungs, including also bronchial asthma;
- pregnant women;
- the sick people having various chronic diseases of blood and kidneys;
- people of advanced age are, as a rule, more senior than 65 years which have various chronic diseases of various degree.
At flu the incubation interval very short also makes from infection before the very first manifestations on average 48 hours. This disease practically always begins sharply. Flu on weight of a current can be subdivided on easy, average and heavy.
Practically the catarral phenomena and symptoms of intoxication are always shown. And still, in 5-10% of all cases also the hemorrhagic component is noted.
Intoxication of flu is shown so:
- fever, at an easy form a current of which temperature, as a rule, does not exceed 38ºС; at an average – 39-40ºС; in case of a heavy current temperature can exceed 40 ºС;
- headache in eyes, especially at the movement of eyeglobes;
- muscle pains, as a rule, in joints, waist and legs;
- febricula and weakness;
- deterioration in appetite; there can
- sometimes be vomiting and nausea.
Flu symptoms at children can be shown in 2-3 days after infection. Then the disease quickly develops and begins to affect upper respiratory tracts.
High temperature to 40ºС, the fever, head and muscular pains, pharyngalgias and just feeling sick are considered as classical symptoms. Similar symptoms last about 3-4 days, but the fatigue and cough can proceed about 1-2 weeks after temperature fell down.
At children the disease can resemble other respiratory infections, such as pneumonia, bronchitis or a croup. Abdominal pains, diarrhea and vomiting can be noted. And vomiting can be shown more often than diarrhea. The behavior of the child changes – at high temperature the general irritability considerably increases.
At babies often it is difficult to distinguish flu, such symptoms and signs are not unique. Flu aged about 6 months occurs at kids slightly less often, however symptoms include sharp loss of appetite, the general apathy and slackness.
Diagnosis of flu
At emergence of symptoms of flu laboratory research of smears mucous a pharynx, a phlegm and nasopharyngeal washouts is appointed. The virus allocated in the analysis is cultivated for definition of an influenza strain. The type of a virus is defined by methods of an immunofluorescence and reaction of braking of a gemegglyutination. Specific immune serums are for this purpose used.
The rapid test for availability of antigens in rainfall of nasopharyngeal washouts can be appointed. Such research takes up to 30 minutes. it is the most often appointed diagnosis of flu.
Other diagnostic methods are almost not informative. Leukocytic blood test at normal disease remains actually normal or with small deviations. The leukopenia is observed only in the presence of virus or bacterial complications.
Treatment of flu
Flu is treated by both medicinal, and non-drug therapy. Non-drug treatment of flu takes place, as well as treatment of cold or ORZ. In this case the bed rest for 5 days is recommended. In the period of an exacerbation of an illness you should not read, work at the computer and to watch TV. Similar occupations exhaust the weakened organism, prolonging time of an illness and the subsequent risk of development of various complications.
At this type of treatment daily plentiful warm drink on 2 l of the liquid enriched with vitamin C – a fruit drink, infusion of a dogrose or tea with a lemon is recommended. Daily drinking such amount of liquid, the patient carries out desintoxication. Thus, there is an accelerated removal from an organism of the various toxins which are formed as a result of life activity of viruses. Such therapy is based on work of immune system of an organism and is not recommended to people with the weakened immunity having associated diseases which transferred shortly before it infectious diseases. For people from risk group during seasonal epidemics of an illness prevention of flu is recommended.
Nonspecific medicinal therapy in treatment of flu is characterized by use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs: paracetamol, ibuprofen, diclofenac. Similar drugs possess good antiinflammatory action, are capable to reduce the body temperature of the patient, reduce pain. In this case reception of such drugs as a part of such medicinal powders as teraflyu, Coldrex, etc. is possible.
Remember that to reduce body temperature below, than 38ºС, it is impossible as at this temperature in a human body the special protective mechanisms directed to fight against an infection become more active. The aspirin which is successfully applied to treatment of symptoms of flu at adults is contraindicated to children as at a viral infection it is capable to cause such heavy complication as a syndrome to Reja who represents the toxic encephalopathy which is shown a coma and epileptic seizures.
Are appointed at flu special antihistaminic drugs - it is the drugs applied at treatment of an allergy as they reduce all signs of an inflammation: hypostasis mucous and congestion of a nose. The drugs relating to the first generation of this group – tavegil, Suprastinum, a Dimedrol have a side effect such as drowsiness. – fenistit drugs of the next generation, loratadin, zirtek — have no similar effect.
Special vasoconstrictive drops in a nose allow to reduce nasopharynx hypostasis, to remove its congestion. But it is not safe drug as can seem first. Of course, on the one hand, at a SARS it is necessary to apply drops to reduce hypostasis and by that to improve outflow from nasal bosoms for the purpose of prevention of the subsequent development of antritis. Only you remember that prolonged and frequent use of such drops is dangerous in the sense that chronic rhinitis can develop.
In a case when there is an uncontrolled administration of drug, there can be a considerable thickening mucous the nasal courses, resulting in dependence on drops, to a constant congestion of a nose. In this case treatment of this complication only surgical. It is necessary to observe a high security of the use of drops: 7 days 3 times a day.
Treatment of pharyngalgias at flu also is a symptomatic treatment. The most effective remedy is this rinsing of a throat special disinfecting solutions. It is also possible to apply infusions of a camomile, a sage, and also Furacilin solution. Rinsing needs to be made rather often — to once at 2 o'clock. In addition it is possible to apply disinfecting sprays and aerosols: Bioparox, geksorat, etc.
Medicamentous therapy includes drugs for cough. Decrease in viscosity of a phlegm is considered the purpose of treatment of cough, having made it easy for expectoration. In this case observance of the drinking mode as warm drink is capable to liquefy a phlegm will be an important condition of recovery. In case of difficulties at expectoration it is possible to accept special expectorants, such as bronkholitin, Mucaltinum, AZZ.
Modern antiviral therapy is appointed in a complex with medicinal therapy. Anti-virus drugs and means for support of immune system of the patient are appointed. It is not necessary to self-medicate and accept antibacterial drugs, these medicines do not affect viruses, in particular an influenza virus.
Antiinfluenzal immunoglobulin which is entered by the patient suffering from an immunodeficiency is appointed. Antiviral means Rimantadinum. Treatment of flu Rimantadinum begins in the first day of a disease. Reception of Rimantadinum and to pregnant women the woman is not recommended to children till 12 flyings, to persons having chronic diseases of a liver and kidneys. The positive effect gives use of intranasal interferon.
Complications of flu
Long treatment or non-compliance with recommendations of the doctor often leads to complications of flu. Distinguish virus and bacterial complications of flu which lead to disturbance of work of respiratory system and associated diseases.
Primary viral pneumonia is extremely heavy virus complication at flu. The disease begins as flu that is often perceived sick as recurrence of a disease. An asthma is noted, respiratory insufficiency, cough with a phlegm, sometimes with blood develops.
Such complications as a pericardis and myocarditis marked out "Spaniard". Today such complications meet extremely seldom, but have a heavy clinical picture.
During a disease of flu the natural resilience of a human body to other infections strongly decreases. The organism spends all the internal reserves for fight against a virus. On this background bacterial complications of flu can promptly develop.
Bacterial pneumonia as a result of which in 2-3 days of a severe disease and after improvement of the general state, body temperature increases again. There is cough with a phlegm of green or yellow color. The most important not to pass the beginning of similar complication and to timely begin treatment of flu and complications with competently picked up antibiotics. Complications of flu are also the frontal sinusitis, antritis and otitis. The glomerulonephritis (an inflammation of renal tubules with depression of function of kidneys), encephalitis and meningitis (an inflammation of fabric and covers of a brain) belongs to heavier pathologies the provoked cold in the chest.
Prevention of flu
- For immunity strengthening, it is necessary to sleep daily not less than 8 hours.
- To dig in in a nose every morning oil gi (melted butter should be boiled on small fire until oil does not become absolutely transparent, it is added small amount of camphor there).
- Use a futsoking - it is a special soaking of legs in slightly added some salt water.
- Use for a nose Oxolinic ointment 2-3 times a day.
- It is possible to try preventive methods of traditional medicine, a droplet in a nose: 50 gr. sunflower oil we put for 20 minutes on the water bath, we add 1 teeth of garlic and bulb quarter juice, we mix everything, we allow to be drawn 2 hours, we filter through a gauze and we dig in several times during the day. Onions and garlic should be taken daily, and for the night to display in the room.
- To prevent hits of viruses in an organism, having limited contact with sick people.
- Remember that the influenza virus can linger some time on various objects of personal hygiene used by the patient. Therefore it is very important to wash hands right after contact with the patient's objects. It is impossible to touch dirty hands a mouth, eyes and a nose.
- However soap does not kill influenza viruses as washing of hands water with soap only promotes mechanical removal of microorganisms from hands. Use of disinfecting lotions for the purpose of prevention of flu is not justified at all.
- The risk to catch a SARS directly depends possibilities of resistance of immune system.
For maintenance of normal immunity follows:
- Fully, and, above all to eat properly: has to contain enough carbohydrates of fats, proteins and vitamins in food. During a cold time of year when in a diet the amount of the eaten fruit and vegetables considerably decreases, additional reception of a complex of vitamins is necessary.
- To go in regularly for physical culture in the fresh air.
- To avoid various stresses.
- To leave off smoking, smoking considerably reduces immunity.
The most efficient prevention of flu — use of vaccines which kinds are annually updated. Vaccination is carried out by vaccines which were created for fight against the viruses circulating in the last winter. Efficiency of vaccination increases at repeated vaccination.
Today there are 3 types of vaccines: tselnovirionny vaccines, a Split vaccine (split) and subunit vaccines.
When it is better to carry out vaccination?
It is the best of all to carry out vaccination to development of epidemic during the period from September to December. During epidemic it is possible to be vaccinated too, it is only necessary to mean that immunity forms in 7-15 days for which it is necessary to carry out additional prevention by means of Remantadinum.
Section: Infectious diseases