Tuesday, Dec 10, 2013
Doctors Say Prepare Early For Flu Season
WSIL -- With flu season just days away there's an early push to get everyone vaccinated before the symptoms kick in.
"Fever and body aches are the main things people complain about with influenza," said Dr. Erica Kaufman.
She predicts this year's flu season will start in October but advises her patients to get their vaccines right away.
"It takes about four to six weeks to get the maximum effect so the earlier you get the vaccine the better," explained Kaufman.
The vaccine is recommended for everyone over six months especially pregnant women, children, the elderly and those with chronic conditions.
Experts say getting the shot is just one of the steps to stay healthy.
"Wash any surfaces like cabinets, counter tops or door knobs anything you may touch or share," said Williamson County health director Carrie Eldridge.
She advises people to wash their hands throughout the day and says there are plenty of places to get this year's vaccine.
"When I first started here the lines were out the door and down the street but now that you can get a flu shot anywhere it's hard to keep that up," explained Eldridge.
Places to find this year's vaccine include local pharmacies, doctor's offices and health departments.
Dr. Kaufman hasn't seen any flu cases this fall but has handled several respiratory infections, which usually come right before flu season.
"RSV tends to come around before the flu so once we start to see an increase in those cases then we know influenza is not far behind," said Dr. Kaufman.
The Centers for Disease Control reports the flu leads to 200,000 hospitalizations and causes 20,000 deaths in this country every year.
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