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Flu Strain Resistant to Leading Flu Treatment

Tamiflu, Leading Drug Treatment, Fails to Fight Most Common Flu Strain

Jan. 9, 2009

 Preliminary tests reveal that the dominant flu strain in the country is resistant to the leading drug used to treat it, public health officials say.

Tamiflu, the most commonly used "anti-viral" drug -- one that many families have stockpiled against an outbreak of the much-feared "bird flu" -- seems ineffective this year against treating the most common form of influenza.
Doctors are struggling to understand why 99 percent of the H1N1 flu strain no longer responds to Tamiflu.
"This is unnerving. It's not as though we overused Tamiflu, but there was a mutation and all of a sudden this strain became the dominant strain all over the country," said Dr. William Schaffner.
It is not unusual for the odd flu strain to become resistant to Tamiflu. What is unusual, and so concerning to doctors, is that a drug-resistant strain has become the most common flu strain that is making people sick.
"Now that we don't have a drug to easily treat them, there will be more hospitalizations. And yes, there could be more deaths," Dr. Greg Poland told ABC News.
And to make matter worse, said Poland: "This particular strain that we're talking about has an increased propensity to cause pneumonia in the people it infects. So we sort of have a double whammy."
The Centers for Disease Control has warned doctors not to use Tamiflu unless local labs indicate the influenza in their specific community will actually respond to the drug.
But that can be an issue in rural areas or in emergency rooms where that level of diagnostic testing is not readily available. Anti-virals must be administered with the first 48 hours after symptoms begin.
The only well-tested alternative to Tamiflu is the anti-viral drug Ralenza, which is a "dry powder inhaler" that many patients find difficult to use. Some people are told not to use it at all, including people with chronic respiratory conditions like asthma, pregnant women and children younger than age 7.
Less than 10 percent of flu patients each year are treated with an anti-viral drug. In most cases, the case of flu gets better on its own. But doctors emphasize that those who are prescribed a medication are the sickest of patients who need an effective anti-viral.
On average, 36,000 Americans die from the flu each year in the United States, according to the CDC, and more than 200,000 are hospitalized.
Fortunately, this flu season, which typically begins in the U.S. in November and lasts through March, is off to a mild start. According to the Centers for Disease Control, no state has yet reported widespread influenza outbreaks.
But doctors warn that could change at any time. With the leading flu treatment now ineffective, doctors say the focus should be on flu prevention. And this is one year when there is an ample supply of flu vaccine.
Source: ABC World News, By John McKenzie, Jan. 9, 2009
Dr. Iverson's Comment
Holy Flu Virus Batman!!  Never did they see this one coming! 
It is not good news for our modern advances in medicine, supposedly the most sophisticated in human history.  One more advocate for the old adage, “You cannot improve on Mother Nature!” 
If an epidemic mounts that is as serious as anything that happened in the world flu of 1918, we could see devastation that makes deaths from terrorism, wars, and natural disasters seem small in comparison.
So what is one to do?  We must look back to nature and give great adherence to the recommendation at the end of the article saying we must put focus on the prevention of acquiring the flu. 
1)    Avoid public enclosed areas where people are congregating that may be sick; especially gyms, airplanes, movie theaters, public transportation etc.  Especially if an outbreak happens!
2)    Wash your hands!  Seems simple but we must be aware that we inadvertently touch our eyes, and nose and mouth all the time, as well as touching surfaces that others touch. 
3)    Keep hydrated!  Water and herbal teas;  conscientious to make extra attention to this if you drink coffee, alcohol, black tea, juices, sodas and other dehydrating drinks.  Water keeps mucus more thin which is a less favorable environment for viruses to live in.
4)    Avoid foods that are mucus forming, particularly dairy products, wheat products, soy products, and sugar of all types.  Don’t overeat and put special emphasis on foods that are easy to digest and spicy in nature.  I really like the Asian types of hot soups and of course good ole fashioned chicken soup (with the vegetables minus the noodles (unless they are rice) and add onions, garlic, and a little cayenne.
5)    Get plenty of rest!  Sleep cannot be underestimated for its ability to balance the body.
6)    Keep happy and keep stress far away as possible.  Stress releases hormones in the body that can depress immunity further.
7)    If you are around those that are sick or start to feel something coming on, immediately seek a health minded practitioner to get on a program boosting up Nature's antiviral medicinal plants as found in our powerful VIREX ELIMINATOR!  Also boost up nutritionals containing vitamins A and C as well as vitamin D.  Some of you may have read how taking a daily supplemental vitamin D during the winter months has proven beneficial in prevention of the flu and colds.
8)    Make sure that you are eliminating properly!  Especially do not get backed up with constipation.  Please see a health minded practitioner if this is a problem.  Colonics can be a nice addition to assist the body in detoxification.
9)    Hydrotherapy is excellent for stimulating circulation and the immune system’s ability to engulf viruses and bacteria.  I highly will recommend saunas, hot baths and showers followed with cool rinses and repeated several times to stimulate circulation.
10) Diffuse anti-microbial essential oils in the home during the entire flu season.  We highly suggest using Herbal Breeze, which we have available (and diffusing throughout the day) at our office, or any essential oils similar.
These are just a few of Nature’s arsenal that are available to health minded individuals that are concerned about the possibility of a flu outbreak.  It is just sound advice for staying healthy from communicable illness in general. 

We don’t have to stand by feeling powerless and watch it happen!  Stand strong with a healthy immunity!  

Be Well!

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