Record high people affected in this year’s flu season

Aneliese Baker, Staff Reporter

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The flu season is approaching its end in Australia, and the number of people affected hit record highs. The composition of the flu virus there is the same as in the U.S, so many doctors here predict that the season here will also be particularly bad. The flu medication there is also the same as the one used to treat patients here, and it was only effective in ten per-cent of cases.

Every year, the virus morphs, and the pharmaceutical industry does its best to predict the type of medicine needed to combat the year’s strain, but the process is always hit or miss.

“Last year, flu shots were only 42 per-cent effective due to a mutation in the Influenza A (H3N2) strain resulting from an egg-based manufacturing process,” said a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the virus is already hitting the States. The strain is expected to be A, which is typically much more responsible for large epidemics than B strains.

Hodges Boland (11) had the flu earlier this year.
“I had symptoms of throwing up, migraines, and body aches which lasted for four days,” Boland said.

Boland took medical-grade headache medicine he got from his doctor neighbor to alleviate the pain.

Boland had not received his flu shot this year, but seemed to get better quickly with medication nonetheless.

Nishi Patel (12) had the flu this November.

“I was super sleepy and lethargic and I puked a lot. My nose was really runny and I lost my voice at times. These symptoms lasted for eight days,” Patel said.

A frequent occurrence in flu victims is not realizing the extent of their sickness, and mistaking it for common cold.

“I didn’t go to the doctor, but I should have. My mom’s friend is a doctor, and she prescribed me mucus relief medication as well as pills similar to DayQuil and NyQuil,” Patel said.

Patel has had a recent flu shot, proving the erratic and often ineffective results of flu medication.

Despite expected shortcomings of the vaccine, the CDC still recommends that all citizens over six months old get the flu shot.

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