Request a consultation with a Partner Practitioner for medical advice about the flu.
Influenza, more commonly known as a flu, is a common respiratory illness. It can easily spread from person to person through microscopic respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. In Australia 5 to 20% of the population will become infected, annually, with the outbreak season, occurring between late autumn and early spring.
It is crucial to recognise the symptoms of the flu in order to seek medical attention and prevent the spread of the virus to others. Common symptoms of the flu include:
Symptoms vary from person to person, with some experiencing some mild symptoms, and some more severe.
The flu is caused by influenza viruses, which belong to different strains, including influenza A, B, and C. These viruses are constantly changing, known as antigenic drift and antigenic shift, making it challenging to develop long-lasting immunity.
The primary transmission of the flu is through:
Preventing the flu reduces the risk of infection and minimises the impact on the community. Here are some essential preventative measures:
It can be difficult to distinguish between a common cold and flu as they present similar symptoms. Here are some distinguishing factors:
A healthcare practitioner can diagnose the flu based on a combination of symptoms and clinical evaluation. Laboratory testing can be required in some cases, or a rapid influenza diagnostic test (RIDT) using a swab sample from your nose or throat. This test can detect the presence of influenza viruses and provide results within minutes.
There are several treatment options if you are infected with the flu that will help in alleviating symptoms and promoting recovery:
Disclaimer: this can affect individuals differently and on a case by case basis. It it best to consult with your health practitioner to seek medical advice and receive a personalised diagnosis, and treatment plan.
Interests: Critical Care & Emergency
Education: Doctor of Medicine at Notre Dame University, Western Australia
Hobbies: Enjoys leisure time at the beach and playing tennis
Interests: General Medicine
Education: Bachelor of Medicine & Surgery
Hobbies: Enjoys working out, travelling and eating out
Interests: Preventative Healthcare
Education: Doctor of Medicine at University of New South Wales
Hobbies: Enjoys working in the garden outside
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