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The Worst Epidemic Yet. [Bird Flu]


The_Mix_Breed
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In 1918, the influenza viruse kill over 600,000 people in america. It was the worst epidemic in American history. The AIDS epidemic yes was terriable, but it was nothing compared to the influenza. You could be healthy one morning, someone breaths on you that afternoon, and that your dead. That's how fast it spread and killed. But we stopped that strain from destroying our country and we now our vaccinated for many strains of the flu so it doesn't happen again.

But. . .

Tuesday, May 9, at 8 pm a new movie aired for the first time. What if the bird flu mutated like the 1918 influenza? Currently, we can only catch it from birds, we can pass it to more humans, but what if it changed? The regular influenza is constantly mutating, why can't the bird flu? If it does, it'll kill at least 300,000 people in a month. It's that deadly, and there is no cure. No antibiotic, or vaccination. Nothing. We have no leads on how to stop it and it'c coming? When will we face it? What will we do when that time comes? Who knows.

Thoughts?


Oh, if this scares you, don't be to worried. They are trying to find a cure and they have plans if it does mutate. It's not 100% that thousands will die. I hope this doesn't scare people.
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You really should nto worry about this. I mean think about it. There are about a trillion different species of creature on this planet. Sure it could mutate but to our species? Well yo ucan see the odds. Anyway if it does shoe up big deal. I mean there always has to be a plauge eventually right? It's better to get it over with(your gonna die anyway why not this way?). Also my philosophy is to cross that bridge when you get to it. So when I meet the guy who gives me the diasease then I will worry till then ill just sit here and glare at my new wallpaper of Cameron Diaz(Droolz).
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[quote name='Avenged666fold']You really should nto worry about this. I mean think about it. There are about a trillion different species of creature on this planet. Sure it could mutate but to our species? Well yo ucan see the odds. Anyway if it does shoe up big deal. I mean there always has to be a plauge eventually right? It's better to get it over with(your gonna die anyway why not this way?). Also my philosophy is to cross that bridge when you get to it. So when I meet the guy who gives me the diasease then I will worry till then ill just sit here and glare at my new wallpaper of Cameron Diaz(Droolz).[/quote][COLOR=Sienna]

Oh yes. That's a great stratagy. I mean, it's only a pandemic the likes of which hasn't been seen in a century, and it could only kill millions of people, what's there to worry about?

The bird flu is indeed disturbing, and hopefully the significantly-smarter-than-us scientists can develope a vaccination, because if they don't the West will be in quite a lot of trouble. The East is already suffering right now as it is, it would be disasterous of the same thing happened hear. Everything would be out of wack. The work force would be decimated and the economy of the entire world would suffer greatly. I trust the men in white... but I still don't wanna get a frickin' needle >.>[/COLOR]
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I hold no fear for a mutated form of bird flu. Infact, I hold no fear for any disease, because I know it all part of the Natural Selection of life, and it will only make the human race stronger, so if something kills me, it will be better for humanity in the long run. Eventually humans will adapt to fend off the virus, so it is just a matter of time, albiet a very long matter of time, until the whole thing is forgotten about.

Majority of the worry about bird flu has been caused by the media hyping the worries and inciting paranoia in a lot of people and who don't understand fully how small the dangers actually are at the moment.
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All I see over the internet is AHHHHHHHH WERE ALL GONNA DIEEEE BIRD FLUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU. Yea whatever people like to panic over nothing. So im pretty sure this is just something that will pass. Just like S.A.R.S killing million's of people in the U.S> So calm the hell down Mr Orangewriting.
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[quote name='SkyBlu']I hold no fear for a mutated form of bird flu. Infact, I hold no fear for any disease, because I know it all part of the Natural Selection of life, and it will only make the human race stronger, so if something kills me, it will be better for humanity in the long run. [/quote][SIZE=1]How so? Now that?s just silly. How would taking your life benefit humanity? There'd only be triple the births during the time of your death so actually that?s a wasteful thought. It is inevitable whether epidemics occur, that we will always be populating. Besides, I don't want to die and most people don't, you have the right to live as a human being. We're not barbarians where we let people die to keep the population down, at least from my perspective.

As far as the bird flu, I do agree with not being paranoid over the bird flu just take it into fact that it does have potential. As far as I know, it's never reached California yet just West Nile virus. There are a lot of diseases going around now, and if you?re worried about catching anything that would be vital to your health, just take it easy. Don't pet chickens on your way home from school and maybe you won't run the risk of getting the bird flu. For now, all we can say is that it HASN'T mutated but it could. The fact that it can grow contagious interests me because that makes it much worse. All you can do is wait it out.

BTW, S.A.R.S is still in Asia to this day. I'm sure most people don't even know they have it since it?s said to be very hard to diagnose.[/SIZE]
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[FONT=Georgia]I personally think that movie is irresponsible and fear mongering. I've seen clips of it...honestly, it was poorly acted, stupid, melodramatic, and totally premature. Does anyone remember Y2K? all the commercials (there was one for a car that said if your electricity goes out from Y2K, you can watch TV in your car!), news reports, people buying tons of powdered milk from the grocery store? Nothing. Happened.

But it was the same kind of media hype.

Until bird flu is [i]actually a threat[/i] I will get vaccinated. Now, it's not. There's no use giving yourself an ulcer over what "might" be. [/FONT]
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[COLOR=DarkSlateBlue]Well first of all I think it?s obvious that a movie is going to take a few facts and then present a worst-case scenario. Otherwise what would be the point? I?m quite sure that the movie is loaded with scare tactics designed to get more attention. Honestly I would find a documentary about bird flu far more scary since it would likely be based more on facts than on Hollywood drama.

Although two teams of scientists announced that they had reproduced the 1918 Spanish flu virus and found it to be a bird flu, I think that if it did break out it would not be the same as it was back in 1918.

For one thing back then we didn?t have antibiotics or viral medications or other forms of treatment for diseases. The flu may be viral but often people are killed by pneumonia or other complications caused by the flu that although initially viral later end up being bacterial as well and proper treatment can halt the disease especially if someone is treated quickly enough. So I suspect that improvements in medicine will help to keep it from being an all out disaster. Not that it wouldn?t be terrible, just that without modern medicine it would probably be a hundred times worse.

I suspect the biggest factor that would cause it to be another epidemic if it were to mutate and become highly contagious, is the lack of doses of the viral medicines Tamiflu and Relenza for treating people. I understand that the government of many countries is moving to secure enough doses to treat people but that right now they only have enough for about 25% of the population. Here in the USA that is, I don't know about other countries.[/COLOR]
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[QUOTE=Aaryanna][COLOR=DarkSlateBlue]Well first of all I think it?s obvious that a movie is going to take a few facts and then present a worst-case scenario. Otherwise what would be the point? I?m quite sure that the movie is loaded with scare tactics designed to get more attention. Honestly I would find a documentary about bird flu far more scary since it would likely be based more on facts than on Hollywood drama.

Although two teams of scientists announced that they had reproduced the 1918 Spanish flu virus and found it to be a bird flu, I think that if it did break out it would not be the same as it was back in 1918.

For one thing back then we didn?t have antibiotics or viral medications or other forms of treatment for diseases. The flu may be viral but often people are killed by pneumonia or other complications caused by the flu that although initially viral later end up being bacterial as well and proper treatment can halt the disease especially if someone is treated quickly enough. So I suspect that improvements in medicine will help to keep it from being an all out disaster. Not that it wouldn?t be terrible, just that without modern medicine it would probably be a hundred times worse.

I suspect the biggest factor that would cause it to be another epidemic if it were to mutate and become highly contagious, is the lack of doses of the viral medicines Tamiflu and Relenza for treating people. I understand that the government of many countries is moving to secure enough doses to treat people but that right now they only have enough for about 25% of the population. Here in the USA that is, I don't know about other countries.[/COLOR][/QUOTE]
[COLOR=Sienna]
I'm not really worried for myself, because I have faith that modern medicine and other precautions will keep me safe and secure. However, places like China and Russia, where there is a rediculous amount of overpopulation and poor living conditions, don't have this luxury. If the flu does muatate - and there's no gauranatee that it will - I'm more worried about what will happen to them. Let's say this virus runs rampant in China and India and places like that, causing massive insability and loss of work force, what will happen to the wests economy? The west cannot survive without it's trading partners in these squalid ****-pits and I'm very worried about them.

Keep in mind this is also a worst-case-scenario, and there is no gaurantee that it will ever come to fruition - there isn't even a reason to think so. I'm just saying bad things may happen and we can't go about this with complacancy.[/COLOR]
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[COLOR=RoyalBlue]The idea of a flu epidemic does scare me. Not that I think it will happen, but because I?ve had the flu before so I know how lethal it really is. Now I know everyone has most likely had the flu at one time, but there is a big difference between the more common flu and the one a flu shot protects you against.

The more common flu is nothing compared to the more lethal strains. I can honestly say it was one of the worst infections I?ve ever had. And in spite of being so sick the hospital didn?t want to take me unless there was no choice since it?s very contagious. Fortunately my doctor put me on an antiviral medicine, which took care of it.

Anyway, the problem with trying to find a cure is that the flu tends to mutate rapidly. So probably the best course of action would be to work on limiting contact with infected birds when possible and to continue working on securing enough doses to treat the population. [QUOTE=Cygnus X-1][COLOR=Sienna]
I'm not really worried for myself, because I have faith that modern medicine and other precautions will keep me safe and secure. However, places like China and Russia, where there is a rediculous amount of overpopulation and poor living conditions, don't have this luxury. If the flu does muatate - and there's no gauranatee that it will - I'm more worried about what will happen to them. Let's say this virus runs rampant in China and India and places like that, causing massive insability and loss of work force, what will happen to the wests economy? The west cannot survive without it's trading partners in these squalid ****-pits and I'm very worried about them.

Keep in mind this is also a worst-case-scenario, and there is no gaurantee that it will ever come to fruition - there isn't even a reason to think so. I'm just saying bad things may happen and we can't go about this with complacancy.[/COLOR][/QUOTE]As for it the economy in the west, in the USA a lot of things use to be made here until cooperation?s started buying overseas since it meant they could make greater profit. It would be a mess for a while, but eventually things would recover. I don?t think surviving is an issue; rather we will simply have to do without luxury items like games, computers and other high tech items. [/COLOR]
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I think for the most part that people have put too much concern into this. I do acknowledge that it is a genuine threat that needs to be dealt with, but I don't believe we are in any immediate threat of a mutaition and mass infection. First off, the cases in the US have been very limited because of quick containment and the all around limitations of the virus. The area it stands most prominent is in the middle east, which is the area in a much more immediate threat of a major out break.

In this country I have enough faith in our polticians to know to cut off all public transit between us and them if the out break should begin. If nothing else, our politicians are great cowards and will cover there own butts pretty quick.

However, the media in this country have done a fabulous job of making every body in this country paranoid about the "eminent" threat to public health and safety. One thing about americans is that they get real scared real fast, and the media exploits that to a great degree.

Am I concerned, a little. I'll admit that it's troubling. But not for the epidemic potential, but rather for the fact that this virus has changed the face of terrorism. Consider it: Now a terrorist need only get through with a dead pigeon and he could kill thousands of people in an airport. The messy works of bombs are over. That is the source of my greatest concern.
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You are aware of the fact that 1918 was quite some time ago? A time where penicillian doesn't even exist and medicine was part voodoo part science. The bird flu won't be anywhere near as bad as the 1918 one.
This isn't even mentioning the fact that the % of people dying is skewed since that's from the people who were so bad off they went to the hospital. It might be much lower since quite a few people could've just gotten over it.
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Personally I'm not even totally convinced about the Existance of said Bird flu. It just looks like a big medai scare to me (at least it does on british media). To me, it seems like The media has got It's teeth into something partially insignificant, and Is blowing it out of all proportion. I wouldn't be surprised if they're after widespread panic.

Although I could be wrong. If I am, then it could be BSE all over again.
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I"m pretty sure we coverd this here before, but for the sake of arguement I'll put my two cents forward again.

I think it's a legitimate problem, blown way beyond out of proportions by a ratings hugry media, and an overly excitable public. Is there a rpblem? Yes. Is it going to change our lives forever? No. The last flu epidemic got out of hand due to the fact of poor handling by medical experts of the time. The system today is far more controlled and any major potential for epidemic will be stopped effectively and efficiently. Just take it easy and steer clear of the middle east and Asia, and don't play with any dead birds, and I'm pretty confident that you and everyone else will be just fine.
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We are only in real trouble when it kills 100 people in a month span. O.o last I heard, it was 6 people over a month span, and those where pretty sketchy.
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as far as i can tell, it isn't easily transmissible yet. If it reaches that point it might kill a good deal of people, but I'm not sure we should be too worried about it. On the people who died, weren't they mostly very poor and already in poor health?
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  • 2 weeks later...
I've been on ?vacation? for a while now, but I think I should step in here.

[quote name='Starwind'] The last flu epidemic got out of hand due to the fact of poor handling by medical experts of the time. [/quote]

Are you kidding me? There's really nothing medicine at the time could have done to prevent the epidemic in 1918. Really there isn't TOO much that we can do to prevent the media-scrutinized strain (H5N1) from spreading if it eventually mutates; as far as medical science is concerned. The most important way to prevent the spreading of [i]any[/i] disease is to minimize contact with those who are infected and to attempt to isolate yourself if you are infected. That?s [i]if[/i] the disease mutates. Researchers have found that the disease is several mutations away from being transferable from human to human. Actually, the current subtypes of influenza are more dangerous than the avian subtypes as some of these strains are only a few mutations from being truly dangerous. So, let?s say worse case it does end up mutating.

Do we have a vaccine? We?re working on it. Some of the antiviral drugs work (with mixed results with oseltamavir and zanamavir, antiviral drugs) and some don?t. I?ve heard talk of penicillin and antibiotics in the news and in this thread- please note that antibiotics are useless against influenza and other viral infections.

We have way more important things to worry about, people. How about world famine (please don?t confuse this with overpopulation)? How about multi-drug resistant TB? How about getting obesity? How about STDs because we can?t keep it in our pants? Drugs? Drunk driving? Cigarettes? All of which have a much higher likelihood of killing you than avian flu does.
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[COLOR=SeaGreen] [quote name='Drix D'Zanth]I've been on ?vacation? for a while now, but I think I should step in here.[/QUOTE]Welcome back. ;) [QUOTE=Drix D'Zanth']I?ve heard talk of penicillin and antibiotics in the news and in this thread- please note that antibiotics are useless against influenza and other viral infections. [/quote]If I wasn?t clear enough the first time with my reference to antibiotics I?ll rephrase it. I was referring to complications like Pneumonia, which can be caused by the flu virus or by bacteria that gets into the lungs when the body's defense system is weakened by the flu. Also while antibiotics are not useful in treating the flu, they may be necessary to clear up a related sinus or ear infection.

Mind you I?m going off of information I?ve read and what my doctor has said when I say that antibiotics are helpful in treating additional complications that were caused by the flu. But not in treating the actual flu virus.

I would imagine that if you did have the flu and later also had complications that were treatable by antibiotics, well as my doctor put it, it would increase your chances of surviving. [/COLOR]
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  • 3 weeks later...
I belive that almost every year, there's a new kind of disease. This type of influenza could mutate into another form so that it could become immune to the vaccines, but that might take a while. I am not completly frightened by the idea of this because it is really nothing new. There's probably going to be many more new diseases that are going to introduced to us each year. As technology advances, then we might be able to kill off the influenza virus, but we would have many more to deal with afterwards.
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