What could be worse than catching the Flu? How about catching it twice in the same season?
Many are focusing on not battling it a first time, but it is possible to contract it a second time as a WZDX employee found out.
When a person is battling the Flu it’s not like dealing with certain viral infections where you catch it once and you are immune.
That’s not the case with Influenza.
Infectious-Disease Specialist with Huntsville Hospital, Dr. Ali Hassoun said, “Definitely there is a chance in the same season you can get two episodes of infection depending on what type of strain you get exposed.”
A double dose is possible because of the multiple strains of Flu.
In the first bout you could battle Influenza A, which is the typical H3N2 strain.
Dr. Hassoun said, “In common, if you get exposed and you get one time infection you will have some immunity.”
That immunity does not guarantee protection against another strain, like Influenza B.
Even in the A strain there a several different subspecies.
“Depending on the year it was found, depending on what type, where it came from, which region, was it from certain animal,” said Dr. Hassoun.
Catching the flu twice in a season is not common and safety and prevention are still key.
It is still very important to make sure you follow common advice. Make sure you keep your hands clean and keeping all surfaces around you clean.
“Keep in mind, the idea is not necessarily that you prevent the infection, but you will reduce the severity of infection,” said Hassoun.
Reports show the vaccination has not been as effective this season with a rate less than 50%.
Physicians do still say getting vaccinated is significant.
Flu activity is widespread across the continental U.S. with Hawaii being the only location with minimal impact.
According to the Alabama Department of Health, This Flu season is still very active.
There hasn’t been an increase in cases, but there are no reported declines.
The Flu hasn’t been this prevalent in the U.S. since the 2009 H1N1 outbreak.
Click here for more information on Flu prevention.