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Doctor insights on: Flu

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Dr. Heidi Fowler
1,889 doctors shared insights

Flu (Overview)

The flu, otherwise known as influenza, is a viral infection of the nose and throat. Symptoms of influenza include fever, chills, runny nose, muscle aches, fatigue, malaise, headaches, and coughing. Children with the flu often have nausea and vomiting as well. Some strains of the flu are preventable by getting a yearly flu vaccine (a "flu shot").


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What are some OTC medicines for the cold and flu?

What are some OTC medicines for the cold and flu?

Many available: Adults' over-the-counter medicines for colds are ok to use if one follows the labels' instructions, stays below maximum doses, and is not using more than one medicine of each type. Fever/pain reducers include tylenol (acetaminophen) or motrin/advil. Cough meds include Robitussin (some people use dm, some avoid it). Decongestants and antihistamines include claritin-d, zyrtec-d, Benadryl +/- phenylephrine, sudafed. ...Read more

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Dr. Heidi Fowler
1,889 doctors shared insights

Flu (Overview)

The flu, otherwise known as influenza, is a viral infection of the nose and throat. Symptoms of influenza include fever, chills, runny nose, muscle aches, fatigue, malaise, headaches, and coughing. Children with the flu often have nausea and vomiting as well. Some strains of the flu are preventable by getting a yearly flu vaccine (a "flu shot").


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What's the difference between a cold and a flu?

What's the difference between a cold and a flu?

Fever and vomiting: Cold: sore throat, nasal congestion and drainage, and cough. Fevers may occur in children, but are uncommon in adults. Flu: sore throat, fever, headache, muscle aches, soreness, congestion, and cough. Vomiting and diarrhea may also occur. Both are caused by viruses and usually last for 3-7 days. ...Read more

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Preventing the Flu (Checklist)

Get plenty of sleep
daily
Avoid contact with sick people
Once
Avoid touching your face before washing your hands
Once
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What should I do if my baby is too young for a flu shot?

What should I do if my baby is too young for a flu shot?

Shoot everyone else: Flu shots are recommended for anyone over 6 months of age. If your baby is younger that that, make sure everyone else in the household or has contact with your child gets the flu shot. Also for younger infants it is a good idea to avoid contact with anyone who has a cold if possible. ...Read more

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What do you recommend for influenza?

What do you recommend for influenza?

Prevention with shot: Prevention is the best answer. Although the flu vaccine isn't 100%, it offers your best chance of avoiding or getting a milder case of influenza. If you have influenza and you've been sick <48hr, your doctor might prescribe tamiflu (oseltamivir). Influenza ususally lasts 7-10days, and tamiflu (oseltamivir) only reduces the duration by 1-2 days, so even with tamiflu (oseltamivir), you won't feel better quickly, but may be less severe. ...Read more

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Treating the Stomach Flu (Checklist)

See a doctor if you are vomiting/stooling uncontrollably
Once
Hydrate yourself to keep up with your losses. Water is best.
Daily
Practice good hand washing to help prevent spread of stomach viruses
Daily
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Are there any flu remedies?

Are there any flu remedies?

Antiviral: If you have the flu hydrate well w water, herbal teas, soup or juice. Drink sufficiently to have pale to light yellow urine. You can use pain relievers like tylenol (acetaminophen) or nsaid’s. Rest a lot! in some situations antiviral medications (tamiflu, relenza, flumadine) may be prescribed within the first couple of days of symptoms to hasten healing or they can be used after flu exposure to prevent illness. ...Read more

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What does a low hemoglobin mean?

What does a low hemoglobin mean?

Leeding: Low hemog.Lobin is most often associated with GI tract bleeding disorders such as myelofibrosis where the marrow is fibrosed and not proucing rbcs can also ause this problem. One checks stool for blood followed by olonoscopy, if in the uppere GI tract and not seen on gastroscoopy, a tv capsule swolled and follwed on tv can frequently define a lesion in the small intestine that is bleeding. ...Read more

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What exactly makes up a flu shot vaccine?

What exactly makes up a flu shot vaccine?

Not live...: The flu vaccine does not have any live flu virus. Rather, it consists of killed virus or protein from the virus. Your immune system then reacts against the virus protein and makes antibodies so that if your body then is exposed to the actual virus, the antibodies needed to kill it are already there. This prevents you from getting sick from the virus since the antibodies kill it first! ...Read more

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What are symptoms of the common cold and what are signs that it is something more serious?

What are symptoms of the common cold and what are signs that it is something more serious?

Sx's: Common cold symptoms include: Cough, congestion, watery eyes, sneezing, sore throat, mild headache, low grade fever & mild body aches. According to Mayo Clinic Flu sxs may include “Fever over 100F (38C), Aching muscles, especially in your back, arms and legs, Chills & sweats, Headache, Dry Cough, Fatigue and weakness, Nasal Congestion.” ...Read more

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