No, it isnt too late to get a flu shot

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It's possible to be infected with the flu virus and not even know it.

People over the age of 65, young children, pregnant women and people with underlying health conditions like asthma and heart disease are the most at risk groups.

The health board has also offered general advice to anyone suffering from flu and how to help prevent its spread.

The California death toll is rapidly growing as this season's massive flu outbreak has left hospitals across the USA overcrowded and pharmacies running out of medication to treat the virus.

Every winter there are a few strains circulating and Aussie flu or H3N2 is just one of them. But this week, they treated more than 200 patients in a day.

It can be either acute - where a temporary inflammation occurs and lasts up to three weeks - or chronic - lasting for several months and often reoccurring.

Influenza is described by the CDC as a "contagious respiratory illness" that can vary from mild to potentially fatal in its severity.

It can become more complicated if it spreads into the lungs, usually causing pneumonia - about one in 20 cases ends up like this.

Churches in Northern Ireland have even banned the "sign of peace" handshakes in an effort to curb the risk of infection which has caused one death in the Republic of Ireland.

When you have pneumonia, the alveoli - tiny air sacs where oxygen and carbon dioxide are exchanged - fill with fluid.

The Avian influenza virus is harvested from a chicken egg as part of a diagnostic process in this undated U.S. Department of Agriculture handout image. U.S. farm and health officials are racing to assess the threat that a type of bird flu never bef
It's flu season and in West Michigan, flu cases are on the rise

Some experience vomiting and diarrhea, although that is more common in children.

Dr. Michael Ison, a professor of Infectious Diseases at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine, stated that in years when the predominant strain is H3N2, there are more hospitalizations, more severe disease, and people tend to get sicker.

The recommendation to not use the nasal spray flu vaccine was renewed for the 2017-2018 season.

A quadrivalent recombinant flu vaccine (a vaccine created to protect against four different flu viruses; two influenza A viruses and two influenza B viruses), is available this season.

Some 4.5million people are thought to have been struck down by flu over the past week, according to online tool FluSurvey.

Experts warn this year's flu season could be worst than other years and with school back in session, it means its open season for the flu virus to spread.

Most of the time the illness goes away on its own and can not be treated with antibiotics.

"It is not too late to get vaccinated". "They look at data and surveillance to determine what's going to be likely during the next season, and unfortunately, we're in influenza A season and the type of influenza A that is going around was not a good match for the Influenza A that was in the vaccine".

Of those, the CDC estimates that as many as 56,000 have died from the viral infection in a given recent year.

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