Wednesday, January 18, 2017


Tis the season for colds, flus and other contagious bugs. 

Schools, workplaces and homes are inundated with contagions. Cold and flu viruses that infect the human nasal passages and lungs like it cold.  They seem to fester best in cooler temperatures when folks are hanging out indoors. 

This round hit my middle guy Liam over the Christmas holidays. Just as he started feeling better over the last week the youngest fella starts coughing and developed a very harsh throat. 

Not wanting the darn bug, I have been extra vigilant to wash my hands, stay hydrated and keep the sick ones restricted to their bedrooms, as much as possible.

However, like the Borg, escape from this bug seems futile. This morning, I woke with tickle in my throat, a stuffy nose with aches and pains all over my body. The man flu has arrived. The down side is no visits for a few days to the Caribou Veteran's Faciity to visit Pop. 

While we are in the middle of the Flu season, our doctor is saying this is most likely a Rhinoviruses that cause colds, apparently the they like tissue in the nose, sinuses, and throat. 

VOCM was reporting last week that there had been thirty confirmed cases of the flu in the province up to the end of 2016. The latest update from the Department of Health states that as of January 7, 2017, there have been 34 (30A, 4B) lab-confirmed cases of influenza, three hospitalizations and one ICU admission. Despite the wave of sniffles, sneezing and sore throats laboratory detections of influenza remain below seasonal levels!

With the flu season comes the vaccine lottery. Specialists use educated guesswork to predict which strain of the influenza will be tormenting us this year. New flu vaccines get released every year. Two kinds of vaccines are available for this season: one with three types of influenza A virus, and another containing the same three influenza A viruses plus a B strain. It all appears to be hit or miss, or mess :)

For those among us with a high risk of serious complications from influenza, the stakes can be high. In Canada the active influenza season generally starts in November and ends in March. 5365 hospitalizations were reported from the 2015/2016 influenza season. 270 fatalities were reported.

Have you gotten your flu shot yet? 

I haven’t, but it is on my to do list.

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