Hives. A flu warning sign?

Updated: Nov 23

Influenza symptoms vary from mild to severe, and can include: fever, headache, muscle pain, runny nose, sore throat, extreme fatigue, and a cough. But a hive as well?


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A few years ago, a distressed Nebraskan woman alarmed the public on Facebook about her son's unusual sign of flu:


According to Ms. Brodi: PLEASE READ AND SHARE: My son came home from school with hives. Every time he would scratch, more would appear. We tried changing his clothes and giving him a bath, but nothing helped. I called his pediatrician. They said they had two kids come into the office that day with the same symptoms and tested POSITIVE FOR INFLUENZA. I took him to the doctor this morning, and he tested POSITIVE for INFLUENZA B. He has had NO symptoms. No fever, no cough, and no runny nose. He only has hives. Please keep watch on your children so if they develop hives, please call your pediatrician. I have never heard of this symptom but it is obviously something to be on the lookout for.

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But while hives by themselves aren't always a tip to be on the alert for, a rash combined with a fever is an emergency flu warning sign for kids.


Additionally, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea in children is possible. Even though infections caused by other viruses may present with comparable symptoms, those brought on by the influenza virus typically worsen and have a higher risk of consequences.


After a person is first exposed to the influenza virus, symptoms might start anywhere between 1 and 4 days, on average 2 days later. The typical duration of fever and associated symptoms is 7 to 10 days, but the cough and weakness may persist for 1 to 2 weeks longer.


Sources: facebook.com, cdc.gov

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