Don’t panic over H1N1: Pune officials

With symptoms being similar to seasonal flu, swine flu might go undetected

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Terming the panic over detection of H1N1 cases as unnecessary, state officials said that citizens should expect to see stray cases of swine flu reported this season. In fact, as seasonal flu cases have spurted, officials said that it is likely that patients having swine flu infection may even go undetected as symptoms of H1N1 infection and seasonal flu are similar.

“Swine flu is part of the viral climate and endemic to the city. This season is conducive to spread of viral infections and if there are a few stray cases reported, it should come as no surprise. People must understand that there is nothing alarming if someone tests positive for H1N1 infection,’’ said Dr Pradeep Awate, state epidemiologist and in-charge of swine flu cases across state.

Even as a 21-year-old man from Bhosari tested positive for H1N1 on Tuesday, officials of Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation said that he is stable. Since June, H1N1 virus has infected 27 people across the state, including the lone case in Pune this month.

Prior to this case, last H1N1 case reported in Pune was on May 10, when a 34-year-old man from Vadgaonsheri tested positive.

Meanwhile, doctors said while H1N1 poses barely any threat to people, they should take basic precautions and vaccinate themselves.

“The most important thing is not to self medicate as the symptoms of H1N1 and seasonal flu are similar. Secondly, follow all basic precautions such as maintaining hygiene, washing hands and eating healthy food. There is no need to panic over H1N1 as it is just another influenza infection,’’ said Shivajinagar-based family physician Dr Avinash Bhondwe.

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