Flu Hits Green Country

Monday, March 9th 2009, 5:05 pm
By: News On 6

Margaret Stokes & Chris Howell NewsOn6.com

TULSA, OK -- As of February 28th, there have been 22 pediatric deaths nationwide due to flu-related illnesses according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Although late this year, it seems the flu has finally hit Green Country with a vengeance.  Luckily no cases in our area have been fatal so far.  But doctors warn the bug is widespread, and for those who catch it it's just plain miserable.

Doctors say in Tulsa flu season usually hits around November and October but this year it's showed up late.  In fact, the flu didn't impact green country until the end of February.

Doctor Stacy O'Sullivan works at the Tulsa Pediatric Urgent Care.  She says the flu never discriminates.  At any age you are susceptible.  The most dangerous cases usually involve patients who are either very old or very young because their bodies are not able to fight the sickness as well as others.

In our area there are two strains that are resistant to two different types of flu vaccines.

There is a new vaccine that works with no resistance, but it can't be used on children under seven.  Unfortunately, if you haven't had your flu shot yet it's a little late.  But if you catch the symptoms in the first 48 hours you can get vaccinated and it may hasten your recovery.

Doctor O'Sullivan says if you don't catch the signs within the first 48 hours, practice some TLC.

"What we always tell parents is just supportive care.  Lots of chicken soup, lots of fluids, and lots of Tylenol and Motrin," said Doctor O' Sullivan.