Flu bug bites hard in Louisiana, WWL, February 2, 2011:
The flu has hit Louisiana especially hard this year, and continues to be a major problem. Health experts say the situation is unusual.
"The flu problem has been extraordinary this year. We've had a fairly early season," says Dr. Frank Welch, Medical Director for Louisiana's Immunization Program. ...
"And we have been at the maximum level, which is called 'widespread', for about three to four weeks now," says Welch. ...
"Because we are seeing so many different types of flu, it wouldn't be surprising to me if there was a new type that started coming in and we see another peak coming up in the next couple weeks," Welch says.
Even some of those who've been immunized against the flu have developed a mild form of the flu.
Is the BP Gulf Oil Disaster impacting people's immune systems? See:
- Benzene: Prolonged exposure to elevated levels of benzene may also weaken the immune system thus decreasing the body’s ability to fight infection and perhaps ward off cancer.
- Doctor: "[W]hen you get a huge load of toxins and chemicals, then the system gets overhwelmed and can’t take care of it. It stays in the tissues effecting their functions; Brain functions, immune system, hormonal function etc."
- Doctor: “What I am concerned most about is a long-term effect, that won’t even show up for years, but are going to have tremendous implications in human immune system and hormonal function and brain function.”
- Evidence of genotoxicity and chromosomal damage from the Prestige [oil] spill demonstrates the importance of examining biomarkers, such as genetic, epigenetic, immune, and inflammatory alterations because some diseases, including cancer, have a long latency.
- CDC: "Excessive exposure to benzene can be harmful to the immune system, increasing the chance for infection."