Acute Illness - Acute Influenza

Flu is an infectious and common viral illness spread by coughs and sneezes.


It's not the same as the common cold. Flu is caused by a different group of viruses. Symptoms tend to be more severe and last longer.

You can catch flu – short for influenza – all year round, but it is especially common in winter, which is why it is also known as "seasonal flu".


Flu causes:

  • A sudden high temperature,
  • Headache and general aches and pains,
  • Tiredness and a sore throat. You can also
  • Loss of appetite,
  • Feelings of nausea,
  • A cough.


Flu symptoms can make you feel so exhausted and unwell that you have to stay in bed and rest until you feel better.


When to see a doctor at Lion Health

If you are otherwise fit and healthy, there is usually no need to see a doctor if you have flu-like symptoms.


The best way to treat it is with supportive therapies from the pharmacy.

  • Paracetamol or ibuprofen to lower a high temperature and relieve aches.
  • Rest and fluids to ensure dehydration does not develop.


You should see a doctor if you have flu-like symptoms and you:

  • Are aged 65 or over
  • Are pregnant
  • Have a long-term medical condition such as diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, kidney disease or a neurological disease
  • Have a weakened immune system


Antibiotics are of no use in the treatment of flu because it is caused by a virus and not by bacteria.


Flu symptoms usually last for up to 1 week and you are contagious for 1 day prior to symptom development and for a further 5-6 days.