Why Flu Season Has Been Severe


Tina Q. Tan, MD, discusses the particular severity of the ongoing flu season.

Segment Description: Tina Q. Tan, MD, professor of pediatrics at the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, discusses the particular severity of the ongoing flu season.

Interview Transcript (modified slightly for readability):

Tan: Part of what's causing the severity has to do with the influenza virus strains that are circulating. This is a bit of an unusual year in that we started very early. Flu started circulating at the end of September. We also started with a different flu strain that usually circulates first. We started with an influenza B strain. Later in December, we had an influenza A strain that started circulating. Now both viruses are circulating pretty much equally. However, there has been a second wave of disease that has started after the new year and it's been particularly severe in children.

In order to prevent illness, be vaccinated. For those individuals who have not been vaccinated, it is still not too late to get a vaccine.

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