Experts: 45% of H1N1 cases asymptomatic

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Experts contend that rapid influenza diagnostic tests will only identify 55 percent of those with the novel A(H1N1) virus, pointing to the remaining 45 percent of infections that will largely go undetected due to the absence of symptoms, said local media yesterday.

According to Apple Daily, Huang Li-ming, the chief of the pediatric infectious diseases department at the National Taiwan University Hospital (NTUH), said 30 percent of the affected are asymptomatic, while another 15 percent came down with mild signs of the disease such as sore throats and diarrhea, without the presence of fever, which has been considered as a classic symptom of the new strain.

As such, these people are not picked up on thermal cameras at airports and aren’t made to take rapid tests, added Huang, who also doubles as the expert overseeing clinical trials at Adimmune Corp., the sole vaccine manufacturer in Taiwan.

But they are still carriers of the virus, which places them at risk as those around them may be less vigilant.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Director General Steve Kuo seconded the opinion, admitting that this observance breaks the line of defense in epidemic control.

Despite the inability to diagnose those that fall under such a category, Kuo maintained that residents should still develop a habit of measuring their body temperatures daily and

to continue to practice proper self-health care and protection.

But former health minister Yeh Chin-chuan pointed to the bright side and said that for the asymptomatic carrier, it is as if the person had already been inoculated as he or she will have developed the antibodies needed to fight A(H1N1).

Gripe A H1N1

Fale com o Ministério

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