Influenza active in Cass County



Influenza active in Cass County

Cass County Health System officials are informing the public today that there have been multiple cases of influenza (flu) positively identified in community members over the last few days, bringing the total to 34 cases of Influenza A and two cases of Influenza B identified over the past two weeks. Affected patients range from 0 to 99 years of age. CCHS staff are encouraging everyone to exercise precautions to avoid contracting influenza and to contact their medical provider immediately if they experience symptoms.

“Influenza is a serious respiratory illness that can progress rapidly,” noted Dr. Todd Bean, Chief Medical Officer. “It is important to use good hygiene practices to avoid contracting influenza if possible, and to seek medical treatment if you think you may have the flu.” People most at risk to develop complications from influenza include children under age 2, those over age 65, pregnant women and people with multiple health conditions or suppressed immune systems. Dr. Bean notes that true influenza is different than what people often refer to as stomach flu. Influenza is a respiratory illness caused by a virus. Antibiotics will be ineffective unless a secondary infection such as pneumonia develops as a consequence of contracting influenza. Influenza symptoms usually come on very quickly and may include fever, headache, extreme tiredness, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, and body aches.

Dr. Bean notes that it is important to seek medical treatment quickly if you experience a sudden onset of influenza symptoms. “The good news is that we have medications that can reduce both the symptoms and the length of an influenza illness. However, it is most effective if the medications are started with 48 hours from when a patient begins to feel ill.”Of course, prevention is always the best medicine.

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