Breaking News
February 19, 2019 - Scientists untangle how microbes manufacture key antibiotic compound
February 19, 2019 - Greater primary care physician supply associated with longer life spans
February 19, 2019 - HIV-1 protein suppresses immune response more broadly than thought
February 19, 2019 - For 2020 Dem Hopefuls, ‘Medicare-For-All’ Is A Defining Issue, However They Define It
February 19, 2019 - KU professor discusses promise of brain-computer interface to aid, restore communication
February 19, 2019 - Early marker of cardiac damage triggered by cancer treatment identified
February 19, 2019 - Antidepressant drug could save people from deadly sepsis, research suggests
February 19, 2019 - CRISPR technology creates pluripotent stem cells that are ‘invisible’ to the immune system
February 19, 2019 - Midlife Systemic Inflammation Linked to Later Cognitive Decline
February 19, 2019 - Therapy derived from parasitic worms downregulates proinflammatory pathways
February 19, 2019 - Antimicrobial reusable coffee cups are less likely to become contaminated with bacteria, study shows
February 19, 2019 - Harnessing the evolutionary games played by cancer cells to advance therapies
February 19, 2019 - AHA News: Heart Transplant Survivor Gets Wedding Proposal at Finish Line
February 19, 2019 - HIV hidden in patients’ cells can now be accurately measured
February 19, 2019 - Research finds reasons for sudden cardiac death in patients with stable ischemic disease
February 19, 2019 - New protocol could help physicians to rule out bacterial infections in infants
February 19, 2019 - Women experiencing miscarriage should be offered treatment choices
February 19, 2019 - New protocol can help identify febrile infants at low risk for serious bacterial infections
February 19, 2019 - Innovative way to block HIV runs into a roadblock
February 19, 2019 - Springer Nature with BCRF conduct pilot project to make their research datasets more accessible
February 19, 2019 - Study finds neuromelanin-sensitive MRI as potential biomarker for psychosis
February 19, 2019 - Improvements in cardiovascular care for elderly save billions in health care costs
February 19, 2019 - Chilean food regulations are changing food perceptions and purchasing habits, study suggests
February 19, 2019 - Index endoscopy results are crucial for assessment of Barrett’s patients
February 18, 2019 - Breast cancer screening age should be lowered to 35
February 18, 2019 - Brain synchronization depends on the language of communication
February 18, 2019 - Drug Company Payments Over Time May Influence Rx Practices
February 18, 2019 - Despite socioeconomic gains, black-white ‘health gap’ remains
February 18, 2019 - Researchers report progress in the treatment of aggressive brain tumors
February 18, 2019 - Scientists discover trigger that turns strep infections into devastating disease
February 18, 2019 - Scanning children’s teeth may predict future mental health issues
February 18, 2019 - Health Highlights: Feb. 14, 2019
February 18, 2019 - New knowledge could help predict and prevent depression
February 18, 2019 - More primary care physicians leads to longer life spans | News Center
February 18, 2019 - Study examines link between supply of primary care physicians and life expectancy
February 18, 2019 - New study assesses screen time in young children
February 18, 2019 - Patented IU discovery to treat ARDS has been optioned to Theratome Bio
February 18, 2019 - Software found to be four times better at monitoring ovarian cancer
February 18, 2019 - Male Y chromosomes not ‘genetic wastelands’
February 18, 2019 - Hormone therapy during gender transition may increase risk for cardiovascular events
February 18, 2019 - NICE renews accreditation for Advanced
February 18, 2019 - FDA Grants Orphan Drug Designation to Amplyx Pharmaceuticals for APX001 for Treatment of Cryptococcosis
February 18, 2019 - Molecule effective in killing tuberculosis bacteria
February 18, 2019 - Columbia researchers unravel why some glioblastomas respond to immunotherapy
February 18, 2019 - Men who are able to do ten push-ups are less likely to have a stroke
February 18, 2019 - Blood-brain barrier disruption could lead to age-related cognitive decline
February 18, 2019 - Combination of PARP inhibitor and immunotherapy results in tumor regression in SCLC mouse models
February 18, 2019 - Heavy smoking could lead to vision loss, study finds
February 18, 2019 - New diagnostic test for malaria uses spit, not blood
February 18, 2019 - New therapeutic molecules show promise in reversing memory loss related to depression, aging
February 18, 2019 - Darla Shine joins anti-vaccination campaigners
February 18, 2019 - New study outlines sex-specific issues in ischemic heart disease
February 18, 2019 - Drug combinations could become first-line treatment for metastatic kidney cancer
February 18, 2019 - Lifetime adversity, increased neural processing during trauma combine to intensify core PTSD symptoms
February 18, 2019 - HRQoL Scores Decrease With Treatment Line in Multiple Myeloma
February 18, 2019 - Convincing evidence that type 2 diabetes is a cause of erectile dysfunction
February 18, 2019 - Study offers implications of advanced age in evaluation, management of ischemic heart disease
February 18, 2019 - Children from homes with flame-retardant sofa have high SVOC concentration in their blood
February 18, 2019 - Art Institute of Chicago announces results of research on five terracotta sculptures
February 18, 2019 - New PET/CT tracer shows high detection rate for diagnosis of acute venous thromboembolism
February 18, 2019 - Smoking may blight immune response against melanoma and reduce survival
February 18, 2019 - How Inactivity and Junk Food Can Harm Your Brain
February 18, 2019 - Diabetes tops common conditions for frequent geriatric emergency patients
February 18, 2019 - Longer-lived sperm produces offspring with healthier lifespans
February 18, 2019 - New dental adhesive prevents tooth decay around orthodontic brackets
February 18, 2019 - New eHealth tool shows potential to improve quality of asthma care
February 18, 2019 - New Australian initiative helps emergency clinicians to improve patient care
February 17, 2019 - Apellis Pharmaceuticals’ APL-2 Receives Fast Track Designation from the FDA for the Treatment of Patients with Paroxysmal Nocturnal Hemoglobinuria
February 17, 2019 - Researchers identify faulty ‘brake’ that interferes with heart muscle’s ability to contract and relax
February 17, 2019 - Support from trusted adults can reduce risk of dying in suicidal teens, finds study
February 17, 2019 - Heart attack awareness improved since 2008
February 17, 2019 - Exercise gives a better brain boost to older men than women
February 17, 2019 - New research disproves previous assumptions of how looks influence personality
February 17, 2019 - Cannabis use as a teenager linked to depression later in life
February 17, 2019 - Sinks by Toilets in ICU Patient Rooms Harbor Harmful Bacteria
February 17, 2019 - Cancer cells’ plasticity makes them harder to stop
February 17, 2019 - Young cannabis users have increased risk of depression and suicidal behavior
February 17, 2019 - Tasmanian Devils Likely to Survive Cancer Scourge
February 17, 2019 - Neoadjuvant PD-1 blockade seems effective in glioblastoma
February 17, 2019 - Personal, social factors play role in enabling sustainable return to work after ill health
October 1918 marks the centenary of Spanish Flu that claimed more lives than World War I

October 1918 marks the centenary of Spanish Flu that claimed more lives than World War I

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

October 1918 marks the centenary of the pandemic that claimed more lives than World War One

JUST as the cataclysmic conflict of the Great War was in its death throes, a new killer emerged that would, on a global scale, be even more lethal – the Spanish Flu pandemic, which was at its most virulent in October and November 1918.

It claimed the lives of up to 50 million worldwide and was responsible for an estimated 150,000 deaths in Britain. The country had one of the world’s most highly developed healthcare systems, but central government and local authorities failed to take meaningful action to halt the spread of the disease.

“The Government didn’t want people to panic, so they tried to keep it quiet,” said Barry Doyle, who is Professor of Health History at the University of Huddersfield. He has been researching the pandemic and Britain’s response, with some of his findings relayed in a blog for the Wellcome Library.

It is titled Snuffing potash to ward off flu, a reference to one of the more eccentric responses to the flu outbreak.

“The only thing the authorities could do was publish advice and it varied from quite useful to completely odd,” said Professor Doyle. “For example, there was a suggestion that permanganate of potash, salt and water could either be gargled or snuffed up the nostrils two or three times a day!

“Most of the advice was don’t go to crowded places, wrap up warmly, stay indoors, go to bed and wait till the flu passes. But the problem was that adults had work to go to, plus commitments to children and at the beginning of the pandemic there was still a war on, so there was a lot of pressure on people to get to work, especially in industrial areas. Sheffield had one of the highest mortality rates because it was a munitions town,” said Professor Doyle.

One upshot of this was that the mortality rate among healthy adults was disproportionately high and older people were less affected.

“The elderly did what they were supposed to do and stayed in bed, whereas younger people got up and went to work or tried to shake it off and then very quickly got septic pneumonia and died within three or four days.”

Spanish Flu death toll

Infectious disease wards in hospitals could not admit patients because so many nurses were down with flu -and there was a shortage of nursing and medical staff anyway, because of the war, said Professor Doyle, who added that in some households there might have been three or four deaths, but bodies had to remain there because there were no fit gravediggers and coffin makers.

Although Britain had one of the best healthcare systems in 1918, it was controlled by local authorities and voluntary organizations, meaning that there was little that central government could do – apart from issuing an order that cinemas should be evacuated and ventilated every three hours – but the response was no better in any other country, said Professor Doyle.

The pandemic was one of the deadliest outbreaks in all history and it spread throughout the world, whether or not countries had been embroiled in the Great War.

There has been extensive research and debate over how and where the pandemic originated, although the first recorded cases seem to have been in a remote part of Kansas, in the USA, during the early part of 1918. The global outbreak was eventually dubbed “Spanish” flu because Spain was a non-combatant in the Great War.

“This meant that the Spanish were talking about this epidemic, whereas the British, French and American Press were trying to keep it quiet,” said Professor Doyle.

Source:

https://www.hud.ac.uk/news/2018/september/spanish-flu-centenary/

Tagged with:

About author

Related Articles