I am compelled to remind all of our readers how Baxter Worldwide admitted to trying to distribute H5N1 Bird Flu contaminated vaccines last year in their seasonal flu vaccine. I do not mean to suggest this has happened again, but knowing the past makes me suspicious of the present. – ed
Western Ukraine was hit by a severe epidemic of unidentified influenza, tentatively diagnosed by doctors as viral pneumonia. The number of dead has climbed dramatically. Doctors advise Western Ukrainians to stay at home and use preventive medication. The first pedestrians wearing face masks have been seen on Lviv streets
Lviv kindergartens and schools have been closed, and the city council is to have its emergency session soon to address the flue outbreak. So far, the information released by the authorities on the epidemic dimensions spread and preventive measures is scarce, causing panic to spread in the city.
Here are the latest reports on the situation in other W.Ukraine oblasts:
As the number of sick persons increases, the authorities describe the situation as rather serious, says Ternopil oblast chief medical officer Bohdan Onyskiv.
“In all, 262 patients are treated in hospitals, of these 16 in serious condition. !* children have died in rural areas and 70 in Ternopil,” he says.
Onyskiv confirmed that they died from viral pneumonia.
The main cause of their death is that sick Ukrainians were too late requesting medical help, most of them on the 5th or 6th day of the disease. They stayed at home, trying to treat themselves, visiting hospitals when it was too late. The disease has a distinct viral nature, complicating treatment, he added.
Five persons have died from the flue in Lviv, four men and one woman, says emergency hospital chief doctor Myron Borysevych.
Two of the dead patients were in the 22-35 age group, with 2 others over 60. He diagnosed the disease as viral pneumonia.
“We have sent the analyses to Kyiv. We don’t believe it’s the swine flue. Neither do we know what kind of pneumonia it is,
Borysevych stressed. Viral tests can last from one to two weeks. They are complicated and not done in Lviv. The course of the disease was very quick. The symptoms included very high temperature and short-wind cough.
The disease started as an ordinary chill with headache and temperature. The symptoms lasted for a week before patient condition began to aggravate.
A man has died from the swine flue in Volovets. He has recently returned from Saint Petersburg, Russia, suffering from a cold. He was rushed to the hospital when pneumonia symptoms were found by doctors. Another local who came from Moscow became sick and went to see his doctor in time. Now he is recovering safely.
All the six dead young people had symptoms of severe hemmorhagic pneumonia. The disease starts slowly, with temperature rising to 37.2 – 37.3 degrees, slight cough and pain in joints. Nasal catarrh developed at the end of the second or third day. Autopsy revealed that the lungs were soaked with blood, the oblast chief specialist said.
The number of persons with common flue in Chernivtsi has grown from 2,623 to 4,053. According to the local medical authorities, the city has been hit by an unknown type of the flue. The tests to identify the virus will be ready only in 2 weeks, doctors say.