SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – The Flu season is fast approaching beginning at the end of the month and a Shreveport doctor wants you to know the difference between the flu and COVID-19.
“I think it’s more important this year to get the flu shot than it has been,” said Dr. Steven R. Bailey, Professor, and Chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine at LSU Health Shreveport. He says there is no evidence linking the flu shot with COVID-19.
“Remember that it’s out there and people can be at risk for that, much longer than what we consider a standard flu season.”
The yearly flu season begins at the end of month, but most cases occur during November.
“We had some people late last year that were still getting their influenza shots. We don’t see any evidence that they were more likely to get COVID or more likely to have severe COVID if they got it.”
Dr. Bailey wants people to know the flu and COVID-19 affect the same area of the body, the lungs. And if you have a chronic disease, you should focus on getting that under control.
“The higher risk you are for being ill from influenza means your also at higher risk from being ill from COVID.”
But when it comes to the symptoms it’s to hard tell the difference. So if you experience any symptoms get checked early.
“If it’s COVID or influenza you may have a fever, typically going to be low grade not really high, you’re likely to have a cough or some shortness of breath, some muscle aches and stomach aches you may have little diarrhea and those don’t differentiate.”
Dr. Bailey says we have to remember to keep up with our proper hygiene and social distancing.
“The thing’s that we can do wearing a mask, getting the flu shot to keep us from getting influenza, will also keep us from being more ill if we also get another infection like COVID.”