The 1918 Influenza Pandemic Essay Research Paper

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The 1918 Influenza Pandemic Essay, Research Paper The 1918 Influenza Pandemic: The Hidden Secrets of a Mass Murderer Once again the forgotten truth of the Influenza Pandemic of 1918 is revealed. Lost in the woodwork are many events, although in this case, it was just too devastating for people to not be aware of its existence. Around this very world people died by the townful, not by the hands of a person but by the hands of a deadly flu. This is a detective story. Here was a mass murderer that was around 80 years ago and who s never been brought to justice. And what we re trying to do is find the murderer. [Taubenberger pg. 289] 1918 was a very difficult time for our nations. Many countries were strongly involved in the Great WWI, almost to the point where all countries time

and thought was driven away from the mass deaths due to the influenza. More people died from this than the war so, that it was practically swept under the table. The influenza actually tended to originate and sweep through the camps of many soldiers, killing them mysteriously one by one. Even more closely related to the flu as reported in The New York Times, was the fact that many areas were short on nurses, and even shorter on money to hire more medical staff [New York Times, Sat 28, 1918]. And day by day more and more people began to become ill. Learning more about The Pandemic of 1918 may help control or even prevent an identical flu strain that can killed so many. More important to the restraint of this flu is the medical research done to prevent it from reappearing with as

much magnitude as before. Until 1918, scientists believed these deadly flu s to be a bacteria, but later proved inaccurate by autopsies. From much research and development they have come to the conclusion that Influenza has three types, or strains, easily labeled as A, B, and C. The most severe form, A type, is the form which causes Pandemics. The flu is dangerous to a human due to the fact that the Hemagglutinin (H-spike), combines with the red blood cells, to make them clump together. After this occurs they match up with a protein on the respiratory cell, and this allows the virus to pick a good host cell. The only thing that can divert the H-spike from working correctly is the Neuraminidase (N-spike), the job of this spike is an enzyme or chemical activator. It separates the

red blood cells from the H-spike; in other words, makes the virus to large too fit in the cell. The only thing from preventing the N-spike from working all the time, and every time is that once a person contracts the virus they do not have enough N-spikes to fight off the H-spikes from doing their jobs. Due to this sequence, the A-type virus is a common cause of Pandemics and Epidemics. A common misconception is the origination of the Flu epidemic. Much to Spain s dismay, many people believe the virus began there, calling it the Spanish Flu. Although proven by many scientists untrue, the label on Spain still remains. The most believable explanation for this is that due to the fact Spain did not censor their news reports. It seemed to be that many cases were popping up in Spain

before anywhere else. The Spanish military leaders believe that the Flu actually began in Europe, or more precisely German military camps, due to the uncleanness in the camps. Their theories are that the virus was brought to battle on Flanders, blown across the Spanish coast and into Spain where the Flu was then contracted by many helpless citizens. Although their theories can easily be proved wrong because Madrid (mid-Spain) had many cases of the virus before any were identified on or near the coasts. More accurately reviewed by scientist, John Oxford, that the influenza of 1918 may as well have been called the flu of 1917 or even 1916. I am not even talking about the Spanish Lady of 1918, Oxford said. I am talking about a Spanish Lady from 1916 or 1917. From digging up old