The three types of influenza virus are: type A, B and C. It is impossible to tell the difference between influenza A and B from the symptoms that a patient will present, but influenza C causes a much milder illness resembling a cold.
Yearly flu shots are readily available to protect you against infection. See your doctor or go to an emergency clinic if you have any concerns about your condition when you have the flu.
The flu will present with some or all of these symptoms
- sore throat
- runny or stuffy nose
- body aches
- diarrhea and vomiting
When to see a doctor
Most people with the flu do not need medical care or antiviral drugs. In most cases the virus will run its course in a few days and will resolve on its own. You should definitely stay home and avoid contact with other people except to get medical care if needed. The CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hrs after your fever is gone without using OTC medication.
Certain people are at high risk of developing serious flu-related complications; these high risk groups include: young children, those 65 and older, pregnant women and people with certain medical conditions. If you are in a high risk group and develop flu symptoms, it is best for you to contact your doctor. Your doctor will determine whether influenza testing and treatment are needed and may prescribe antiviral drugs that can treat the flu. These drugs work better for treatment the sooner they are started.
When to seek emergency treatment
- Not waking up or not interacting
- Fast breathing or trouble breathing
- Bluish skin color
- Not drinking enough fluids
- Being so irritable that the child does not want to be held
- Flu-like symptoms improve but then return even worse
- Fever with a rash
In addition to the signs above, get medical help right away for any infant who has any of these signs:
- Being unable to eat
- Trouble breathing
- Has no tears when crying
- Significantly fewer wet diapers than normal
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
- Sudden dizziness
- Severe or persistent vomiting
- Flu-like symptoms that improve but then return with fever and worse cough
Medfast Urgent Care Centers offer fast, professional medical treatment for flu virus. Our average wait time to see patients is less than an hour, compared to Hospital Emergency Rooms, which can sometimes take longer than three to four hours and are much more expensive. We are professionally staffed with highly-skilled, licensed doctors and nurses, and fully equipped to handle testing and treatment for flu virus.