By Sabine Strobel
Soon, influenza viruses will spread again and again. The tricky thing about it: you do not know which order and composition they appear in and how different they are from the previous year. Since the current vaccine is always based on the experiences of the previous year, speculation is always involved in their development. Particularly difficult to assess are strains of Influenzagruppe B.
"It's hard to predict which specific strains of influenza B will appear in one year." Influenza A has always been the same strain, H3N2 and H1N1, but their prevalence has been different, "explains Gunter Weiss, director of the Inner Department of Innsbruck.
Sometimes the virus changes minimally so that virus memory can detect and fight the virus. Sometimes a virus changes more and the immune response works worse. Weiss: "The problem with the vaccine is that it is behind a year later, so to speak."
The vaccine is further limited by its age-related effect. "In children we have 90% vaccinations, in the elderly about 30%," explains Weiss. The good news: If people are sick despite the vaccine, the flu is less severe.
So who should be immunized against influenza? The expert recommends vaccination for chronic patients and the elderly. It is important that members of serious and chronically ill patients be immunized. Weiss: "One is trying to build a certain herd immunity around these people." Even people in medical occupations are regularly offered a vaccine. Here you decide to protect yourself, the family and the governess.
And last but not least, parents repeatedly ask if they should get their child's resilience against the flu. Children suffering from chronic illness, such as asthma, advise Viss to receive a vaccine. Otherwise, this is the case to consider the pros and cons. For example, flu in children can sometimes be severe. Or parents can not accept the fact that their child needs two weeks of home care. "You have to offer parents a talk about risks and benefits," the expert said.
From December to April, influenza viruses will be transmitted again. Flu is still a serious disease. When the onset of the disease usually begins with weakness, joint pain and muscle and sometimes cough. Chills and high fever, even up to 40 degrees, reach him. In contrast, the thermometer rises to influenza infection about 37-37.5 degrees, this infection is accompanied by runny nose, fatigue, throat and headaches. Every year about 5 to 10 percent of the Tyrol population suffers from serious flu.
Influenza diseases in this country hardly ever goes down. "To achieve effective protection, the average injection rate should be 80 percent, at the moment we are between 10 and 15 percent." For people at higher risk of getting the flu or dying, the high vaccination coverage rate will be important, "concludes Weiss. So it needs traffic in all layers of the population.
The development of science is also exciting. As Weiss noted, there is a lot of research going on "how many times can you get flu in life or if you have permanent immunity … and you also want to know how many times you should get a vaccine every year or maybe every other year?" Although this is a common disease, Known.
… fend off pathogens
Virus Protection Co. is to wash your hands several times a day. Sports in moderation (do not overdo) a balanced diet will also arm yourself for the winter. Lack of smoking protects the mucous membranes in the throat.
… thousands of patients with influenza
Every year in our latitudes, five to ten percent of the population swings flu during the cold season. Over 100 people are hospitalized every season at the Innsbruck clinic due to severe flu.
… Flu epidemic during the holidays
Influenza waves occur from December to April. Possible cause: In cold weather, people are more prone to it and they like to move together. In the tropics, influenza occurs all year, in the southern hemisphere in our summer months.
When you sneeze, droplets responsible for the infection has spread within a radius of 1-2 meters. Pathogens are also passed by talking, hawking and touching the doors.
… effect comparison
It is believed that a flu patient infects three to five other people. For measles z. The infection frequency is higher. Here we expect that a sick person infects 13-20 other people.