Influenza, also known commonly as the flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs.
Influenza can cause mild to severe illness and may sometimes lead to death. The best way to prevent getting the flu is by getting a flu vaccine (shot) every year. The most common symptoms include a high fever, runny nose, sore throat, muscle pains, headache, coughing and tiredness.
Emergency Room Flu Treatment
The flu, or influenza, may seem common, but it can still be a life-threatening illness if it is not treated properly. Our board-certified emergency room doctors are available 24 hours to diagnose and treat the flu to alleviate the symptoms.
SignatureCare Emergency Center ERs are equipped with top-of-the-line testing and diagnostic technology. Schedule an appointment at the emergency room near you or just walk in. We treat all medical emergencies 24/7.
Regular Flu (Influenza) Symptoms
Detecting the flu early is important towards minimizing its impact on your life. Various flu symptoms exist that will appear one to three days after you are infected by the contagious virus.
These early flu symptoms include:
- Sore throat
- Severe fatigue
- Dehydration from diarrhea and/or vomiting
- High fever (102 degrees and more), increased sweating and frequent chills
- General joint and muscle pains, especially in the back and legs
- An initial dry cough that turns into a serious cough at times (mucous is often coughed up)
Flu symptoms in children
The flu or influenza virus causes all the above symptoms in children but your child may have other symptoms that require medical attention including:
- Not drinking enough fluids
- Crying without shedding tears
- Not waking up or interacting
- Refusing to eat
- Fever with a rash
- Difficulty urinating
Common Cause of Influenza (Flu)
The flu (influenza) is caused by the extremely contagious flu virus. You are exposed to this virus when you are around infected people who cough and sneeze continuously. Fluids are spread through the air, and when you encounter them, it is likely to infect you as well.
See also: The Difference Between the Common Cold and the Flu.
The same fluids may end up on common surfaces and if you touch those surfaces and then touch your mouth, eyes or nose, that could infect you.
If you have a reduced immunity or an underlying medical condition and spend much time around infected individuals, you are likely to become infected too. If you are not immunized, you could easily spread the virus to others who encounter you regularly.
Certain people are more likely to be infected with the flu virus:
- Staff members in nursing homes and long-term care facilities
- Caregivers of homeless people
- Direct caregivers in public and private hospitals
- Individuals who care for an individual with a chronic illness or anyone who is aged 65 or older
- People working with children daily
- People involved in the pig or poultry industry
When to Visit Emergency Room for the Flu
- Coughing up yellow or green mucous
- Severe headaches
- Difficulty breathing
If you are experiencing severe influenza or flu symptoms, please visit the closest emergency room. SignatureCare Emergency Center has several emergency room locations with board certified physicians, and we are open 24/7. Schedule an emergency room appointment with us today if you are experiencing flu symptoms.