Flu (Influenza)
Travel Health

From: Travel Health Information and Advice

Flu (Influenza)
Flu also known as Influenza is a well known viral infection that is easily transmitted by close contact with infected droplets in the air or on contaminated surfaces.

Symptoms of Flu
Symptoms of mild influenza often last for around a week and usually involve:

In severe cases of influenza, and those at high risk will require immediate medical attention, due to more serious conditions which can follow on, such as:

Cause of Flu
The influenza virus is often classified into type A which is the most common or type B which has milder symptoms. Both types often occur during the autumn and winter months.

Most At Risk From Flu
Those most at risk are people who already have a weakened immune system, anyone with medical conditions such as those affecting the heart or lungs, the elderly, very young children, pregnant women and people working in high risk areas such as schools, nursing homes or hospitals.

Preventing Flu
Those in a high risk group are often offered a annual influenza vaccination by their doctor.

If you have influenza take care not to further spread the virus by using a tissue when you sneeze and placing it in the bin afterwards. When coughing put your hand over your mouth to help prevent the spread of infection and thoroughly wash your hands at regular intervals. If possible stay at home if you have mild influenza to help prevent further spread of the virus.

Treatment for Flu
Many mild cases of influenza in healthy people will often not require medical attention and often pass after a week or two with no further problems. In these cases treatment usually involves plenty of rest and fluids.

However if the influenza is more severe or for those people who are in a high risk category, immediate medical attention should be sought. Without prompt treatment more serious illnesses can occur which can in some cases prove fatal. The use of antiviral drugs are often used to ease symptoms and shorten the duration of the illness.