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Influenza, also called "the flu," is a viral infection that mainly affects the respiratory tract. This includes the lungs, nose, and throat. The flu spreads easily from person to person (is contagious). It causes common cold symptoms, along with high fever and body aches.
If the flu is diagnosed early, you can be treated with antiviral medicine that is given by mouth (orally) or through an IV. This can help reduce how severe the illness is and how long it lasts.
In many cases, the flu goes away on its own. If you have severe symptoms or complications, you may be treated in a hospital.
Eating and drinking
These symptoms may represent a serious problem that is an emergency. Do not wait to see if the symptoms will go away. Get medical help right away. Call your local emergency services (911 in the U.S.). Do not drive yourself to the hospital.
This information is not intended to replace advice given to you by your health care provider. Make sure you discuss any questions you have with your health care provider.
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