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Swine flu as a spiney

Neck of Steel CindyNNeck of Steel Cindy Posts: 1,064
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:34 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I'm getting a little ahead of myself here, but I am wondering if any of you have had experience with the swine flu. My daughter was just diagnosed and is fairly sick. Because this is so contagiuos, I am worried that I too will get it. Of course my number one concern is Angie right now, as it should be, but in the back of mine I can't help being concerned that I may get it.

I have a wonderful trip planned from August 9th to the 16th, and I can't really cancel my tickets. But morally I can't go and spread the germs on an airplane if i do get it. Believe me I am disinfecting everything and washing hands over and over again, just trying to prevent the spread. Problem is she had this for 4 days before we took her to the doctor today, and I just thought it was another bug or nasty cold.

I have read that people who have MS or fibromyalgia are more susceptible to this flu, and that they have it worse than a healthy person. I have some major neurological issues, and doctors have questioned the MS thing but I've never been tested because I know it all comes from spine related nerve damage. Does this make me more susceptible to it?

I definitely will consult with the doctor more about this, but I wanted some feedback from any of you who may have had contact with a family member who was diagnosed with swine flu.

Do you think it is worse on us spineys if we were to contract it? I really really don't want to get 3,000 miles away from home and get sick. My oldest daughter and I are taking this trip, and we have so many fun things planned. I hate to disappoint her, as this is the only time she can go. And we lose our tickets if we don't go then.

Ergh, what do I do?
Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!


  • Cindy,
    Wow that is sure terrible news for Angie to get this. Do you have her on any quarantine in your house. There was a family here who the son contacted it and they quarantine the entire home. I realize she is your daughter, and it is hard to stay away from her. I would think as far as you getting it and how bad you would get it is anyones guess. I am very naive to the whole thing. But don't they begin treating the entire family with Tamiflu once one person gets it to stop it. I sure hope you can make that trip, I really think you need it. If for someone reason you can't go due to the virus call the airline and see about the tickets explaining your condition. Since you can provide medical proof of it, I doubt they would have a issue rescheduling. Although i understand it is the only time you two can get away together. Possible she has a fall break, if this time doesn't work out. I so hope you get to go though. Keep me posted. Saying a prayer for angie that she gets over this real quick without being to sick.
  • I agree with tamtam, call the airlines and explain the situation. You've got nothing to lose by doing so.

    As far as whether you are more susceptible, I doubt anyone could honestly tell you yay or nay. It sounds like you are doing all the right things. Of course the typical diet, rest, exercise (what you are capable of) and hygiene are pretty much your best defense. Make sure you eat well and do everything you can to give your body what it needs to fight off any infection/disease.

    I wish there was more help I could give you. Just know that your friends are here for you.

  • Cindy, so sorry to hear that Angie has contracted the swine flu, but its a good thing she got diagnosed and can be treated accordingly. As far as you and your trip goes you still have six days before you are scheduled to go and I would think this would be enough time to see if you come down with the virus or not. I would call or e-mail your doctor and asked about the home quarintine and also tell them about your travel plans and your concerns about it.

    At this point all you can do is worry about Angie and be as safe as you and your family can be with it. I really hope this all goes away for you and your family soon and that you get to enjoy this up comming trip. Take care and keep us informed..........and when you are back from your trip, we want to hear all the fun you had.

    Take care............Mitch
  • Tam, C, and Mitch, thank you so much for responding. I've had a couple of hours now since I posted this to do some research. If I don't have any symptoms by saturday, we should be okay to make the trip on sunday. However, if the symptoms begin, I will call the airlines and try to get it re-scheduled. I did purchase insurance with the tickets so I think the dates can be changed. Stephanie just really wants to go and I hate to let her down, as we've really never done anything like this together. For now I'll just take it one day at a time.

    In my research, I have found that it does often hit people with neurological problems or harder than others. But I'm stocking up on all sorts of vitamins and will make sure the family eats very well through this "quarantine" period.

    I was very surprised by the doctor. He said it really isn't as big of a deal as the media made it seem. Said to keep Angie home, but just to go about our normal lives. If anyone else comes down with symptoms, they will be treated with tamiflu at that time--they won't rx it unless you actually have the flu.

    Tamiflu itself is a 5 day course, one pill twice a day. So not too bad. I was under the impression that you had to take it for weeks, so I'm glad I'm once again misinformed.

    So for now, I will continue disinfecting everythign she comes in contact with. light switches, door knobs, chair backs, etc. My squirt bottle has been very busy this evening, and I think I have the rest of the kids on board to keep disinfecting things. None of us want to be as sick as my Angie is. She is very miserable. I'm hoping it doesn't turn to pneumonia...

    thanks for the support.

    Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!
  • Cindy, it's my understanding that swine flu in its present form is not that different than any normal flu. It is the fact that the flu usually is passed through migratory birds and now it can be passed from pigs to humans. Scientist are worried that if this virus were to mutate it could turn into a much more dangerous thing. Just the fact that not much is known about this strain vs. the run of the mill flu passed by birds is where the main concern lies.
  • Definitely a ton of media hype going on!

    I think what happens with a person who suffers from a neurological disorder, is that certain issues with the body become heightened. So your pain receptors go on overload and something that would cause a normal person to be uncomfortable and miserable, will feel incredibly worse to the chronic pain sufferer.

    Stay strong and this to shall pass. :-)

  • Problem is that medicine is trying to keep things in perspective and the media has to make a story. That doesn't mix too well for citizen's to get the truth (about a lot of things!).

    I'm on a planning team for the Pandemic Influenza here in my state. The flu in it's current stage can be fatal to some, but not so bad in others. A brother and sister just died from H1N1 in Indiana last week while others just feel like crap.

    The fear is that the virus is mutating. Couple that with immune suppressed humans this winter in North America and there could be a problem. The latest statistic we heard was that the guru's think that 40% of Americans will either get/or have had the H1N1 and there could be up to a 2 - 3% mortality rate with it.

    That being said, no one knows what's going to happen! But, I would check with your doctor before flying anywhere. One of the scenario's used in figuring out how the exposures occur is a sick human traveling on an airliner. They just keep circulating the same air while in flight.

    You and your family will most likely be fine and will have a great trip, but just keep doing what you are doing and watch for symptoms. Like everyone else said, I bet the airlines will work with you given the circumstances.

    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,863
    I believe in what Keith just posted. I know a few people who contacted swine flu in NYC. One was HIV Positive and it was tough, but she made it through.
    As far as this flu becoming a mutant, I think that is so true. From what folks at our hospital has been talking about this fall we should see a new and stronger twist on it.

    Cindy, I hope and pray that things work out for all of you. I know dealing with the airlines about canceling a flight is a bear. You would think they would have more compassion. I lost 3 tickets to Germany about 6 years ago because of one of my back problems. Since then, I take out the insurance each time.

    Lets hope for the best, you deserve it.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
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