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15 November 2009

H1N1 Stories? Have any of you, or anyone you know, had H1N1? [More:]

I ask because it may be in my house right now. My wife works with someone who came down with it last week; they sat next to each other at a training class Monday and the other woman was already running a fever but didn't stay home. :\

Fastforward to this weekend: Mrs. Doohickie woke up Saturday with no voice. She went to the urgent care clinic, where tests were run for strep throat and H1N1, both of which came back negative. They diagnosed a sinus infection and prescribed an antibiotic.

This evening she's very achy and running a fever a little over 101. Called the doc who prescribed Tamiflu. Hopefully if it's H1N1, we've nipped it in the bud. She will probably get in to see the doctor tomorrow (I think as a teacher she's required to get tested to see what strain she has).

She has a weak immune system, fybromyalgia and asthma, so we are a little more concerned about her than, say, me. I'll post an update tomorrow if there is any word on whether she has H1N1.
My cousins had H1N1- all four of 'em, Dad, Mom, daughter, son. It was a rough week from the sounds of it, but they all survived. None have any chronic illnesses.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 15 November | 22:13
I had the flu about a month ago. I don't have any complicating health factors and didn't go into the doctor (I just moved here and haven't a proper doctor and changed my insurance). I was like flus I've had in the past -- started out with a scratchy throat, then a fever and feeling like weak and like crap, some really unpleasant diarrhea for 48 hours. I pretty much stayed in bed, took OTC flu medicine, slept, drank fluids and stayed away from people. I woke up on the fourth day feeling a lot better but there was a cough. The next day I felt fine but the cough made me sound terrible... but it was only an annoyance.

About five days later I got an ear infection and went to the doctor for antibiotics. He gave me codeine based cough syrup for that hacking cough while I was there. He said it sounded like I probably had h1n1 since pretty much everyone in San Diego County with the flu had h1n1. My ear infection eventually went away and now I'm back at 100%.

I hope your wife recovers quickly, Doohickie.
posted by birdherder 15 November | 22:40
Some people I work with have had it. They say there are about three days of sheer misery, but it's really not much different than a bad case of a normal flu.

One thing I have noticed is that two of the people who've had it now have a lingering, hacking cough that won't go away. I've heard that one of them ended up with walking pneumonia (this was several weeks after the flu went away). So do be on the lookout for that, and get the cough treated sooner than later.

Best of wishes, Doohickie.
posted by treepour 15 November | 23:11
My niece's 4 year old son had it, and another niece (in her 20s) had it. He ended up in the hospital, she weathered it at home while pregnant.
posted by iconomy 15 November | 23:19
A couple of my friends (healthy, female, 20s) had it and all of them said it was pretty sucky but just like a normal flu, except for the increased paranoia of spreading it.
They said it lasted for about 3 days, which is what everyone else in this thread is saying too.

I wouldn't worry too much, from my understanding the reason this flu is different (someone correct me if I am way off base here) is that it over-stimulates the immune response so it actually harms normally healthy people more than those with weak immune systems like the elderly or the sick.
posted by rmless2 15 November | 23:21
My wife work for a hospital group so I hear about it everyday. We just had two men in their early 50's die. Both had pre existing conditions. One had cause of death set as heart attack brought on by H1N1 stress.
posted by arse_hat 15 November | 23:45
I actually heard it doesn't strike elderly as much because a similar flu circulated in the 50s and their exposure gives them some level of immunity.
posted by Doohickie 15 November | 23:45
And I hope is just something else minor.
posted by arse_hat 15 November | 23:47
I'm fairly sure this is what I had last summer...and it hit me hard. I didn't have a voice for six weeks and was coughing up green for nearly that long. Sometimes I was hearing crackly noises when I breathed. When I got a chest x-ray, I was told my lungs were clear. Didn't feel like it.
posted by brujita 16 November | 00:02
Aww, I'm sorry she's sick. If it's H1N1, she's likely to be as miserable as with seasonal flu. She's got you taking care of her, so she'll obviously be fine. Feed her lots of chicken soup, ginger ale, hot tea and tamiflu.
posted by theora55 16 November | 00:04
I'm about 95% sure I had it in April. I didn't feel at all sick when I was lying down, but the minute I got up, I felt dizzy enough that I'd have to sit down immediately. And I had some gastrointestinal issues, but they weren't major; a lot of sneezing and hacking, though. The icky symptoms lasted about three days, the dizziness lasted about five days; I tried to go into work earlier, and ended up having to go home because I couldn't even sit up.
posted by occhiblu 16 November | 00:06
A friend had it. Ended up in the ICU for a week. (Turned into pneumonia.)

I'm afraid that one of my parents will get it and be completely fucked. They both have lung issues as it is. My mom also is also immunocomprimised. She's supposed to be getting the h1n1 shot this week (she's already had her normal flu and pneumonia shots.)
posted by fluffy battle kitten 16 November | 00:08
(also. also. also. I should proofread this shit.)
posted by fluffy battle kitten 16 November | 00:09
I strongly suspect I had H1N1 in April; I just found out from someone in HR the other day that there was at least one confirmed case in their own office around the time I thought I had it, and there were probably others at my workplace.

I was full-on "oh god kill me now" miserable for about two weeks solid, with one of the worst coughs I've had in nearly a decade. After my other symptoms cleared, the cough lasted another six weeks. I also had several days of vomiting. My health -- which is a delicate ecosystem of chronic conditions to begin with, but which had been generally very good for the past 4 or 5 years -- has been haywire ever since; I suspect that it triggered a general autoimmune flare for me. I was briefly in the hospital for a couple of days in late May, almost had to go back to the hospital in August, and have been having a battery of tests since the summer to A) nail down why my platelet issues have started acting so inexplicably, so that B) they can decide if it's safe enough for me to have an endoscopy and some other tests.

posted by scody 16 November | 00:57
(So yeah, please everyone: get vaccinated if you have access to it. If for no other reason than to avoid screwing over people like me who have chronic immunity issues. As James Dean famously said: "the life you save may be... mine.")
posted by scody 16 November | 01:01
The possibility that.H1N1 will dissipate before enough vaccine is commonly available grows greater with passing day.
posted by Ardiril 16 November | 01:48
Okay, cool! Then the millions of us with immune system issues have nothing to worry about! Awesome!
posted by scody 16 November | 02:28
(And if I sound sarcastic, well, blame it on the fact that I had a cousin with immunity issues who was killed by measles back in the '90s, contracted from someone who hadn't been vaccinated.)
posted by scody 16 November | 02:31
Fresno has one last H1N1 clinic scheduled that will exhaust this county's vaccine. The wait time during the last clinics was four hours and up, and they turned many people away at the end of the day. I have no idea if this county is adhering to the CDC priority list (that basically excludes healthy individuals aged 25 and up), but I have read a fair number of local news stories around the US that claim their clinics are ignoring priorities. Either way, right now a lot of people are not getting vaccinations.
posted by Ardiril 16 November | 02:48
I blame Obama. It's his watch now. heheh
posted by Ardiril 16 November | 02:49
I'm pretty sure I had H1N1 about a month and a half ago. I was on my back for most of a week and didn't feel like human being until about a week ago.

My doctor didn't want anyone to come in unless there were definite or life-threatening symptoms, though, so I can't say for sure.

H1N1 is supposedly rampant in my area, so that's why I'm guessing that's what it was.

Fluids, rest, more rest, and more fluids.
Also, if you think there's a secondary infection (and aren't sensitive to most antibiotics, like I tend to be), get to the doc.

The worst case scenario I hear about is pneumonia, which is awful and I wouldn't wish it on anyone.

Best wishes to you and yours.
posted by lilywing13 16 November | 04:50
I am ready for my H1N1 shot, yes siree! Just waiting for work (I work at a medical center) to start handing them out to low-priority folks like me. I sense I may be waiting awhile. The clinics for higher-priority people (pregnant ladies, 25 to 64 with chronic illnesses) around NYC this weekend were pretty well attended from what I hear (though the whole reason they could have those in the first place was that people are not letting schools vaccinate their school-age children).
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 16 November | 07:28
Actually, looks like I was wrong. A blurb from this morning's paper:

The city's five rotating clinics gave 7, 784 people free swine flu vaccinations over the weekend. Even though the vaccines were free, the city continued to report low turnout: Each clinic can accomodate up to 4,500 people per day.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 16 November | 09:11
I suspect I had it about a month ago. It started out like a regular cold - tired, sore throat, congestion. But overnight I started getting severe chills and a moderate fever. I never get fevers (heck, my regular temp is like 97.8) so that was very rare for me. The fever was easily kept in check with OTC flu meds, though. I also had GI issues, but I was on antibiotics at the time for a dental issue and at first attributed the upset tummy to that. Still not sure if the diarrhea was a flu symptom or not. Anyway, I felt like crap for about 4 days total - ruined my weekend and a planned bike ride to Milwaukee, dammit - and then felt better with just a lingering cough. I have no immune or other health issues.

I did not go to a doc so I don't know if it was H1N1, but it sure seemed like the flu and I had already gotten the seasonal flu shot. I will still get the H1N1 shot if it ever becomes available to not-priority populations.
posted by misskaz 16 November | 09:55
The mister and I had it in early October. It wasn't officially confirmed but our doc later said that if we had the flu, and we really did, it was H1N1 because that was the only flu in the area at that time.

I started feeling kind of iffy late one afternoon. Not a half hour later I had my head in the toilet. The other regular flu symptoms showed up shortly thereafter. The mister's bout started a couple days after mine did and he never vomited. The worst parts lasted about a week or so, but we both had lingering sinus problems. The mister ended up with a sinus infection.

For what it's worth we're both considered immunocompromised.

Hope she gets well soon!
posted by deborah 16 November | 10:47
The only sightings of H1N1 around here are spotted on the panicky tabloid headlines and 50% of people I know/meet have gotten the vaccine. 50% are against getting the (free and there's enough for every person in Sweden) vaccine. No signs of even a cold at this house yet *knock-on-wood* but some kids at preschool have had the sniffles.
posted by dabitch 16 November | 11:33
H1N1 is definitely around town. Like I said, Mrs. Doohickie was directly exposed to a coworker who had it, while the coworker had a fever. So she's pretty concerned. On the other hand, her worst day so far was yesterday. She's still a little feverish today, but nothing Tylenol can't handle. She also has a dry cough (which worries me a bit).

The doctor told her that since she's on Tamiflu she won't test positive for H1N1 now, but she is out of work until at least Thursday; her school district wants all teachers with the flu to be cleared by a doctor before returning to work (and her appointment to see the doc is on Thursday). So her case is one of "unconfirmed" H1N1.
posted by Doohickie 16 November | 21:23
I got the vaccine today! Hurrah!

(It was surprisingly quick, given all the shortage/waiting horror stories I've been hearing. 5 mins, in and out.)
posted by unsurprising 16 November | 21:36
My cousin's 7 year old daughter in Florida had it about two months ago. She was fully recovered in a week.

But a boy from my town had it this past June, and died from it at age 6. They said he also had "underlying health conditions", but it's a damned shame for his family in any case.
posted by redvixen 16 November | 22:00
My ex-boyfriend in New Zealand died from it a few months ago.
posted by gaspode 16 November | 22:30
H1n1 vaccine is in short supply around here, so I didn't get it. In fact, haven't even gotten seasonal flu shot yet. And now I have the flu, so I am blaming you, doohickie. Fever, achy, achy, weak, sore throat.sneezy I rarely have a fever, so 101+ means it's flu, which means it's h1n1. Oh, and I'm as whiny as I can be with a sore throat. or swine-y, heh.

How's your wife doing?
posted by theora55 16 November | 22:49
I Bet You Did Something Awesome Recently: || This just charmed me.