The H1N1 virus is killing people who are obese or morbidly obese more frequently than in the past and the doctors seem mystified. Did they pay attention in medical school? Earlier in the article it's stated that for the people at risk the H1N1 virus affects the lower lungs as opposed to the usual invasion of the upper respiratory tract. As an asthma patient I can tell you that my lung function tests reflected an almost twenty percent increase when I lost fifty pounds. With less fat in the way, my lungs had more room to expand and at the same time more carbon dioxide was expelled, which increased the amount of oxygen my lungs were able to take in. One of the things I noticed during an asthma attack is that I tend to try and suck more air in without trying to exhale which means that the only the upper lungs are working. The lower lungs are congested and when I focus on exhaling forcefully, I tend to get a deeper, more satisfying breath. Being fat makes this more difficult. Duh.
I'm confused. Does the NY Times have a time machine? Today is October 17, 2009 and at the moment it is 11:44 am. How do they know for sure that the article on the overreaction to the H1N1 virus is going to appear tomorrow?
A version of this article appeared in print on October 18, 2009, on page A1 of the New York editionIt's written in the past tense. Writing it today is one thing but a lot can happen in the next twelve hours as I'm sure Thomas Dewey would have explained to them. Or if this asteroid had come a little closer.
It's not that I think the H1N1 virus isn't a problem that might become worse, at least some lessons were learned from SARS, but a better focus might be how the many people who don't have health insurance are going to receive adequate treatment and if hospitals are strained already why isn't something being done to change that? Eight months into the pandemic and still not enough ventilators. That's like eight years into the Afghanistan debacle and the troops still don't have dependable weapons. Too bad we don't manufacture things in this country anymore, these problems would have been nipped in the bud thirty years ago. Viva la corporations! There bottom line is everything and now Americans are at the bottom of the line.