flumedhelp by twincities


									                   Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Prevention and Control Division
                   PO Box 64975
                   St. Paul, MN 55164-0975
                   651-201-5414 or 877-676-5414

When to Get Medical Help for Flu Symptoms
What are the symptoms of influenza?                              •    Is pregnant or delivered with the last two weeks
You may have the influenza (flu) if you have some                •    Is a child under 2 years of age
or all of these symptoms:                                        •    Has neurologic or neuromuscular disorder,
• fever                                                               asthma or chronic lung diseases like COPD or
• cough                                                               cystic fibrosis, heart disease (except high blood
• sore throat                                                         pressure), liver or kidney disease, a blood
• runny or stuffy nose                                                disorder (such as sickle cell disease), metabolic
• body aches                                                          or endocrine disorders (such as diabetes),
• headache                                                            severely obese, weakened immune system due
• chills                                                              to disease or medicines (including HIV/AIDS,
• very tired                                                          cancer chemotherapy, on long term steroids, or
• sometimes diarrhea and vomiting                                     anti-rejection drugs for transplants)
                                                                 •    Is 65 or older
What should I do if I get sick?                                  •    Is American Indian and Alaska Native
Most people are sick with the flu for 3-5 days and
                                                                 Health care providers will determine whether
get better on their own. People without high-risk
                                                                 influenza testing and possible treatment are needed.
conditions that aren't very sick, don't need to seek
                                                                 Your health care provider may prescribe antiviral
medical help, but should:
                                                                 drugs that can treat the flu. These drugs work better
• Stay home. Avoid contact with other people as
    much as you can to keep from spreading your                  for treatment the sooner they are started.
    illness to others.                                           Get medical help immediately for these
• Rest and drink lots of fluids.                                 symptoms
• Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when
                                                                 Infants and Children
    you cough or sneeze, or cough or sneeze into
    your sleeve.                                                 • Fast breathing or trouble breathing
• Wash your hands often – with soap and water,                   • Bluish skin color
    or a hand sanitizer                                          • Not drinking enough fluids
• If necessary, take medicine to reduce fever.                   • Not urinating or no tears when crying
• Watch for symptoms of more serious illness.                    • Severe or repeated vomiting
    (see below)                                                  • Not waking up or not interacting
                                                                 • Being so irritable that the child does not want to
Call your health care provider if you or a family
                                                                    be held
member has symptoms you are concerned about,                     • Pain or pressure in chest or belly
such as a very high fever.                                       • Sudden dizziness
Seek medical care for people at high-risk                        • Confusion
                                                                 • Flu-like symptoms that get better but then return
Some people are at high risk of getting very ill from
                                                                    with fever and worse cough
flu. The following people should call their health               • Fever with a rash
care provider as soon as symptoms of flu illness
                                                                 • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
www.mdhflu.com                                                                    When to Get Medical Help for Flu Symptoms
When to Get Medical Help for Flu Symptoms – Page 2

•   Pain or pressure in the chest or belly
•   Sudden dizziness
•   Confusion
•   Severe or repeated vomiting
•   Flu-like symptoms that get better but then return
    with fever and worse cough
•   Severe dehydration

Who should take antiviral drugs?
Most healthy people who get the flu do not need
antiviral drug treatment.

It’s very important that antiviral drugs be used early
to treat people who are very sick with the flu (for
example people who are in the hospital) and those
with high-risk factors that increase their chance of
serious complications from influenza.
When should I go to the emergency room?
If you get sick with flu symptoms and are at high
risk of flu complications or you are concerned about
your illness, call your health care provider for
advice. You should only go to the emergency room
if you need to seek immediate medical care.
How long should I stay home if I’m sick?
Stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is
gone except to get medical care. (Your fever should
be gone without the use of a fever-reducing
Don’t wait to get sick.
Vaccination increases your odds of preventing
influenza – get vaccinated; it’s not too late.

www.mdhflu.com                                           When to Get Medical Help for Flu Symptoms

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