Medical City Weatherford has treated its first flu patient of the 2018 season, prompting emergency room experts to urge precautions to prevent the highly contagious virus from spreading.
“After experiencing an increased spike of influenza activity last year, we are urging community members to take precautions to protect themselves this season,” said Cyndi Aguirre, director of emergency services at Medical City Weatherford. “Perhaps the most vital step an individual can take to avoid the flu is taking the time to get a flu shot.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines the typical flu season as late fall to early spring and recommends vaccination before the onset of flu activity in the community. FluMist, a needle-free option, is again available this season.
Normal flu symptoms
There are some telltale signs of the flu that most people can expect to experience, though not everyone will have all symptoms. These include:
- Fatigue (tiredness)
- Muscle or body aches
- Sore throat
- Stuffy nose
- Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.
Serious symptoms that are cause for concern
In addition to the typical signs of flu, there are some age-dependent factors that may indicate a more serious problem. These are some of the potentially dangerous symptoms:
- Trouble eating
- Difficulty breathing
- Crying without tears
- Fewer wet diapers than usual
- Breathing problems
- Bluish skin tone
- Trouble drinking adequate fluids
- Difficulty waking up or interacting with others
- Increased or unusual irritability
- Improvement in flu symptoms to later return with fever and cough
- Fever accompanied by a rash
- Shortness of breath
- Abdominal discomfort or chest pain
- Sudden dizziness
- Extreme or persistent vomiting
- Flu-like symptoms that improve but then return with fever and worse cough
If experiencing these symptoms, seek emergent care.
To find a local physician, call 682-218-5230. Medical City Healthcare also offers convenient Virtual Care allowing patients to see and talk to a clinician from a mobile device or computer, no appointment necessary.