Thursday, January 8, 2015

Local Docs Warn About Pop-Up Flu Strain

The new year brings a new warning about a flu strain that could pop up during the two most active months of the flu season - January and February. Physicians at AFC/Doctors Express are warning patients that it's not too late to get the flu shot to help build immunity from the B strain which tends to appear in January and February during each flu season.  

While medical experts say the H3N2 strain is mainly to blame for the current flu epidemic, AFC/Doctors Express physicians say that is not the only strain people should worry about. AFC/Doctors Express centers have been packed with patients since the new year and want people to know the difference between the flu and a "stomach bug" so they can determine when it's time to see the doctor and when they can take care of their sympoms at home.
One of the biggest myths about the flu is that is causes vomitting. But the flu is actually a highly contagious respiratory disease and vomiting is NOT on the list of flu symptoms. Our doctors have been seeing several different stomach bugs (gastroenteritis) go around which are contagious infections of the stomach and intestines. 

Symptoms of the flu:
  • fever
  • headache
  • muscle aches
  • sore throat
  • cough
  • chills
  • runny nose
  • fatigue
*The biggest danger of the flu is that it wears your body's ability to fight OTHER infections that you may get while you have the flu, such as pneumonia. Sometimes these infections can cause death.

Symptoms of the "stomach bug:" (gastroenteritis)
  • nausea
  • vomiting and/or diarrhea
  • possible fever
*Most people recover completely. Stomach bugs can be serious for infants and the elderly who are unable to drink enough fluids to replace what they lose through vomiting and/or diarrhea.

According to new numbers from the CDC, flu activity is "high" or "widespread" in 43 states. And, the past 32 flu seasons have shown that February is the most active month for the flu, followed by December and then January.

1 comment:

Nicole said...

Thank you so much for posting about this and recommending a flu shot. I see so many blogs talking about how they don't get it and recommending other non-proven remedies for the flu. So again, thank you!