Swine Flu and Boomers: Age May Be On Our Side

Every day, there's more bad news about the swine flu. My sister, who works at a school, told me yesterday that her school was the first on Long Island to be closed. (She enjoyed a healthy day off, needless to say). Many more will follow, no doubt. It makes me wonder when the spread of this flu will all be contained and no longer pose a threat.

I just came across some interesting information for us Boomers. Seems that this flu may be less severe for those of us born before 1957. (It's no wonder that 37 percent of people hospitalized with this swine flu are between 19 and 49. In fact, the median age of a person hospitalized with the new flu is just 19!)

Seems that every year since 1918, the H1N1 virus circled the globe, mutating and changing along the way. By 1957, a new pandemic was born - and the new virus took the place of the old one. Scientists seems to think that if you were exposed to this bug before it mutated into a new one (in 1957), then your body is able to have some sort of reaction to it with antibodies that actually neutralize this "new" flu. Dr. Daniel Jernigan, the deputy director of the Influenza Division at the Center for Disease Control, said that the futher back you go in time, the more likely it is that you've been exposed to H1N1 virus.; thus the antibodies to fight it now.

Wishing continued health to us all...and since flu can hit at any time, don't forget to follow all the general rules when it comes managing the flu.


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