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Anti-Viral Treatments Help in Flu Cases

Anti-Viral Treatments Help in Flu Cases



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Shelley Osterloh ReportingThe U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the flu season could continue for several more months. Adults may be able to infect others one day before getting symptoms and up to seven days after getting sick. So it is possible to give someone the flu before you know you're sick.

As we do battle with the flu, we are all looking for that silver bullet that will ease the symptoms. Doctor Osman Sanyer of the University of Utah says there is at least one type of anti viral drug that is being promoted to do just that.

Osman Sanyer, M.D., Univ. of Utah Family Medicine Clinic: "It may appear to reduce the length of symptoms by about 24-hours. Now some people may say look, if I'm going to be sick for 12 days and I spend 80-bucks and I'm only going to be sick for 11, that doesn't matter to me. Other people may say that's worth it to me, I'll spend 80 bucks to have a day where I don't feel sick."

Even if you don't get a flu shot, there are anti-viral drugs that can keep you from getting sick if you need to be in close proximity to some whose been diagnosed with the flu. But Dr. Sanyer says, while effective, it’s not the best way to treat say, an extended family of 15 at 75-dollars each.

Osman Sanyer, M.D. "So it means to eliminate one case of flu you'd spend at least one-thousand-dollars in treating people. Is that worth it? Possibly,if that one case of influenza happened to be in a 65-year old who's going to get pneumonia and get hospitalized it's one-thousand dollars well spent."

There are four antiviral drugs that are approved for treatment of the flu. Antiviral treatment lasts for five days and must be started within two days of illness. So if you get flu-like symptoms, seek medical care early on.

For more information on the symptoms and treatment of flu, follow the link at the top of this story.

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