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The swine flu freakout is reaching new heights, with Egypt slaughtering every pig in the nation, Joe Biden telling everybody not to ride the subway or fly on planes, and the World Health Organization calling a breakout "imminent." Oh, and a security aide to the Secretary of Energy and three members of his family probably have it.

At the same time, Mexico's top health official says that cases are leveling off. And the cases contracted outside of Mexico seem to be mild.

The medical director for the US National Foundation for Infectious Diseases says that "the severity doesn't seem to be much different than what it is in regular seasonal influenza." (According to the CDC, 36,000 people die and 200,000 are hospitalized in the US each year from typical seasonal flus. There have been just 91 cases of swine flu in the US.) Other experts point out that warm weather will soon very likely slow or halt the spread of the disease in the northern hemisphere.

So, which is it? Breakout or fizzle out?



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