Amarillo doctors make recommendations to flu patients

ER Now doctors recommend that flu patients stay home two days after a fever breaks before going into a crowd. (ABC 7 Amarillo-Tiffany Lester)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said last week 43 states had high patient traffic for the flu,, including here in Texas.

The virus remains widespread in every state except for Hawaii and Oregon.

"The flu this year, first of all, I think there’s more people affected by it and second of all it’s more virulent and it is causing people to become a little more sick," said Dr. Matthew Turney at an Amarillo ER Now.

Turney tells ABC 7 News it’s possibly the strain this year, which is H3N2, that’s causing the increase.

The CDC said this week, there has been one influenza-associated pediatric death and 13 outbreaks reported in Texas.

It added there have been 63 child deaths so far this flu season across the country.

"The flu is a dangerous type of infection, but the vast majority of people get better after the flu. It’s the people who either get a secondary infection such as pneumonia and then don’t get medical care afterwards that are a little higher at risk for having worsening problems," said Turney.

Doctors at ER Now on South Coulter tell ABC 7 News they’ve seen hundreds of patients with flu-like symptoms so far this flu season.

They said if a person experiences flu-like symptoms, they should get tested by having a nurse or doctor do a nasal swab.

Turney said that often times, flu patients will start feeling better after being treated, but will continue to have a fever. They’ll then go out into a crowd before completely healing from the virus, further spreading the virus.

He said they’ll then start to feel worse again with the onset of a second infection.

"100.4 degrees or greater is a fever. When you stop having the fever, it’s best to wait two more days to go back to large crowds because you don’t want to be giving that flu to other people," said Turney.

He said a flu patient should also drink plenty of fluids and get a lot of rest in order to properly recooperate and stop the spread of the virus.

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