Influence of inFLUenza

December 8, 1998
Microbiology 3300
Case Study: "The InFLUence of the Influenza"
The patient Terry B. (Case no.19), has acquired the microbial agent Pneumonia Influenza. The patient is a three year old white male with a headache, lethargy and was running a high fever of 39.7 degrees Celsius. He has suffered from a previous illness of infection of the upper respiratory. Due to the fever, he had a systolic of 110 over 75 diastolic; pulse of racy 100. The fever also accounted for abnormal nasal discharge. A viral agent was concluded by the highly irregular hematology. The WBC (white blood count) was at a high for compensation in immunity. A normal WBC is nine-thousand five-hundred, the patient had a total count of twenty-one thousand. The Monocyte count, normally of 7, was at a low 1. The remaining DIFF was typical of any patient suffering from a viral ailment; neutrophils more than doubled at a count of 90 and bands were at 5 (normally 0). The child was on a current medication of a decongestant and Amoxcillin. Amoxcillin has no effect on inhibitting the viral growth of Pneumonia influenza, Rhinovirus, Parainfluenza, Corona and respitory synctial viruses. This also eliminated the disease obviously effecting the respitory tract and the child\'s neurology (lethargy and malaise) form being bacterial or fungal, which is common amongst young children.
A number of viruses cause respitory illness similar to the common cold, but are much more severe in intensity and wit frequently serious, and even fatal, complications. The best known of the group is Influenza (flu) virus. It can cause mild symptoms that are indistinguishable from those of the common cold, but in the more easily recognizable form it is ushered in by fever, cough, and what doctors refer to as malaise--chills, muscle ache, and fatigue. Pneumonia might be defined as any inflamation of the lung tissue itself, but the term is generally applied only to infections of an acute or rapidly developing nature caused by certain bacteria or viruses. The term is generally not used for the tuberculous or fungal infections. Influenza, a viral infection of the respitory tract (air passages) that cause fever, headache, and weakness. Popularly known as "the flu," it is spread by virus infected droplets coughed or sneezed into the air. Influenza usually occurs in small outbreaks, or every few years in epidemics. Out breaks tend to occur in winter; They spread paticulary rapidly through schools and institutions for the elderly. There have been 31 very severe pandemics (epedemics that sweep many countries) that have occurred since 1510. The Most devestating of these pandemics occurred in 1918; it led the death of twenty million people around the world. Rarely is death directly attributable to the influenza virus itself, but rather to complicating bacterial pneumonia or to the failure of vital organs previously weakened by chronic disesase.
There are three main types of the influenza virus, called A,B, and C. A person who has had an attack with the type C virus acquires antibodies (proteins made by the immune system) that provides immunity against the type C virus for life Anyone who has been infected with a certain strand of the type A or B viruse acquires immunity to that strain. Both A- and B-type viruses occasionally alter to prouduce new strains that may be able to dodge or overcome immunity built up from a previous attack, Thus leading to an new infection. The type B virus is fairly stable, but it occasionly alters sufficiently to overcome resistance. The newe strain often cause small outbreaks of infection. The type A virus is highly unstable; new strains arise constantly thruoghout the world. These are the strains that caused the influenza pandemics of this century, most notably the Spanish flu in in 1918, Asian flu in 1957, and Hon Kong flu in 1968.
Pneumonia develops from inhaling infected mucus into the lower respitory passages. The pneumonia coccus is often present in the nasal or throat secretions of healty people, and it tends to be present even more often in the same secretions of an individual with the cold. Under certain conditions these secretions may be aspirated, or inhaled, into the lung. There the bacteria rapidly mulitiply and spreads to infect a sizeable area. As with the common cold, chilling