Flu (Influenza) Medical Information

Flu, also known as influenza, is a respiratory infection caused by influenza A or B viruses. Flu is easily spread through person to person contact through air droplets of respiratory secretions or contact with infected surfaces. Flu can be mild, however, there are severe cases which can affect those with compromised immunity, the elderly, infants, and those with chronic illness. While the flu can be relieved at times with no medical intervention, there are some treatments which can alleviate flu symptoms. Antiviral therapy is recommended for individuals with severe diseases or at high risk for complications. Antiviral therapy is also recommended for those who present for treatment within 48 hours after onset of illness, healthcare workers, or those in contact with high risk individuals.

Signs and Symptoms

  • fever or chills
  • cough
  • sore throat
  • runny or stuffy nose
  • muscle or body aches
  • headaches
  • fatigue 
  • some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.