It's getting to be that time of year when mothers say "Put your coat on or
you'll get the flu!"
The "flu" is actually a highly contagious
infection of influenza type A or B which affects the whole body, generally during
December through April. It is spread by coughing or sneezing followed by hand
and face contact. Frequent hand washing is important for prevention. Moms should
say "Wash your hands or you'll get the flu!"
The flu causes a serious respiratory illness, that will infect up to 90 million
Americans this year and hospitalize nearly 300,000; up to 40,000 Americans will
die from the flu this year alone. While most flu hospitalizations affect the
elderly, a new study suggests that certain young and middle-aged women can develop
life-threatening flu complications and should be added to the list of those
who should be vaccinated.
Annual vaccines are the best way to prevent influenza. Yet most people at risk
neglect getting vaccinated each year. Influenza vaccine is strongly recommended
- Children under 2.
- Adults over 65.
- Anyone with a chronic illness
- Some pregnant women and
- Caretakers of any of the above
If you are at risk, get your vaccine sooner rather than later.
Click here for related information.
Created: 10/19/2000  - Donnica Moore, M.D.