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December 10, 2012

If you get the flu

Staying at home and avoiding contact with other people is the best thing people with standard influenza symptoms can do, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Those people can take decongestants and other over-the-counter mediations to address specific symptoms.

People whose symptoms are acute should contact a healthcare provider, such as a doctor or physician’s assistant.

People who are at greater risk of serious flu-related complications – including young children, the elderly, pregnant women and people with certain high-risk medical conditions – should contact their doctors.

Healthcare providers determine whether an influenza test should be administered and whether treatment is needed.

In some cases, a doctor may prescribe antiviral drugs, but they are most effective when given within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms.

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