What is the swine flu?

What is swine flu?

Swine Influenza, also called swine flu, is a respiratory disease of pigs caused by type A influenza viruses. Outbreaks of swine flu happen regularly in pigs. People do not normally get swine flu, but human infections can and do happen. Most commonly, human cases of swine flu happen in people who are around pigs but it’s possible for swine flu viruses to spread from person to person also.

Is swine flu the same as seasonal flu?

No. Seasonal flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by human influenza viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness and at times can lead to death. Human flu viruses change a little bit every year which is why people can get sick from the flu more than once. It is also why a new flu vaccine is produced each year; the vaccine must be made to protect against the particular viruses circulating that year.

Human and swine flu viruses are different. People who get vaccinated for human flu can still get sick from swine flu. Pigs that have been vaccinated for swine flu can still get sick from human flu. Symptoms of swine flu in people are no different from symptoms that people get when they are infected with human flu viruses. People infected with flu typically have fever (often high), cough, body aches, headaches, fatigue and runny or stuffy nose. Vomiting and diarrhea may also occur.

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