Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 3


Influenza (also known as the flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused

by flu viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death.
The flu is different from a cold. The flu usually comes on suddenly. People who
have the flu often feel some or all of these symptoms:

Fever* or feeling feverish/chills


Sore throat

Runny or stuffy nose

Muscle or body aches


Fatigue (tiredness)

Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in
children than adults.

* It's important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.

These symptomps typically begin two days after exposure to the virus and
most last less than a week. The cough , however, may last for more than two
weeks. In children, there may be nausea and vomiting , but these are not
common in adults. Nausea and vomiting occur more commonly in the unrelated
infection gastroenteritis, which is sometimes inaccuratelyreferred to as stomach
flu or 24-hour flu . complications of influenza may include viral pneumonia,
secondary bacterial pneumonia, sinus infections, and worsening of previous
health problems such as asthma or heart failure.

Yearly influenza epidemics can seriously affect all populations, but the
highest risk of complications occur among children younger than age 2 years,
adults aged 65 years or older, pregnant women, people of any age with certain
medical conditions, such as chronic heart, lung, kidney liver, blood or metabolic
diseases ( such as diabetes ), or weakened immune systems, travelers and
people living abroad.
Influenza spreads easily and can sweep through schools, nursing homes,
businesses or towns. Influenza epidemics occur mainly during winter while in
tropical regions, influenza may occur throughout the year, causing outbreaks
more irregularly.

Influenza occurs globally with an annual attack rate estimated at 5%-10%

in adults and 20%-30% in children. Illnesses can result in hospitalization and
death mainly among high-risk groups ( the very young, elderly or chronically ill ).
Worldwide, these annual epidemics are estimated to result in about 3 to 5 million
cases of severe illnes, and about 250.000 to 500.000 deaths.

In industrialized countries most deaths associated with influenza occur

among people age 65 or older. Epidemics can result in high levels of
worker/school absenteeism and productivity losses. Clinics and hospitals can be
overwbelmed during peak illness periods.

The precise effects of ibfluenza epidemics in developing countries are not

known, but research estimates indicate that a large percent of childs deaths
associated with influenza occur in developing countries every year.

How to avoid risks of influenza includes , people should cover their mouth
and nose with a tissue when coughing, and wash their hands regularly with soap
and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
Linens, eating utensils, and dishes belonging to those who are sick should not be
shared without washing thoroughly first. Eating utensils can be washed either in
dishwasher or by hand with water and soap and do not need to be cleaned
separately. Further, frequently touched surfaces should be cleaned and
disinfected at home, work, school, especially if someone is ill.

But the most effective way to avoid risks of the disease and/or severe
outcomes from the ilness is vaccination. Safe and effective vaccines are available
and have been used for more than 60 years. Among healthy adults, influenza
vaccinecan provide reasonable protection. However among the elderly, influenza
vaccine may be less effective in preventing illness but may reduce severity of
disease and incidence of complications and deaths.

Vaccination is especially important for peple at higher risk of serious

influenza complications, and for people who live with or care for high risk
WHO recommends annual vaccination for pregnant women at any stage of
pregnancy, children aged 6 months to 5 years, elderly individuals ( 65 years of
age ), individuals with chronic medical conditions, and health-care workers.