Below is the H1N1 Handout that I am giving out to my patients.  I learned about more researched and treatment strategies at The American Herbalist Guild’s Primary Care Symposium and have included them in this handout. I promised to share some highlights about what I learned there and I thought most of you would appreciate this information. I hope it is helpful!  E-mail me if you want an easier to read copy of this handout.

The Naturopathic Perspective: 2009 H1N1 Influenza Prevention and Treatment

Symptoms and Spread: above 100°F, , body aches, diarrhea, , , , , . H1N1 is an influenza that spreads through the air from coughs and sneezes and can be picked up by touching something with the on it and then touching your mouth, nose or eyes.

Seek URGENT medical attention if you develop any of the following emergency warning signs:

  1. Difficulty breathing, fast breathing,
  2. Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  3. Sudden dizziness
  4. Bluish skin color or bluish discoloration in lips
  5. Confusion, or less responsive than normal
  6. Severe or persistent
  7. -like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough
  8. Signs of dehydration (dizziness, lack of urination, etc)
  9. Seizures (ex. uncontrolled convulsions)

PREVENTION

Source

Pro

Con

Vitamin D

http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/newsletter/h1n1-flu-and-vitamin-d.shtml

Easy, inexpensive, commonly deficient

Can overdose, need lab test for safe use

, healthy diet, stay home while ill

www.flu.gov

Easy, inexpensive,

Loss of income

Washing hands

www.flu.gov

Easy, inexpensive

Not always possible

American ginseng: Panax quinquefolium

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/

Many health benefits, safe

May be hard to find

Probiotics/ Colostrum

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/

Easy, Safe

expensive

www.flu.oregon.gov

Could prevent illness and spread, relatively inexpensive

Possibly ineffective or reactions, mercury in multi-dose vials, shortages.

Vitamins A,C, E

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/

Easy, safe. Cheap

Minerals and

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/

Easy, safe. Cheap

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/

Many health benefits

Not everyone likes the flavor

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/

Many health benefits

Strong odor

TREATMENT

Source

Pro

Con

Elderberry Sambucus nigra

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/150800161

Easy, good taste, other health benefits

Moderate cost.

Homeopathy

http://nationalcenterforhomeopathy.org/articles/castroflu_dec02.pdf

Easy, inexpensive, often very effective

Many remedies to choose from. The one chosen may or may not work.

Rest at home

www.flu.gov

Easy

Lost income.

Hydrotherapy

http://www.cfim.org/articles/hydrotherapy.html

Easy, inexpensive home treatment

Need someone to help set up.

Natural anti-virals

Osha, Lomatium, Elderberry, Monolaurin

Effective, safer and cheaper than prescription antivirals.

Can be expensive and taste bad.

RX Antivirals (Tamiflu)

www.flu.gov

Many studies show short term effectiveness

Viral resistance possible.

Groups at higher risk for flu complications: younger than 5 years of age, pregnant women, people of any age with chronic health conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, or heart disease) and people 65 years and older.

General concluding guidelines:

  • Talk with Dr. Margaret to determine if you are at higher risk and to figure out the best course of action for your individual situation.
  • Get enough sleep every night and avoid stress, including stressing out about getting the flu!
  • Plan ahead so your family is prepared in case you contract H1N1.
  • Talk to Dr. Margaret if you need more information to make a decision about whether or not to get vaccinated.
    • It is unwise and unnecessary to wait for hours in crowds to get vaccinated.
    • Let high risk folks have first access to limited supplies of vaccine if you are NOT in the high-risk group. Use the prevention suggestions in this handout in the meantime and call the office if you get flu symptoms.

Be well,

Margaret Philhower, ND

www.drmargaret.org