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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Influenza virus: Sign and symptoms, Diagnosis, Treatment and Prevention


Clinical features / Sign and Symptoms of Influenza:

Flu like characteristics:

1.       Fever
2.       Headache
3.       Running nose
4.       Sore throat
5.       Muscle pain
6.       Cough
7.       Malaise


Diagnosis of Influenza:

Most cases are diagnosed clinically. But lab. tests are available:

1.       Specimen: Nasal or throat washings, nasal or throat swabs and sputum
2.       Tests:  Direct fluroscent antibody, Polymerase chain reaction (PCR), Cell culture.

Treatment of influenza:

Drugs like amantadine and rimantadine.

Prevention of Influenza:

Various types of vaccines are on trial. But complete immunization against influenza is difficult because the virus keeps on changing its structure (changes in antigen occur so antibodies/vaccines do not work). 

However killed formalin inactivated influenza virus vaccine is available and should be taken every year.

Note: In the making of the above article, the following books were used:




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