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Diabetes and Flu: A Scary Combination

December 20, 2011

It’s that time of year again where the cold and flu season really starts to get into full swing. Over the past few months, you may have seen ads or asked your doctor if you would like to get a flu shot all in preparation for flu season. For patients with diabetes, the flu can be devastating disease. It is for this reason it is recommended that all patients with diabetes mellitus have been vaccinated against influenza in September, long before the flu season begins.

How do I know if I have the flu?

Influenza is a virus, which is characterized by sudden onset of fever, chills, headache, cough and muscle aches. In addition, sometimes accompanied by nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
What if I have the flu?

Most patients recover without any complications, but patients with diabetes have an increased risk of problems such as dehydration, hyperglycemia, pneumonia, and hospitalization. For this reason, diabetic patients is recommended to call your doctor if you have flu symptoms. You can talk to a nurse who can advise you if your symptoms coincide with the flu and how to proceed.

You may need to consult a doctor to start a medication to reduce the risk of complications from influenza. These drugs are most effective when they started within 72 hours after symptom onset. That’s why it’s important for people with diabetes to see a doctor as soon as they suspect they have the flu.

If you have the flu and diabetes, you must perform the following steps to reduce the risk of complications from influenza:

1. Soda: Increase your intake of fluids, taking a small amount of sugar drinks every hour to prevent dehydration. If vomiting or diarrhea, it becomes very important. Monitor for signs of dehydration, which include dry mouth, increased thirst, increased heart rate and decreased urination.

2. Monitor glucose: Hyperglycemia occurs more frequently in patients with diabetes during times of stress and disease. It is recommended that all patients with diabetes check their blood sugar levels every 3-4 hours during the illness to monitor sudden changes in blood sugar levels.

3. Know the symptoms of complications: If you are experiencing shortness of breath, fever, confusion, dehydration, hyperglycemia, or consult your doctor to find out, should be considered first aid.

Influenza a serious disease, and the best way to prevent its complications through annual vaccination.


From → About Diabetes

One Comment
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