Is The Swine Flu a Pandemic?

The swine flu drama is advancing like wildfire, with the Mexican death count rising steadily and U.S. cases doubling.
Declaring a pandemic is a big official deal.
Will the swine flu become a global pandemic in humans, like AIDS or the "Spanish flu" which killed like 50 million people in 18 months?

asked by Junior in Diseases & Conditions | 1189 views | 10-27-2009 at 10:38 PM

Well it probably will be.

What is a pandemic?

A pandemic is an outbreak of a new infectious disease, which causes serious illness and spreads widely from person to person across more than one geographical region. HIV/Aids can thus be described as a pandemic illness it emerged to infect many people relatively recently. Cancer cannot: it is not by and large caused by infection, and neither is it new.

How does a pandemic differ from an epidemic?

An epidemic occurs whenever the number of cases of a particular disease exceeds the number that would normally be expected. Epidemics of infectious disease can escalate into pandemics, but do not always do so.

Is swine flu going to cause a pandemic?

Probably. Professor Roy Anderson, a leading epidemiologist who is also Rector of Imperial College, London, said yesterday that he considers a pandemic is already under way the question that remains is how serious it will be. Many scientists were saying the same thing privately even before the World Health Organisation raised the threat level to phase 5 on Wednesday, indicating that it considers a pandemic to be imminent.

answered by Cache | 10-27-2009 at 10:39 PM

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