CDC: Flu is on the rise

Caring For Our Kids

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – Flu is on the rise across the country, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Locally, doctors are starting to see more cases as well.

Dr. Katy Stordahl from East Tennessee Children’s Hospital stopped by the WATE 6 On Your Side studios to talk more about the flu.

According to Dr. Stordahl, since October, ETCH personnel have treated nearly 200 patients who tested positive for flu. More than 70 of those were treated the week of Thanksgiving.

“Flu season is always unpredictable, but numbers of cases do tend to increase after the holidays, in part because people are traveling and gathering together,” Stordahl said.

Signs & symptoms of the flu

  • A sudden fever
  • Chills and body aches
  • Headache
  • Being more tired than usual
  • Sore throat
  • Dry cough
  • Symptoms are much worse than a cold

At-risk groups for life-threatening complications with the flu

People over 65 years of age & young children – babies who can’t be vaccinated, are at higher risk and any child who has a chronic medical condition like asthma, cancer, diabetes or heart problems.

Complications with the flu

  • Pneumonia
  • Bronchitis
  • Sinus & Ear Infections
  • Dehydration

Preventing the flu

Doctors say that if you are able to receive a flu vaccine, do it.

The flu shot will protect you and those around you who may not be able to be vaccinated. It’s never too late, but remember it takes two weeks to become effective.

There is also good, thorough hand washing to keep germs from spreading, and, stay home if you are sick and keep children away from anyone who is sick.

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