Ill: you have a real flu or a cold?

Over the quite harmless flu and the real flu are different pathogens, but the symptoms are often very similar. Meanwhile, for the treatment it is important to distinguish between uncomplicated respiratory infections (flu, colds) flu — true influenza.

Заболели: что у вас — настоящий грипп или простуда?

Uncomplicated respiratory infection begins approximately two to eight days after infection and rarely last longer than a week. A sick person can distinguish pathogens for about two to ten days, in exceptional cases, for example, when treated with certain drugs (steroids), even longer.

Cold. Typical cold symptoms are redness of the throat and mild pain in the throat,
runny nose (which is initially watery, but after three or four days noticeably compacted),
nasal congestion,
headache and body aches,
General fatigue and cough.

Patients, however, there is a slight temperature, or lack thereof, is one of the differences colds flu. Even people with respiratory diseases such as allergic asthma, do not usually have more serious symptoms during viral colds than people without these diseases. At the same time, if with colds, people with asthma are faced with the causes of their disease, they may exhibit more severe disease symptoms and may be subject to asthma attacks.

What is different about this flu? This flu is no specific uniform symptoms: symptoms of flu can be very similar to the symptoms of uncomplicated colds. But often, influenza is typically a very sudden onset – never with sharp deterioration of health, fever up to 39 degrees. Also this may occur:

The entire complex is well-known to doctors as “symptoms of a flu-like illness”.

In elderly patients, the flu often begins quietly. Usually the symptoms last from 7 to 14 days, thus there is a General feeling of weakness and loss of appetite that may persist for several weeks. The frequency of complications of influenza in this group of patients above.

In General, unlike a cold, real flu can cause very serious consequences. In principle, in the flu, complications can occur at any age, but they mostly affect people with underlying diseases (chronic disease of the heart, lungs or metabolism, immunodeficiencies, etc.).

The most dangerous complications are sudden death for adolescents and young adults within hours, and the incidence of pneumonia (primary influenza pneumonia), provoked directly by the flu virus .

Other complications of flu can be inflammation of the brain (encephalitis) and heart (myocarditis). Children may develop ear infection (otitis media).

The ability to infect a person with the flu is occurring — unlike a cold shortly before the onset of clinical symptoms, and then usually persists for three to five days. Sick young children are particularly contagious: they spread the virus longer than adults.