Middle-aged face higher H1N1 risk: CDC
By Linger Liu, The China Post
February 28, 2013, 12:01 am TWN
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Middle-aged people face the highest risk of contracting the H1N1 flu strain, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) said yesterday.
The CDC added, however, that H1N1 poses a lower threat to children and senior citizens, especially compared to the H3N2 strain.
Thirty-five new flu cases were reported last week, according to the CDC. Of these, 25 were of H3N2 and nine were of H1N1, a relatively lower ratio of H3N2 cases.
The centers said that middle-aged people tend to lack H1N1 antibodies, putting them at higher risk of infection.
CDC Director Chuang Jen-hsiang (莊人祥) said two deaths caused by H1N1 have been reported this month; one a 48-year-old man and the other a 38-year-old woman. Chuang said the two patients already suffered chronic illnesses and did not seek medical treatment early enough.
Chuang said that most primary school pupils and citizens aged 65 or over were vaccinated in the wake of the first H1N1 outbreak, helping keep down infection rates among these age groups.
The director said that, aside from middle-aged people, those with diabetes and cardiovascular disease are also at a higher risk of contracting H1N1. Chuang urged citizens with symptoms such as fever, coughing and sore muscles to consult their doctors.