Swine Flu or H1N1 is a viral infection resulting in flu symptoms. The characteristic name for the disease is the similarity with symptoms of respiratory infection in the case of pigs. The disease came into the limelight in 2009, with an H1N1 pandemic infecting millions worldwide.

Preventative measures such as vaccines and early swine flu containment have played a vital role in recovery from H1N1. However, the risk of H1N1 infection requires awareness regarding the importance of H1N1 tests and diagnosis. Faster identification of symptoms of the disease can help you find better approaches for treatment. In this article, let us learn more about the importance of the swine flu test.

Origins of the H1N1 Virus

H1N1 is a category of influenza or flu viruses that can affect the upper or lower respiratory tract. The earliest example of a strain of the H1N1 virus is the flu pandemic of 1918, which infected around 500 million people worldwide. The Spanish flu has been considered the same as swine flu on many occasions. However, the new strain of H1N1 discovered in April 2009 resulted in a global pandemic again.

The new strain spread faster throughout the United States, where it was first detected, and worldwide. Apparently, younger people did not have the immunity required against the virus, so millions were infected. The World Health Organization (WHO) claimed the pandemic ended in August 2010. On the other hand, people are still at risk of H1N1 and could spread the disease. The fatal nature of H1N1 infection emphasizes awareness of symptoms and appropriate tests.

How Can You Develop an H1N1 Infection?

The most common cause of H1N1 is a viral infection. Swine flu is a contagious disease that spreads from one person to another. When the infected person coughs or sneezes, they release droplets. People in the vicinity who inhale the droplets are likely to get the infection. In addition, people can get infected by the H1N1 virus by touching contaminated surfaces and then touching their noses, eyes, or mouth. It is important to remember that you would not get the H1N1 infection by consuming pork.

How Can You Identify H1N1 Infection?

Before you go for the H1N1 test, you must know about the symptoms. Early identification of symptoms could help you determine whether you need to test for H1N1 infection. The problem with the H1N1 virus is that it results in symptoms of regular flu, which manifest within three to seven days of exposure to the virus. Here are some of the early symptoms of H1N1 infection.

  • Fever
  • Sore throat
  • Headache
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Cough
  • Body aches

The symptoms of H1N1 could vary significantly in the case of babies and children. For example, fever, rash, trouble breathing, confusion, or waking up.

What is Included in the Swine Flu Test?

Doctors can diagnose H1N1 infection with a series of diagnostic tests for identifying evidence of the infection in your body. The H1N1 test includes nasal and throat swab tests, routine blood tests, and an X-ray of your chest. Doctors could also recommend a complete blood count or CBC test to determine whether patients have contracted the H1N1 virus. Patients can expect either positive or negative test results for H1N1 infection. Negative test results indicate the possibility of regular seasonal flu, while positive test results imply the necessity of immediate treatment for swine flu.

Procedure for Swine Flu Test

The first recommended step in the H1N1 or swine flu test is the throat or nasal swab. The rapid flu test on the sample collected from patients can reveal the presence of influenza type A or type B virus. Doctors would test the nasal or throat swab with different virus isolation tests and assays. One of the most important tests for H1N1 is the Reverse Transcriptase-Polymerase Chain Reaction Test or (RT-PCR) test.

In some cases, the initial swab tests might lead to inconclusive results. So, doctors could recommend other tests such as CBC and routine blood tests. In addition, X-rays of the chest and other imaging tests are required to check the possible risks of other health complications, such as pneumonia.

Rely on Professional Health Service Providers for H1N1 Tests

The importance of the H1N1 test is evident in the severity of swine flu symptoms. Even if you may feel that you have regular seasonal flu, the complications of H1N1 infection can create problems for you. So, you must rely on trusted healthcare providers and testing services to check for H1N1 infection.

The comprehensive procedures involved in testing for H1N1 could ensure that you can identify the right course of treatment on time. One of the advantages of professional health service providers is access to the advice of qualified medical experts for diagnosis. It’s time to learn more about the recommended treatment for H1N1 infection right now.

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