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Flu Symptoms


Thursday, July 25, 2013, 1:56 PM - Influenza, or the flu, is a common and highly contagious, infectious respiratory disease that affects the nose, throat and lungs. Influenza viruses can change rapidly. That’s why there is a new flu shot made every year to protect against the circulating virus strains.

Seasonal Flu - Symptoms 

Almost always:
• Sudden onset of cough and fever

Sometimes:
• Nausea
• Vomiting
• Diarrhea

Common:
• Fatigue
• Muscle aches
• Sore throat
• Headache
• Decreased appetite
• Runny nose

Common Cold - What is it?
A cold is a mild infection of the nose and throat caused by a variety of viruses. Although a cold might linger, the symptoms remain mild.

Common Cold - Symptoms
• Runny nose
• Sneezing
• Cough
• Sore throat

Severity Indicators
If you develop the following symptoms, you need to see a health care provider right away:
• Shortness of breath, rapid or difficulty breathing
• Chest pain
• Bluish or grey skin color
• Bloody or coloured mucus/spit
• Sudden dizziness or confusion
• Severe or persistent vomiting
• High fever lasting more than three days
• Low blood pressure

Additional symptoms to watch for in children:
• Not drinking enough fluids or eating
• Not waking up or interacting
• Irritability; not wanting to play or be held

People at Risk of Complications:
The following groups are not more likely to get the flu. However, they are more at risk of developing complications if they do get sick:
• Children under five years of age (especially those less than two years old)
• Women who are pregnant
• Aboriginal people
• People with chronic conditions such as:
    - Heart disease
    - Liver disease
    - Kidney disease
    - Blood disorder
    - Diabetes
    - Severe obesity
    - Asthma and chronic lung disease
    - Immunosuppressed (people taking cancer drugs or people with HIV AIDS)
    - Neurological disorders

IMPORTANT: If you have flu symptoms and you have one of these risk factors, contact a health care provider as soon as possible - antiviral medications may be needed.

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