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WRGT-TV FOX 45 News :: News - Good Morning - Keeping Everyone Healthy This Winter

Keeping Everyone Healthy This Winter

Measles 2015 Activity Q&A
Are we seeing a resurgence of the measles?
Yes, we are on pace for one of the worst years in a long time.  So far this year, there have been more than 70 cases of the measles in the United States and that number is growing. Most are linked to cases that are believed to have spread among those visiting Disneyland in California. Last year, there were more than 640 cases in the U.S. 

Why is this happening?
In general, we have more and more children, and even adults, who are not vaccinated against the measles and other diseases. This is because either they have come to the U.S. from a foreign country where vaccination standards are not the same as ours, or, for religious or personal reasons, that have elected not to be vaccinated. This puts them and others at risk.

If you’ve had the measles vaccine previously, are you protected?
The vaccine offers widespread protection, but it’s not 100 percent. It’s rare, but you can still get the measles from someone else if you’ve been vaccinated. Immunity can wane. Prior to 1989, individuals only received one dose of the vaccination. Today, children are vaccinated with two doses.  So many Americans do not meet current vaccination standards.

Should I be re-vaccinated?
A second shot or booster is something to consider, especially if you were originally vaccinated prior to 1989 and likely only had one dose. And if you’re commonly around populations that may not be vaccinated for measles and other diseases, I’d strongly consider it. We offer measles vaccinations at CVS MinuteClinic seven days a week.

How are measles detected?
It starts as an upper respiratory infection: high fever, cough, runny nose and watery eyes. After two to three days tiny white spots appear in the mouth. And the telltale rash of red spots appears after five days on the face, neck and torso. It is infectious and you can transmit measles up to four days before and four days after the rash occurs.

Can measles be deadly?
It’s rare here in the United States, but it can happen; especially among infants and young children. In other parts of the world, deaths are much more common. Measles, however, can lead to other complications like pneumonia, deafness and brain damage.

How is it treated?
There is no anti-viral treatment, so care is supportive only.  Patients who are sick and have the rash should remain isolated at home. And if fever spikes or other complications occur, especially among children, you should get to the ER as soon as possible.

2015 Flu Activity Q&A

Can you give us a current update on the flu? How bad is it here in Ohio and elsewhere?
We are in the middle of a flu season that is more severe than most years. According to the CDC, 47 states are now reporting widespread flu activity, including Ohio. And we are testing and treating a lot of flu patients at the 5 clinics inside CVS/pharmacy stores in the Dayton area.

What’s causing this year to be so bad?
Every flu season is different, and flu strains vary each year. The dominant flu strain - Influenza A or (H3N2) - is being seen in about 90 percent of patients with the flu this year. The CDC has found that this year's flu vaccine is not well matched for he predominant strain in many cases and that’s contributing to the widespread activity.

If you haven’t received a flu shot, should you still get one?
Yes, it’s still very important. The flu vaccine continues to be the single most effective way to protect against the flu. And given the widespread flu activity; it's more important than ever to have yourself and family members vaccinated. It still offers protection and, even if you get the flu, it may help lessen the severity of your illness. We continue to have a full supply of flu vaccine at MinuteClinic.

How do you tell the difference between the flu and a common cold.
A cold comes on slowly, but the flu will hit you very quickly. Symptoms will include muscle aches and a high temperature – rarely do you get those symptoms with colds.

What should you do if you are experiencing these symptoms?
I recommend that you see your physician or you can come to MinuteClinic. We can test for the flu and if you are within 48 hours of being symptomatic, we can prescribe an anti-viral like Tamaflu or Relenza. These drugs lessen the impact and duration of the illness. It’s very important for those who are more vulnerable like young children, seniors and those with chronic diseases. It might be the difference in keeping you out of the hospital. And unfortunately, the flu can even be deadly for some.Keeping Everyone Healthy This Winter

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