Influenza is here with a roar but symptoms are a little different this year. We are seeing headaches, mild sore throat, chills, fevers 100-105 and a significant cough. Many parents come in worried their child has strep or pneumonia. Some helpful hints to distinguish flu from this are:
- In the flu, a child’s throat doesn’t hurt (or will hurt mildly) when swallowing. Ask your child if it hurts to swallow?
- In the flu, when the fever is down kids are not breathing rapidly.
- The course of the flu is: (A) Fever 102 and even to 105 for 3-5days. (B) Cough for 2 weeks. (C) Fatigue for up to 2 weeks.
If a fever goes beyond 5-7 days or leaves only to come back in 24-48 hours the patient needs to be seen. Also anytime you may think they are significantly dehydrated please call our office.
- Any child two and under and kids with chronic diseases such as moderate persistent asthma (not mild), diabetes, serious kidney disorder, or on immunosuppressive drugs for lupus, arthritis or Inflammatory Bowel Disorders – Please call our office.
- Push fluids and Ibuprofen or Tylenol
How is this flu different than flu before
- It seems to have fewer body aches and may appear to be less ill.
- The season started with Flu B instead of the usual Flu A. Why? We don’t know.
Coronavirus from China
Today you may have heard in the paper or online about the Coronavirus (also known as the Wuhan Virus) arriving from China. Like any new virus, we don’t have a clear sense of how severe it is other than it is associated with people with weaker immune systems. Often at the beginning of an outbreak, we hear about the most severe cases, often in the elderly, and then discover the virus is much more widespread and milder to people with healthier immune systems. We encourage all of our patients to stay up to date by visiting the direct CDC website linked below.
CDC Coronavirus Link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/index.html
As always, feel free to call us if you’re concerned.
All of Us at Westwood-Mansfield Pediatric Associates