Swine flu has taken the lives of 76 children in the United States including 19 in the past week, health officials said Friday, suggesting that the H1N1 virus could be unusually harmful for its youngest victims.
The regular flu kills between 46 and 88 children a year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. H1N1 deaths could dramatically outpace that number, experts said, if swine flu continues to spread at the rate it has so far.
Children are especially susceptible to catching the virus and suffering its consequences more severely, according to the CDC. Kids with asthma or heart conditions are also at high risk.
More than 600 have died from swine flu and upwards of 9,000 have been hospitalized due to the viruts, health officials said.
Get more: MSNBC