Swine flu is a relatively new strain of influenza (flu) that was responsible for a flu pandemic during 2009-2010.
Dileep Aththanayaka's insight:
What to do if you have swine flu
People with swine flu typically have a fever or high temperature (over 38C or 100.4F) and may also have aching muscles, sore throat or a dry cough (see symptoms of swine flu). The symptoms are very similar to other types of seasonal flu. Most people recover within a week, even without special treatment.
Contact your GP if you think you have swine flu and you are worried. They will decide the most appropriate action to take.
The National Pandemic Flu Service no longer operates.
Some people are more at risk of complications if they catch flu. People are particularly vulnerable if they have:
chronic (long-term) lung diseasechronic heart diseasechronic kidney diseasechronic liver diseasechronic neurological disease (neurological disorders include motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson's disease)immunosuppression (whether caused by disease or treatment)diabetes mellitus
Also at risk are:
patients who have had drug treatment for asthma in the past three yearspregnant womenpeople who are 65 years of age or over
See preventing swine flu for a full list of people advised to have this year's flu jab.
Preventing the spread of swine flu
The most important way to stop flu spreading is to have good respiratory and hand hygiene. This means sneezing into a tissue and quickly putting it in a bin. Wash your hands and work surfaces regularly and thoroughly to kill the virus.
Anyone who is concerned about flu symptoms should contact their GP, who will determine the most appropriate action to take.
Health Library Wellness Centers are demographic-based and offer magazine-style articles covering health and prevention topics at each stage of life.
Many studies show that Americans consume less than adequate amounts of dietary copper. However, copper deficiency in adults is rare. A deficiency may occur, though, due to certain genetic problems, long-term shortages of dietary copper, or excessive intakes of zinc and iron. In addition,premature infants and infants suffering from malnutrition may have deficiencies of copper. People who have had gastric surgery or have conditions that affect how their bodies absorb nutrients are also at risk for copper deficiency.
Symptoms of copper deficiency include anemia, bone loss, a decrease in certain white blood cells, loss of hair color, and pale skin.
If you are unable to meet your copper needs through dietary sources, copper supplements may be necessary. Copper supplements are usually taken by mouth, but in some cases are given by injection. Your doctor should determine if you need such supplementation.
The Standard is a good English-language news source in Hong Kong. It's been slow to pick up the H7N9 story, but now it's catching up fast with "H7N9 Watch" stories like this one: (H7N9 watch) Shanghai goes into emergency mode.
Menkes Disease (MD) is a rare X-linked recessive fatal neurodegenerative disorder caused by mutations in the ATP7A gene, and most patients are males.
Dileep Aththanayaka's insight:
What is Menkes syndrome?
Menkes syndrome is a disorder that affects copper levels in the body. It is characterized by sparse, kinky hair; failure to gain weight and grow at the expected rate (failure to thrive); and deterioration of the nervous system. Additional signs and symptoms include weak muscle tone (hypotonia), sagging facial features, seizures, developmental delay, and intellectual disability. Children with Menkes syndrome typically begin to develop symptoms during infancy and often do not live past age 3. Early treatment with copper may improve the prognosis in some affected individuals. In rare cases, symptoms begin later in childhood.
Occipital horn syndrome (sometimes called X-linked cutis laxa) is a less severe form of Menkes syndrome that begins in early to middle childhood. It is characterized by wedge-shaped calcium deposits in a bone at the base of the skull (the occipital bone), coarse hair, and loose skin and joints.
Read more about cutis laxa.
How common is Menkes syndrome?
The incidence of Menkes syndrome and occipital horn syndrome is estimated to be 1 in 100,000 newborns.
What genes are related to Menkes syndrome?
Mutations in the ATP7A gene cause Menkes syndrome. The ATP7A gene provides instructions for making a protein that is important for regulating copper levels in the body. Copper is necessary for many cellular functions, but it is toxic when present in excessive amounts. Mutations in the ATP7A gene result in poor distribution of copper to the body's cells. Copper accumulates in some tissues, such as the small intestine and kidneys, while the brain and other tissues have unusually low levels of copper. The decreased supply of copper can reduce the activity of numerous copper-containing enzymes that are necessary for the structure and function of bone, skin, hair, blood vessels, and the nervous system. The signs and symptoms of Menkes syndrome and occipital horn syndrome are caused by the reduced activity of these copper-containing enzymes.
Read more about the ATP7A gene.
How do people inherit Menkes syndrome?
Menkes syndrome is inherited in an X-linked recessive pattern. The gene associated with this condition is located on the X chromosome, which is one of the two sex chromosomes. In males (who have only one X chromosome), one altered copy of the gene in each cell is sufficient to cause the condition. In females (who have two X chromosomes), a mutation would have to occur in both copies of the gene to cause the disorder. Because it is unlikely that females will have two altered copies of this gene, males are affected by X-linked recessive disorders much more frequently than females. A characteristic of X-linked inheritance is that fathers cannot pass X-linked traits to their sons.
In about one-third of cases, Menkes syndrome is caused by new mutations in the ATP7A gene. People with a new mutation do not have a history of the disorder in their family.
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