Swine influenza (also called swine flu, hog flu, and pig flu) refers to influenza caused by
those strains of influenza virus that usually infect pigs and are called swine influenza virus (SIV).
Swine influenza is common in pigs in the midwestern United States (and occasionally in other states), Mexico, Canada, South America, Europe (including the United Kingdom, Sweden, and Italy), Kenya, Mainland China, Taiwan, Japan and other parts of eastern Asia.
Transmission of SIV from pigs to humans is not common. When it results in human influenza, it is called zoonotic swine flu. People who work with pigs, especially people with intense
exposures, are at risk of catching swine flu. In humans, the symptoms of swine flu are similar to those of influenza and of influenza-like illness in general, namely chills, fever, sore throat, muscle pains, severe headache, coughing, weakness and general discomfort.
The 2009 flu outbreak in humans that is widely known as "swine flu" is due to a new strain
of influenza A virus subtype H1N1 that was produced by reassortment from one strain of human influenza virus, one strain of avian influenza virus, and two separate strains of SIV. This
2009 H1N1 strain causes the normal symptoms of influenza, such as fever, coughing and headache.
People who work with poultry and swine, especially people with intense exposures, are at
increased risk of zoonotic infection with influenza virus endemic in these animals, and
constitute a population of human hosts in which zoonosis and reassortment can co-occur.
Signs and symptoms
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in humans the symptoms of
the 2009 "swine flu" H1N1 virus are similar to those of influenza and of influenza-like
illness in general. Symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, body aches, headache, chills
Because these symptoms are not specific to swine flu, a differential diagnosis of probable swine flu requires not only symptoms but also a high likelihood of swine flu due to the person's recent history. For example, during the 2009 swine flu outbreak in the United States, CDC advised physicians to "consider swine influenza infection in the differential diagnosis of patients with acute febrile respiratory illness who have either been in contact with persons with confirmed swine flu, or who were in one of the five U.S. states that have reported swine flu cases or in Mexico during the 7 days preceding their illness onset."
Prevention of human to human transmission
Influenza spreads between humans through coughing or sneezing and people touching something with the virus on it and then touching their own nose or mouth.
Swine flu cannot be spread by pork products, since the virus is not transmitted through food. The swine flu in humans is most contagious during the first five days of the illness although some people, most commonly children, can remain contagious for up to ten days. Diagnosis can be made by sending a specimen, collected during the first five days for analysis.
Recommendations to prevent spread of the virus among humans include using standard infection control against influenza. This includes frequent washing of hands with soap and water or with alcohol-based hand sanitizers, especially after being out in public.
Experts agree that hand-washing can help prevent viral infections, including ordinary influenza and the swine flu virus. Influenza can spread in coughs or sneezes, but an increasing body of evidence shows small droplets containing the virus can linger on tabletops, telephones and other surfaces and be transferred via the fingers to the mouth, nose or eyes. Alcohol-based gel or foam hand sanitizers work well to destroy viruses and bacteria. Anyone with flu-like symptoms such as a sudden fever, cough or muscle aches should stay away from work or public transportation and should contact a doctor to be tested.
Social distancing is another tactic. It means staying away from other people who might be infected and can include avoiding large gatherings, spreading out a little at work, or perhaps staying home and lying low if an infection is spreading in a community. Public health and other responsible authorities have action plans which social distancing actions to request or require depending on the severity of the outbreak.
Source :- Wikipedia