OSU MyChart Login
 
News and events
The Flu Facts
October 2, 2009

The Flu Facts:
Learn more about the season flu and H1N1 (or swine flu), where to get vaccinated, and the symptoms to look for.

Get Vaccinated:

With the addition of H1N1, this year’s flu season is more unpredictable than ever. One thing you can do to protect yourself and your family is to get the seasonal flu vaccine as soon as it is offered. A vaccine to protect against H1N1 will be available sometime in October. Remember that you must receive vaccines for both to provide the best level of protection.

There should be no excuse not to get vaccinated. About 30-50 percent of those infected with the flu don’t have any symptoms yet can still spread the flu to family members and co-workers. You are able to infect others with the flu at least one day before you have symptoms.

For more information on getting vaccinated for both the seasonal flu and H1N1, contact the Madison County Health Department, 740-852-3065, 306 Lafayette St #B, London, Ohio, http://www.co.madison.oh.us/10122/index.html.

Symptoms:
Until you see a physician and receive a diagnosis, think “flu” if the following symptoms are present: fever WITH coughing and/or sore throat, runny and stuffy nose, headaches and/or body aches, chills, fatigue, vomiting and diarrhea. However, you can spread the flu before you have any symptoms. People are contagious a full day before they even know they are sick.

Protect Yourself:
In addition to getting vaccinated, according to the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) website, you can do the following to help protect yourself from both the seasonal and H1N1 virus:

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.

If you are sick with flu-like illness, CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.) Keep away from others as much as possible to keep from making others sick.

Who is at Risk for Seasonal Flu?
According to the CDC’s website, the following are at high risk for seasonal flu:

  • Children 6 months through 18 years of age
  • Pregnant women
  • People 50 years of age and older
  • People of any age with certain chronic medical conditions
  • People who live in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.

People who live with or care for those at high risk for complications from seasonal flu should also get a seasonal flu vaccine:

  • Household contacts of persons at high risk for complications from the flu
  • Household contacts and out-of-home caregivers of children less than 6 months of age (these children are too young to be vaccinated)
  • Healthcare workers.

Who is at Risk for H1N1?
According to their website, the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has recommended that the following groups receive the H1N1 vaccine when it first becomes available:

  • Pregnant women
  • People who live with or care for children younger than 6 months of age
  • Healthcare and emergency medical services personnel
  • Persons between the ages of 6 months and 24 years old
  • People ages of 25 through 64 years of age who are at higher risk because of chronic health disorders or compromised immune systems

What should I do if I get sick?
http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/qa.htm

If you live in areas where people have been identified with 2009 H1N1 flu and become ill with influenza-like symptoms, including fever, body aches, runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, nausea, or vomiting or diarrhea, you should stay home and avoid contact with other people.

CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.) Stay away from others as much as possible to keep from making others sick. Staying at home means that you should not leave your home except to seek medical care. This means avoiding normal activities, including work, school, travel, shopping, social events, and public gatherings.

If you have severe illness or you are at high risk for flu complications, contact your health care provider or seek medical care. Your health care provider will determine whether flu testing or treatment is needed.

If you become ill and experience any of the following warning signs, seek emergency medical care.

In children, emergency warning signs that need urgent medical attention include:

  • Fast breathing or trouble breathing
  • Bluish or gray skin color
  • Not drinking enough fluids
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Not waking up or not interacting
  • Being so irritable that the child does not want to be held
  • Flu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough

In adults, emergency warning signs that need urgent medical attention include:

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Sudden dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Severe or persistent vomiting
  • Flu-like symptoms improve but then return with fever and worse cough

Resources: 
For one-stop access to U.S. Government H1N1, avian, and pandemic flu information visit HYPERLINK "http://www.flu.gov/" http://www.flu.gov/.

For more information about the flu in Ohio, visit the Ohio Department of Health at http://www.odh.ohio.gov/.

Updated H1N1 information and case counts can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/" http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/.

Related info
Madison County Hospital
210 North Main Street
London, Ohio 43140
Directions and maps
Toll free: 866.357.4677
Local: 740.845.7000
Contact us