H3N2 is a subtype of the influenza A virus that can cause respiratory illness in humans. It is also known as the “Hong Kong flu,” as it was first identified in Hong Kong in 1968.
The symptoms of H3N2 virus infection are similar to those of other strains of influenza and can include:
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Body aches
In some cases, people may also experience nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Although these symptoms are more common in children than in adults. The severity of H3N2 virus symptoms can vary from mild to severe. And it can lead to complications such as pneumonia, bronchitis, and sinus infections.
If you are experiencing symptoms of H3N2 virus or any other type of influenza, it is important to seek medical attention promptly. Particularly if you are at a higher risk of complications, such as young children, elderly individuals, or people with weakened immune systems.
From where H3N2 virus come?
H3N2 is a subtype of the influenza A virus, which is known to mutate frequently. The origin of the H3N2 virus is believed to be a reassortment (genetic mixing) of the H2N2 virus. And a strain of avian influenza virus. This reassortment likely occurred in pig. Which are known to be able to host both human and avian influenza viruses, and the resulting virus then spread to humans.
The H3N2 virus first emerged in Hong Kong in 1968. And it has since spread globally, becoming a common cause of seasonal flu outbreaks each year. The virus continues to evolve and mutate. Which is why flu vaccines need to be updated every year to provide protection against the latest strains.
What are the similar virus of H3N2 virus?’
H3N2 is a subtype of the influenza A virus and is closely related to other influenza A viruses. Influenza viruses are classified into subtypes based on the combinations of two surface proteins, hemagglutinin (H) and neuraminidase (N), that they carry.
Other subtypes of influenza A viruses that can cause illness in humans include:
- H1N1: This subtype was responsible for the 1918 influenza pandemic. As well as the 2009 swine flu pandemic.
- H2N2: This subtype caused the 1957 Asian flu pandemic.
- H5N1: This subtype is an avian influenza virus that has caused sporadic cases of severe illness in humans, with a high mortality rate.
- H7N9: This subtype is another avian influenza virus that emerged in China in 2013. And has caused serious respiratory illness in humans.
While these viruses are all different subtypes. They are all influenza A viruses and share some similarities in terms of symptoms and transmission. However, they can also differ in terms of their severity, transmission patterns. And the populations that they tend to affect.
Health Exerts advise on H3N2 virus?
Health experts recommend taking steps to prevent the spread of the H3N2 virus and other influenza viruses, including:
- Getting vaccinated: The annual flu vaccine is the best way to protect yourself against the H3N2 virus and other influenza strains.
- Practicing good hand hygiene: Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Covering your mouth and nose: Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your elbow when you cough or sneeze, and dispose of tissues immediately.
- Avoiding close contact with sick individuals: If someone around you is sick, try to avoid close contact with them, and if you are sick, stay home to avoid spreading the virus.
- Keeping your environment clean: Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces such as doorknobs, countertops, and light switches.
If you experience symptoms of the H3N2 virus or any other type of influenza, seek medical attention promptly, particularly if you are at a higher risk of complications. Treatment may include antiviral medications that can reduce the severity and duration of symptoms, but they are most effective when started early in the illness.
Home remedy for H3N2 virus?
While there is no cure for the H3N2 virus or any other influenza virus, there are some home remedies that may help alleviate symptoms and support the body’s immune system:
- Rest: Getting plenty of rest can help the body fight off the virus and speed up recovery.
- Stay hydrated: Drinking plenty of fluids such as water, herbal tea, or clear broths can help prevent dehydration and loosen mucus.
- Gargling with saltwater: Gargling with warm saltwater can help relieve a sore throat and reduce inflammation.
- Use a humidifier: Adding moisture to the air with a humidifier or steamy shower can help relieve congestion and coughing.
- Drink warm liquids: Drinking warm liquids like tea, chicken soup, or hot water with honey and lemon can help soothe a sore throat and ease congestion.
- Use over-the-counter medications: Over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen can help reduce fever, aches, and pains. Nasal saline sprays or decongestants can help relieve congestion.
It’s important to note that home remedies are not a substitute for medical treatment. And if symptoms are severe or persistent, you should seek medical attention from a healthcare provider. Additionally, if you have a high risk of complications or a weakened immune system, you should consult with your healthcare provider before trying any home remedies.
List of countries affected most with H3N2 virus?
Influenza viruses, including H3N2, are global health concerns that can affect people in any country. Seasonal flu outbreaks occur every year. And can affect different regions at different times, making it difficult to pinpoint specific countries that are most affected by the H3N2 virus.
However, some countries may experience more severe outbreaks than others due to various factors such as climate, population density, vaccination rates, and public health resources. In general, countries in the temperate regions of the world, including North America, Europe, and parts of Asia, tend to experience the most severe flu seasons.
During the 2017-2018 flu season, the H3N2 virus was particularly severe. And the United States was one of the countries most affected by the virus. Other countries, including:
- Australia, and
- The United Kingdom
also experienced higher-than-average rates of flu-related illness and hospitalizations during that season.
It’s worth noting that flu activity can vary from season to season and from country to country. And the best way to get up-to-date information on flu activity in your region is to consult your local public health authority or healthcare provider.
Effects of H3N2 virus in India?
Like other countries, India experiences seasonal flu outbreaks every year. Which can include various strains of the influenza virus, including H3N2. However, it can be challenging to determine the specific impact of the H3N2 virus in India due to limited surveillance and reporting systems for influenza.
During the 2017-2018 flu season, the H3N2 virus caused a severe flu outbreak in many parts of the world, including the United States, Canada, and Australia. While there were reports of increased influenza activity in India during that season, it is unclear how much of this activity was due to the H3N2 virus specifically.
In general, the impact of seasonal flu in India varies from year to year and can depend on factors such as climate, population density, and public health resources. The Indian government has implemented various measures to prevent and control the spread of influenza, including vaccination campaigns, public awareness campaigns, and surveillance systems to monitor flu activity.
If you are in India and experiencing flu-like symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention from a healthcare provider. They can provide a diagnosis and treatment options, which may include antiviral medications to help reduce the severity and duration of symptoms.
78-year-old man from Hassan becomes first victim of H3N2 in Karnataka
Hiregowda, age 78, of Alur taluk, Hassan district, was the first person to contract the H3N2 virus in Karnataka. According to District Health Officer Dr. Shivaswamy,
During a few days in February, Hiregowda had a fever, throat soreness, cough, and other symptoms. Samples and a throat swab from him were sent to the lab for analysis. But on March 1, he passed away.
There are health checks happening in and around the settlements. Those who exhibit any signs of viral fever or illness have undergone further testing. According to Shivaswamy, the throat swabs have been sent for testing.
The virus has so far been found in six people in Hassan district. The virus typically affects elderly people and youngsters under the age of 15. According to the DHO, they have been urged to exercise caution and get checked out by a doctor if they have any symptoms.