Flu cases starting to surge, with kids and teens especially vulnerable: doctors
09 January, 2019, 20:23
Through 2018, the CDC reported just 13 influenza-associated pediatric deaths-89.9% less than the average United States pediatric death total reported in the previous 3 seasons (116.6).
The virus has already claimed the lives of 13 children so far this flu season.
The child, who has not been identified for privacy reasons, lived in the "central region of the state" and died in late December, the New Jersey Department of Health said in a news release. Most of those cases (609) were influenza A, while 40 were influenza B and four were untyped.
Across the country, the flu is considered to be widespread in two dozen states, including North Carolina.
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Ottawa Public Health officials warn that flu has not yet peaked and the level of influenza being seen in other parts of Canada could be coming to Ottawa.
What strains are prevalent this year? .
"Stay home if at all possible, avoid close contact with other people, cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze, disinfect frequently touched surfaces and make sure to wash your hands frequently", continued Gildersleeve.
"Vaccination - although not ideal - still prevents many infections completely, and even if you get influenza having received the vaccine, your illness is much more likely to be milder, and you're less likely to get the complications of pneumonia and having to be hospitalized".
"As long as flu viruses are circulating, it is not too late to get vaccinated, even in January or later", the CDC says on its website. Most family physicians, pediatrician offices, primary care clinics and pharmacies offer the influenza vaccine. You can not get the flu from the flu shot, but immunity usually takes about two weeks to develop. "When you get vaccinated, you are not just protecting yourself, you are also protecting the people you love". And a million people were hospitalized.
What complications can accompany the flu? "Prescription flu medicine started early can shorten the duration of symptoms", Dr. Jeffrey Klausner, a professor of medicine in the division of infectious diseases at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), told Healthline. The flu itself can lead it respiratory failure and death.
When should you call your doctor? .
Symptoms of the flu include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches and fatigue.
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