Worst, early flu season in a decade
The flu has hit the Tri-Cities early and it may not be easy to avoid this year.
"I've gotten a flu shot and just try to stay healthy. Get a lot of rest," said Betty Eles. "I wash my hands a lot and everything and just try to keep the germs away."
But Marika Graziano, a physician's assistant, said your chances of getting the flu are a lot higher this year. Graziano said doctor's offices are seeing more cases of the flu this year than they did last year. "Almost everybody that's coming in.. We're having to swab and most are coming back positive," said Graziano.
According to the Center for Disease Control, most of the country is experiencing widespread cases of the flu, including Tennessee and Virginia.
"There's not a lot you can do to avoid it with it as heavy as it has hit our area.. But just wash your hands, avoid people who have the flu and get your flu shot," Graziano said.
But Elles said she doesn't get the vaccine because she believes she's better off without it. "A few years ago I used to take it and one time it made me real sick, so I haven't taken it and I've been really healthy," she said.
But doctors said it's not unusual for people who have had the shot to still get the flu. "There have been some people who have had the flu shot who are still coming back positive for flu, so the flu shot isn't protecting everybody 100 percent," said Graziano.
Overall, doctors are seeing primarily Flu A, also known as H1N1, and less cases of Flu B. Both strands of the flu are in this year's vaccine.
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