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What Is the History of the 1918 Flu Pandemic?

In order to go about the swine flu preparedness we can learn from other pandemics such as the 1918 flu pandemic. The 1918 flu pandemic, also called the Spanish flu, was one of the most devastating things to be experienced by humans, killing more people than the 4 years of the bubonic plague and WWI. About a third of the world’s population was infected with this influenza virus. The Spanish flu is a derivative of the influenza A virus as is the swine flu, that is why it is so important to understand the history of the 1918 flu pandemic for swine flu preparedness. Influenza type A is a that is highly virulent in humans but not so much in pigs, which explains its rapid and continuous spread in the 1918 flu pandemic. The Spanish flu seemed to kill and infect many younger individuals placing them at greater risk for death and the 2009 H1N1 swine flu is following this same trend.

1918 Flu Pandemic

There are a few types of flu vaccinations that can be given. There is the typical “flu shot” that is the needle in the arm vaccination most of us recognize. This type of flu shot is made with an inactivated flu virus. There is also a newer nasal spray flu “shot” and is made with a live, weakened virus that supposedly does not cause sickness. This type of shot is only suggested for those ages 2 to 49. It is important to consult with your doctor about the different types of flu vaccinations to decide which one, if any, is the best one for you.

The information supplied in this article is not to be considered as medical advice and is for educational purposes only.