Flu (influenza) is a common, but serious, viral infection during the winter. This flu season appears to be much worse than last year and may even be a very severe one.
Symptoms of the flu include the following: fever, body aches, headache and fatigue. These symptoms can also be caused by many other viral infections. The Noro and rota viruses that cause stomach symptoms are also circulating. See the CDC websites for more information at http://www.cdc.gov/flu/spotlights/flu-activity-picks-up.htm;
Antiviral medications are available for the flu, though they are only effective if started within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms. These medications do not immediately cure the flu but generally decrease the length of illness.
The most important prevention for the flu is to get vaccinated against the flu. The flu vaccine starts providing protection against the flu within 14 days. Since the flu season typically peaks in February-March, getting a flu shot can still be very helpful, if you have not already gotten one.
Here are some specific guidelines:
Consider that you might have the flu if you have a temperature over 101 degrees, have headache, body aches and fatigue. In general, you should stay home with these symptoms to avoid spreading your illness to others. If you have had these symptoms for under 48 hours, antiviral treatments are effective. You can come to IUPUI Health Services (Coleman Hall 100) or Campus Center Student Health for treatment. Provider visit is $29; flu testing and antiviral medication (if recommended) is free.
If you are not sick, but have not had the flu shot, getting a flu shot is highly recommended. You can go to IUPUI Health Services to get a flu shot. No appointment needed for a flu shot. Call 317-274-8214 to make a provider appointment if you are feeling sick. Visit our website health.iupui.edu for more information.