[OutVoice] Off topic from Ed with some advice related to the emerging Flu epidemic

ed at edmannix.com ed at edmannix.com
Sun Apr 26 18:18:11 EDT 2009

I know this is off-topic but I talked with my oldest and dearest friend 
today and he suggested I write to all our close college friends. I did, 
then I realized I should share it as I can. FYI, my first career almost 40 
years ago was as an R.N. and I've always stayed abeast of trends in 
health care. I'm no expert or even a current health care professional, 
so take it as you will.  Ed Mannix

Hi all:

It is not my way to be alarmist but this emerging flu epidemic is very 
real. Please go out NOW and buy hand sanitizer -- it will be gone from 
the shelves in the next 24 hours. Be a role model and wash your hands 
often. Especially in front of those around you.

The government is understandably having a difficult time trying to 
explain the issues; so, let me try among friends...

This virus is not a killer. We all get colds and the flu from time to time. 
Our bodies have plenty of immmune anti-bodies to fight thngs and at 
least tamp it down to a fever and aches. Generally, older people and 
very young children or those with copmpromised immune systems get 
opportunitistic secondary infections, leading to pneumonia. The first-
line treatment is antibiotics in those cases. But antibiotics will not be of 
use with this outbreak. It is attacking healthy adults.

For some reason, this virus is causing an extreme immune response 
in the most vigorously healthy and robust people. Their bodies are 
reacting so disproportionately, it's as if they killed a roach with a sledge 
hammer. These healthy adults are then getting a sterile pneumonia, i.e 
their own body fluids are flooding their lungs-- quickly. This is totally 
unprecedented on a large scale. 

We are fortunate in NYC that we have ample stocks of Tamiflu and 
respirators -- respirators are used to force oxygen past the fluid while 
the body naturally re-absorbs it. Sadly, may under-developed countries 
do not have those luxuries and this may prove devastating. At the 
same time, those in our own rural areas may delay too long to get 
treatment in time. We are, afterall, talking about otherwise healthy and 
invulnerable adults.

So, do your part. Wash your hands. Keep sanitizer nearby. Share it 
with those around you. Be a role model. That's a good thing!

Take care.



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