SWINE FLU; AN EXPERIENCE AT A TERTIARY CARE HOSPITAL IN RAWALPINDI
Swine Flu; A Local Experience
Keywords:Real time polymerase chain reaction, Swine Flu
Objective: To determine the cases of swine flu in a tertiary care hospital in Rawalpindi.
Study Design: Cross-sectional descriptive study.
Place and Duration of Study: This study was carried out at Combined Military Hospital Rawalpindi from December 2010 to February 2011.
Patients and Methods: The probable cases having a temperature more than 1000F or 37.80C with cough or sore throat in the absence of a known cause other than influenza were referred by the consultant physicians to the clinical laboratory of this hospital for testing H1N1 by real time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) on throat swabs. The throat swab samples were collected under the supervision of a consultant pathologist, the samples were immediately immersed in viral transport medium and RT- PCR was carried out at National Institute of Health Islamabad.
Results: During the study period a total of 89 cases were sampled, out of these 49 (55%) were males and 40 (45%) females. The age range was from 6 days to 73 years, representing an extremely skewed age distribution defying a reasonable summary measure. A total of 33 cases (37%) were positive. Three deaths of the positive cases with mortality of 9.09% was seen.
Conclusion: Swine flu has emerged as a new challenge to the whole world and an RT-PCR based positive rate of 37% marks the need for considering it in the differential diagnosis of influenza like illness.