The first is to understand what is flu and what is not. Flu is a disease that has an incubation period of 24 or 48 hours and is accompanied by fever. Not 37.5 degrees. I am talking about fever, and fever is more than 38.5 and sometimes up to 39. And it also causes cough and phlegm. And those symptoms can last longer. But at most the fever lasts for four or five days and the muscle pain usually goes away in six or seven days. What can happen is that the cough persists for two weeks or more. And then it gradually disappears.
It happens that at times the flu gets confused with other cold viruses. There are many viruses that can cause sneezing, coughing, mucus… The basic difference is fever and muscle aches. That’s the difference between the flu and other cold viruses. And these catarrhal processes can be more or less strong. And obviously smokers or individuals with bronchial problems, ie chronic bronchitis or those who have allergies, may develop a prolonged cough and mucus build-up.
But there is no data to say that this year the flu, ie the illness caused by the flu virus, is lasting longer than usual. It is also true that this winter the month of December was very humid, and after that a severe cold has come, with icy and dry air making many people cough and runny nose, but not flu.
What can happen is what, on the other hand, has always happened: that many people who have the flu still cough for a while, when they can get out of bed and start to feel better. Is. To put it in some way of what also happens with the flu virus, it consumes a lot of the immune system, and after it’s passed you feel tired for a few days, you feel tired , Etcetera. This is also the case with other diseases such as measles, which make you tired once the acute period of illness has passed. But that doesn’t mean you still have flu, you’ve already gotten over the disease and certainly can’t spread it, although some symptoms may last up to three weeks.
This year is turning out to be just like any other year, luckily it hasn’t been more intense or longer lasting. It may also happen with some people that they have had the flu and after suffering from it they have got a cold and they feel like they have gone through the same process. But, in fact, there have been two in a row. It is important to note that flu is fought with fluids, preferably warm, and some medicines to reduce fever, but never with antibiotics, as these medicines do not work against the virus that causes flu. .
Maria Elisa Puron Street He is a medical expert in epidemiology, preventive medicine and public health.
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