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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:46 pm 
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DES MOINES, Iowa— State health officials say a new flu strain has been found during routine surveillance in Iowa and that the three people who became ill with the virus have all recovered.

The Iowa Department of Public Health says the A/H3N2 virus was detected in three children in Webster and Hamilton counties. It also has been found in other states in recent months but its spread appears to be limited with no new cases being identified in the past week.

Because the virus is unique, health officials have increased surveillance for the strain at clinics and emergency rooms.

Symptoms are similar to the regular flu virus and include fever, cough, fatigue and body aches.

State Medical Director Dr. Patricia Quinlisk says the seasonal flu vaccine that is available may offer some protection.

AP-WF-11-22-11 2101GMT

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi- ... 4228.story

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:47 pm 
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Three children in north-central Iowa have been sickened by a new version of the flu virus.


The Iowa Department of Public Health announced this afternoon that the children had tested positive for the A/H3N2 strain of the influenza virus, which has cropped up in several other states this fall. The children are from Webster or Hamilton counties. None needed hospitalization, and all have recovered.


The same strain has sickened seven other Americans - in Pennsylvania, Maine and Indiana.


Dr. Patricia Quinlisk, the department’s medical director, said the new virus is very similar to “A” strains that have been around for years. Because of that, she said, experts believe the current flu vaccine will provide some protection against it.


Quinlisk said she did not believe any of the three Iowa children who became ill had received the vaccine this year. The three children’s names, ages and hometowns were not released, but Quinlisk said one of the children apparently passed the virus to the other two.


Two years ago, public-health authorities declared a crisis after the appearance of a new flu virus, H1N1. Quinlisk said H3N2 strain is causing less concern because it has more similarities to previous strains and because it appears to cause relatively mild illnesses. “The H1N1 virus was different because it was very new and it seemed to spread very easily from person to person,” she said. However, Quinlisk said state health authorities have increased their surveillance activities in the Iowa region where the H3N2 virus popped up, and they are coordinating their efforts with federal experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


Quinlisk said such situations have cropped up two or three times in the past decade. “It’s not real common, but it’s not that different, either,” she said. Flu viruses routinely mutate, forcing health authorities to repeatedly reformulate vaccines.

http://www.desmoinesregister.com/articl ... nav%7Chead

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:50 pm 
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Nov 22, 2011 (CIDRAP News) – Health officials in Iowa announced today they have identified novel swine influenza A/H3N2 infections in three children, similar to cases that have been identified over the past months in a handful of other states.

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) said in a statement that routine surveillance turned up the novel virus in Webster and Hamilton counties. The virus is a swine-origin triple-recombinant H3N2 that includes the matrix gene from the 2009 H1N1 virus.

Though patients in other states had animal exposure, or a contact who had animal exposure, Iowa's recombinant H3N2 cases appear to have a human-to-human spread component, according to the statement. The IDPH said spread is so far limited, and no other cases have been identified in the past week.

Symptoms are similar to seasonal flu and include fever, cough, tiredness, body aches, and loss of appetite, according to the IDPH. None of the patients were seriously ill, and all have recovered.

Dr Patricia Quinlisk, IDPH medical director, said in the statement that the seasonal flu vaccine may offer some protection against the novel strain, and she stressed the importance of personal protective measures such as covering coughs and sneezes and staying home when sick.

Because the virus is unique, the IDPH said it is increasing surveillance for it through clinics and emergency rooms.

The cases appear to push the nation's total to 10 triple-recombinant H3N2 cases reported since September. On Nov 4 the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said it confirmed the sixth and seventh cases, in patients in Maine and Indiana. Cases have also been detected in Pennsylvania.

Though rare, the swine-origin flu infections in humans can occur, especially after close contact with swine.

The CDC, however, has said that it doesn't expect the seasonal flu vaccine to protect against the novel strain. Swine-origin viruses have shown sensitivity to antiviral drugs oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and zanamivir (Relenza), it said.

http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/cidrap/conten ... swine.html

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:52 pm 
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A novel strain of the influenza virus has been detected in three children in Webster and Hamilton Counties, according to the Iowa Department of Public Health. The virus has also been detected in other states in recent months. Symptoms are similar to the regular seasonal flu and include fever, cough, tiredness, body aches and loss of appetite.

This virus contains components of human, avian, H1N1, and swine influenza. All cases have been determined to have spread through human to human contact.

Because the virus is unique, IDPH has increased surveillance for the strain--identified as influenza A/H3N2--at clinics and emergency rooms.

Officials say the seasonal flu vaccine may offer some protection against this novel strain, but it is not included in this year's flu shot.

No serious illness or death has been reported in connection with the A/H3N2 virus, and those who contracted it have recovered.

For more information on the virus, visit http://www.idph.state.ia.us/Cade/Influe ... pg=FluHome

http://www.kwqc.com/Global/story.asp?S=16105285

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 11:08 pm 
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http://www.recombinomics.com/News/11231 ... C_HYH.html

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:41 am 
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http://www.recombinomics.com/News/11231 ... U18_9.html

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 2:14 am 
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niman wrote:
Though rare, the swine-origin flu infections in humans can occur, especially after close contact with swine.


http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/cidrap/conten ... swine.html

The above quote should disqualifying CIDRAP as a legitimate news source.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 2:24 am 
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some more details about surveillance in Iowa

http://www.messengernews.net/page/conte ... l?nav=5010


Quote:
"They do routine swabbing of anybody that presents with influenza-like illnesses, and they found a novel strain," Kari Prescott, Webster County Health Department executive director, said. "With that, we just need to make sure that we take some proactive activities to make sure that these are just isolated cases."

In response, the Webster County Health Department is increasing its surveillance, Prescott said.

"We've contacted Trinity Regional Medical Center. We're working with their emergency department. We're working with Trimark Family Practice. And we are working with the pediatricians in town, so any child that presents with influenza-like influences [sic, or in this case, sick], they will do a swab on them to check for this novel strain," she said.

Nobody needs to be alarmed, Prescott said.

"It's flu. It's just a new strain," she said.

Prescott said that the main concern is that this particular strain of virus is new.

"We don't know a lot about it," she said. "There have been a couple cases. We just want to make sure we're ahead of the eight ball, rather than following it. We want to make sure these cases are just isolated."

The Webster County Health Department is on heightened awareness, Prescott said, actively monitoring the new strain to see how prevalent it is in the area.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 2:34 am 
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Tex wrote:
some more details about surveillance in Iowa

http://www.messengernews.net/page/conte ... l?nav=5010


Quote:
"They do routine swabbing of anybody that presents with influenza-like illnesses, and they found a novel strain," Kari Prescott, Webster County Health Department executive director, said. "With that, we just need to make sure that we take some proactive activities to make sure that these are just isolated cases."

In response, the Webster County Health Department is increasing its surveillance, Prescott said.

"We've contacted Trinity Regional Medical Center. We're working with their emergency department. We're working with Trimark Family Practice. And we are working with the pediatricians in town, so any child that presents with influenza-like influences [sic, or in this case, sick], they will do a swab on them to check for this novel strain," she said.

Nobody needs to be alarmed, Prescott said.

"It's flu. It's just a new strain," she said.

Prescott said that the main concern is that this particular strain of virus is new.

"We don't know a lot about it," she said. "There have been a couple cases. We just want to make sure we're ahead of the eight ball, rather than following it. We want to make sure these cases are just isolated."

The Webster County Health Department is on heightened awareness, Prescott said, actively monitoring the new strain to see how prevalent it is in the area.

Lots of sites do swabing, but most don't do sub-typing, which is why it has taken this long to report a cluster without "swine exposure".

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2011 2:49 am 
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http://www.recombinomics.com/News/11231 ... _Myth.html

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