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View Diary: Flu Stories: Is the Internet At Risk In A Pandemic? (120 comments)

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  •  Rewriting History to Prove a Point? (0+ / 0-)

    If you look at the debate that went on at the highest levels of government on how to respond to the Swine Flu, you would see there was nothing approaching 100% certainty.  

    They were balancing the uncertain probability with the potential for a catostrophic impact (if it followed the path of the 1918 flu virus.)

    And while there was some thought at that time that the 1918 pandemic virus had come from pigs, it has been confirmed more recently that it likely evolved directly from an avian flu virus without ever combining with a human virus in a mixing vessel like pigs.

    SARS was stopped through a massive effort and at considerable cost.  It was also not infective until after symptoms began to show, unfortunately not the case with H5N1, which can be transmitted for a day or more before the carrier even begins to show symptoms.

    If these characteristics (and others like the current 60-80% mortality rate) are carried over to any form of the virus that happens to achieve pandemic form, any preparation we do now will help but will seem inadequate in hindsight.

    Think of the constitution as a levy. Think of our democracy as New Orleans.

    by Into The Woods on Wed Feb 14, 2007 at 11:59:26 AM PST

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    •  So we're all doomed? (0+ / 0-)

      You're playing into the panic game the administration plays.

      From the Christian Science Monitor article about flu alarmism.

      Peter Palese, flu scientist at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, told The New York Times in a Nov. 8, 2005, article that H5N1 is a false alarm. The virus has been "around for more than a dozen years, but it hasn't jumped into the human population." The reason? It probably can't. Dr. Palese points to studies of serum collected from rural Chinese populations in 1992. The results indicated that millions of people had natural antibodies to H5N1. This suggests they had been infected and recovered without becoming noticeably or extremely sick - not the outcome one would expect from a virus as feared as this one.

      Investigate now. Impeach later. Then Extradite. Then, something involving wolves...

      by nightsweat on Wed Feb 14, 2007 at 12:15:19 PM PST

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      •  Palese's studiesd are now dated (0+ / 0-)

        and his original reading disputed.

        Seroprevalence studies documented since 2003 do not support mild asymptomatic infection. Alas, not enough countries publish this data, but what we have, we have here.

        "The evidence for widespread asymptomatic infections is just not there,’‘ said Michael Perdue, a World Health Organization scientist working on the global influenza program. "The (more recent) studies that have been done, one of the reasons frankly that I think they haven’t been followed up on, is they haven’t found many positives. You don’t get too excited about all negative serology (blood work)."

        "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

        by Greg Dworkin on Wed Feb 14, 2007 at 12:42:46 PM PST

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