H3N2 influenza, a subtype of influenza A virus, has so far caused about 90 cases and 2 deaths in India. The disease is said to cause fever for 3-5 days and prolonged cough and cold for three weeks. The H3N2 influenza subtype causes more hospitalizations than other strains and symptoms include persistent cough, headache, fever and sinus symptoms. While the disease is usually mild in vulnerable groups, it can become severe and put some at risk of complications and even death. If someone has difficulty breathing, low blood pressure, rapid breathing, blue lips, dizziness, confusion, they should be taken to the hospital immediately. (Also Read: H3N2 Influenza vs Covid-19: Symptoms, Incubation Period, Severity & More)
“Influenza H3N2 is a subtype of influenza A virus that can cause respiratory illness in humans. Signs and symptoms of severe illness from H3N2 influenza can vary from person to person, but generally the following symptoms may indicate a more serious illness,” Dr Jayalakshmi TK, Consultant, Pulmonology, Apollo Hospital, Navi Mumbai says.
Severe symptoms of H3N2 influenza
Dr. Jayalakshmi lists the following symptoms of severe illness in H3N2 influenza patients:
1. Shortness of breath or shortness of breath May indicate the onset of pneumonia or other respiratory complications.
2. Severe or persistent vomiting: Severe or persistent vomiting may be a symptom of severe H3N2 influenza. This can lead to dehydration.
3. Dehydration: Dehydration can occur if a person with H3N2 influenza is not drinking enough fluids or is experiencing severe vomiting or diarrhea.
4. Low blood pressure: People with severe H3N2 influenza may have low blood pressure if they have dehydration or sepsis.
5. High rate of breathing: A person with severe H3N2 influenza may have a high rate of breathing while experiencing difficulty breathing or low oxygen saturation.
6. Worsening of existing chronic medical conditions: H3N2 influenza can worsen existing chronic medical conditions such as asthma or diabetes.
7. Blue lips or face It can be a sign of low oxygen in the blood, which can accompany a serious respiratory infection such as pneumonia, which can be a complication of influenza.
8. Seizures or convulsions May occur as a result of fever or swelling in the brain, which can occur in severe cases of influenza or other viral infections.
9. Confusion or confusion May occur as a result of fever or swelling in the brain, which can occur in severe cases of influenza or other viral infections.
10. High fever that lasts for more than three days This is a common symptom of H3N2 influenza, as well as other types of influenza, and may be a sign of a more serious illness.
11. Excessive fatigue or weakness Another common symptom of H3N2 influenza is that the body is using too much energy to fight the virus.
12. Chest pain or pressure is a viral respiratory disease that primarily affects the upper respiratory system.
13. Low oxygen saturation (hypoxemia) H3N2 influenza can occur in people infected with the virus, especially in severe cases of the disease. The H3N2 influenza virus can cause respiratory symptoms such as cough, shortness of breath, and chest tightness, which can lead to a decrease in oxygen saturation levels.
Common symptoms of H3N2 influenza
Dr. Shalmali Inamdar, Consultant, Physician and Adult Infectious Diseases, Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital Mumbai talks about common symptoms of H3N2 influenza.
• High fever: A sudden high fever is one of the most common symptoms of H3N2 infection. Fever can range from 100 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit and last for 3 to 4 days.
• Cough: A dry, persistent cough is another common symptom of H3N2 infection. The cough can be severe and last for several weeks.
• Sore throat: A sore throat is also a common symptom of H3N2 infection. It may be accompanied by other symptoms such as fever and cough.
Headache: Headaches are common in people with H3N2 influenza. They can be severe and persistent.
Fatigue: Fatigue and weakness are common symptoms of H3N2 infection. They may persist for several weeks even after other symptoms have gone away.
• Body aches: Body aches, especially in the back, arms, and legs, are common in people with H3N2 influenza. They can be severe and persistent.
• Cold: Cold is a common symptom of H3N2 infection. They may be accompanied by fever and body aches.
“If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s important to seek medical attention right away. Your doctor can prescribe antiviral medications to help relieve symptoms and prevent complications. Healthy lifestyle choices can reduce your risk of H3N2 influenza, along with a strong primary care system. Access to a full-time model for doctors can remove barriers to treatment,” says Dr Inamdar.
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