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Thread: It's flu season down under...

  1. #1
    *Flashaholic* James S's Avatar
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    Default It's flu season down under...

    And it's nasty this year... Reports look like more than 3x the cases of the year before which was very mild both here and there. They say that our own flu season often follows pretty closely what they see in Australia the season before so it doesn't look like we'll be getting off as easy this year as we have the last few. The figures are here:

    http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wc...ozflu-2007.htm

    So if we peak just 6 months off from our upside down cousins that means the end of january beginning of february are going to be nasty in a lot of places. I'm going to make sure I get my shot by the end of October unless they start telling me things like the strain isn't in it again this year or something stupid like that...

    If it weren't for the fact that I have 2 kids in school now and a wife who actually goes to the hospital and works with sick people I'd never get ill because I work at home But those other factors kind of even things out...
    -James

    E=sqrt((mc^2)^2+(pc)^2)

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    Flashaholic* lightemup's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's flu season down under...

    Yep, I was crook for a week with it, not fun. Now it seems our horses are copping it (Horse Influenza that is )
    A surefire in the hand is worth two in the bush

  3. #3
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    Default Re: It's flu season down under...

    Thanks for the heads-up, James. I work independently but sometimes get contracts at a "corporate box". That's when I get sick too (twice at a health care place, ironically). Darned recirculated air standards are so minimal.

    I'll be looking to get the shot too, but I do most winters. I hope this thread doesn't stir up again the controversy from many folks who claim they only get sick when they do get the shot. It's not that I don't believe it -- every body is different -- it's just, well, y'know...
    Peter

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    *Flashaholic* James S's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's flu season down under...

    I hope this thread doesn't stir up again the controversy from many folks who claim they only get sick when they do get the shot.
    heh, of course it will stir that up, talking about this always does. And usually at least a few posts about perceived dangers of childhood vaccinations and all the rest too.

    I am willing to discount the charges that the flu shot causes the flu because the populations that mostly get it are the populations most in danger of getting the flu in the first place. People that are immune compromised, the otherwise sick, the elderly and the very young. If someone was going to get the flu from the shot it would be those folks and in great enough numbers that would make it obvious what was happening statistically. However, it doesn't work for everyone, and it doesn't provide 100% protection and it takes several weeks to "kick in" even if it's going to work for you and there are strains of flu out there that it wont offer much if any protection from. So it's quite possible to get the shot and then get the flu anyway. But the 2 things are extremely unlikely to be causally related.

    Statistical fact is that getting the shot reduces your changes of getting it significantly and can reduce noticeably the length and level of sickness if you catch it anyway, or get a related strain. I'm not really the target audience of people who's life would be threatened by it, but I have to take care of the kids. I can't do that if I spend 2 days puking my guts out unable to life my head off the bathroom floor and the next week in bed with a high fever unable to do more than moan. Plus I don't want to expose the kids to it and put them in a dangerous situation.

    I've had the real flu, the unable to leave the bathroom flu, the I wish I was dead flu, where you wake up 2 days later in a puddle of your own sweat with only vague memories of thinking how nice and cool the tile floor in the bathroom felt. There is no mistaking a bad cold for the flu. I'll take the shot any day.
    -James

    E=sqrt((mc^2)^2+(pc)^2)

  5. #5
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    Default Re: It's flu season down under...

    Coincidently, I got mine today at work. I've never come down with anything following the shot, but have friends who claim they have. A couple years ago there was a vaccine shortage and I was unable to get it. Well, I got it and it put me down for ~10 days.

    Larry
    So much for not being able to find my happy a** with both hands and a flashlight! (Do not look into Tank Searchlight with remaining eye!)

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    *Flashaholic* CLHC's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's flu season down under...

    Can't afford to be ill being down and out with the flu or any other ailments. Wishing everyone Good Health!

    I remember a friend of mine flying back from Singapore and someone coughed on the plane. He said that greatly disturbed the relative tranquility of everyone there sitting near since it was during the SARS scare!

    Anyhou, does loading up on OTC sundries whether they be homeopathic or otherwise ever really work against preventing one from comming down with the influenza?
    LUX'Ottica

  7. #7
    *Flashaholic* James S's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's flu season down under...

    does loading up on OTC sundries whether they be homeopathic or otherwise ever really work against preventing one from comming down with the influenza
    I dont think so. At least right now if they do, the actual improvement and the noise level in the studies is about the same. I think that echniacea has been throughly proven to have no effect in the last couple of years. The last really big and well designed studies for zinc show the same thing. If there is an effect it is too small to be measured and therefore too small to be useful. Then somebody published a "meta-analysis" of the studies, but they re-compared all the old, small, poorly done studies of the past which were trumped by the newer really large and good studies so I dont consider their every so slightly positive results to be valid. The spray zycam stuff I used to use, but more recent information shows it to be useless also and it's not without risk. Zycam is guilty of some dishonest advertising as far as I"m concerned anyway, a 3x dilution is NOT homeopathic. It still had some of the zinc in it, real homeopathic stuff does not have a single molecule of any active substance in it. So they were actually claiming to be more useless than they were. I think thats kind of funny

    About the only thing I think you can do is to make sure you're getting enough sleep. If you've just had a new baby and sit on an airplane next to someone who's coming down with it, you're pretty much toast between no sleep and really large exposure.

    So get the shot if you're concerned.
    -James

    E=sqrt((mc^2)^2+(pc)^2)

  8. #8
    Flashaholic* Fallingwater's Avatar
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    Default Re: It's flu season down under...

    It's flu season over here too. Guess how I know. *sigh*

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