Articles on Flu

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The flu comes on rapidly and symptoms get worse over the first few days. Shutterstock

We can’t predict how bad this year’s flu season will be but here’s what we know so far

The 2018 flu season was mild, while 2017 was a particularly bad year. It's impossible to predict what the 2019 flu season has in store, but we've seen more cases so far this year than usual.
What goes up must come down, and that includes the protection the flu vaccine offers against influenza. Irina Bg/Shutterstock

When’s the best time to get your flu shot?

Protection wanes after four or five months, so for most people, it makes sense to get a flu shot in mid to late May or early June so you're protected when the flu season peaks in August or September.
Californians in June 2015 protest a bill that did away with personal belief exemptions for vaccinating children before they enter school. Rich Pedroncelli/AP Photo

Countering misinformation about flu vaccine is harder than it seems

Vaccination rates for children in some parts of California are down, despite a law that narrowed exemptions. Here's a look at why people refuse to listen to evidence when it comes to the flu vaccine.
An Atlanta hospital set up a mobile ER to deal with the large number of flu cases. AP Photo/David Goldman

Why did the flu kill 80,000 Americans last year?

Part of the problem was a mismatch between the influenza strains circulating and the vaccine available. Here's how annual flu shots are formulated.
Could the yearly flu shot become a thing of the past? AP Photo/Darron Cummings, File

Influenza: The search for a universal vaccine

Flu virus mutates so quickly that one year's vaccine won't work on the next year's common strains. But rational design – a new way to create vaccines – might pave the way for more lasting solutions.
Once a respiratory virus like influenza has entered your home or workplace, it is wise to treat the space like a hospital and practice infection prevention and control. (Shutterstock)

How to eradicate the flu virus from your home

From face-touching to virus-contaminated electronic devices, a scientist offers some tips on eradicating the flu virus from your home.

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