RKI: The peak of the seasonal flu wave has passed
According to the Influenza Working Group at the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the number of flu diseases has decreased again in the last week. The peak of the seasonal flu wave is apparently over, the experts report. In total, almost 23,500 influenza cases have been registered in this flu season, with 84 deaths being recorded, 76 as a result of swine flu, according to the RKI.
The peak of the seasonal flu wave has been passed In the course of the current flu wave, far fewer deaths have been recorded so far than in the 2009/10 flu season, in which 258 people died from the effects of influenza. Last flu season, the number of influenza diseases had peaked before Christmas and the swine flu causative agent (the H1N1 virus) was responsible for all deaths. The H1N1 virus has also been detected in a large number of flu patients this year, but the seasonal flu wave only peaked at the end of January to early February and is now ebbing significantly again.A total of around 23,500 flu diseases have been registered so far The RKI experts report that 3,500 flu patients with serious symptoms had to be hospitalized. However, the spokeswoman for the RKI, Susanne Glasmacher, pointed out that the actual number of flu diseases could be much higher, since there is no obligation to report seasonal flu and a significant number of unreported cases can be assumed.
Swine flu pathogens are replacing other virus strains The RKI experts report that 84 deaths in the course of the current flu season, 76 of which can be attributed to swine flu. The average age of the deceased was 52 years, according to the RKI. Dr. H1N1 is involved in most diseases, Dr. Winfried Kern from the University Clinic in Freiburg goes back to the fact that in the wake of the swine flu pandemic, the H1N1 pathogens "largely replaced the virus types that had previously been circulating and spread all over the world". But not with the initially suspected catastrophic consequences. Because the H1N1 virus is, according to Dr. Christian Meyer from the Bernhard Nocht Institute (BNI) for tropical medicine in Hamburg has so far not been classified as more dangerous than other pathogens that are also circulating in Germany. If you notice the typical symptoms of flu such as sudden fever, loss of appetite, runny nose, cough, headache and body aches, the best advice is to consult a doctor, the experts advise. If diarrhea, nausea and vomiting occur in addition to the symptoms mentioned, there is probably a swine flu infection.
Flu vaccinations before the flu season ends? Although the seasonal flu wave has peaked, there is still a risk of infection until around April, the RKI spokeswoman said. Therefore, special care should be taken in the upcoming carnival season to avoid infection. Although vaccination recommendations are sometimes made for this flu season, the closer the end of the flu wave comes, the less sense the vaccinations make. Because it takes around two weeks for the vaccination to develop its protective function and a new vaccine will be used for the next flu season, since the flu viruses change quickly and may already be resistant to the active substances of the last vaccination. The experts such as RKI President Professor Dr. Reinhard Burger pointed out that in her opinion the vaccination rates in Germany are far too low. However, due to the recurring reports about possible side effects of the vaccines, the acceptance of flu vaccinations in this country is still relatively low in the population. However, the course of the current flu epidemic seems relatively moderate even without vaccination rates of 50 to 60 percent, as is the rule in Scandinavian countries and, in the opinion of the RKI President Burger, would also be desirable for Germany in the long term.
Alternatives to flu vaccination?
Naturopathy relies on strengthening the immune system to protect against flu and colds. The body's own defense prevents the penetration of unwanted microorganisms, especially pathogenic viruses and bacteria. Recent research in the field of microbiology has shown that countless strains of other bacteria, viruses and fungi are involved in this process. They live in a kind of community and are tolerated because, among other things, they have an immunostimulating function. In this way, microorganisms colonize the skin and mucous membranes and protect them from infections. In order to support this process, naturopathy knows numerous measures to strengthen the immune system. (fp, sb)
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