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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Article Home Adult and Senior Health Swine flu

Swine flu

It is also called as Swine influenza, hog flu or pig flu. It is caused by a virus of influenza group called swine influenza virus. This virus usually affects the pigs.

It is mainly seen in individuals who work with pigs. When it is transmitted to the humans it is called zoonotic swine flu. In humans the symptoms are similar to influenza. The flu out break in 2009 called swine flu is due to new strain of influenza A virus sub type H1N1. It can be transmitted from human to human.



It is transmitted from humans to humans through coughing, sneezing and touching the things on which the virus is present like tables, telephone stands etc. It cannot be transmitted through food. The swine flu is contagious in humans for the first five days of illness. In some children it can be contagious for about 10 days.


  • Cover the nose and the mouth with a tissue or clean cloth while sneezing or coughing.
  • Wash hands with soap and water. Use alcohol based hand cleaners.
  • Avoid touching the eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Avoid close contact of those who are infected with the virus.
  • Stay at home from work or school when you are sick.


  • Antiviral drugs can make the illness milder and make you feel better faster and also prevent serious flu complications. The antiviral drugs used are Oseltamivir and Zanamivir.
  • Swine flu in humans can be prevented by vaccination of swine. Farmers and veterinarians are encouraged to use facemask when dealing with infected animals.