After nearly vanishing for the season, the flu has made a comeback. Influenza has peaked again for the second time in Onondaga County. Since February 23rd, confirmed cases of the flu have tripled in the past month.
Pamela McLaughlin never had the flu and she didn't know how it felt until she caught it during the first increase in December. "I've never actually been sick like that before. I've never had much other than head colds, but it was horrible," says McLaughlin. "I will never not get get a flu shot again. Even though the strain of flu that I had wasn't well covered by the shot that was around, I will never not get one again."
Rebecca Shultz is the Director of Surveillance and Statistics for the Onondaga County Health Department. While looking over the data from past years, she noticed how this second spike is not common. "what was interesting about that is the peak cases in December were primarily Influenza A virus and the up tick we're seeing right now is due primarily to Influenza B virus. So it's a different type of virus that's causing the current cases," says Shultz. "They are transmitted the same way, the symptoms are the same and the methods of prevention are the same too."
The Health Department says the same methods should be used to prevent the flu. Washing your hands thoroughly, coughing into your arm and if you havenâ??t received your flu shot, it still is not too late.