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Influenza is a viral infection that attacks your respiratory system — your nose, throat and lungs. Influenza is commonly called the flu.

According to the World Health Organization, There are 4 types of seasonal influenza viruses, types A, B, C and D. Influenza A and B viruses circulate and cause seasonal epidemics of disease.

  • Influenza A viruses are further classified into subtypes according to the combinations of the hemagglutinin (HA) and the neuraminidase (NA), the proteins on the surface of the virus. Currently circulating in humans are subtype A(H1N1) and A(H3N2) influenza viruses. The A(H1N1) is also written as A(H1N1)pdm09 as it caused the pandemic in 2009 and subsequently replaced the seasonal influenza A(H1N1) virus which had circulated prior to 2009. Only influenza type A viruses are known to have caused pandemics.

  • Influenza B viruses are not classified into subtypes, but can be broken down into lineages. Currently circulating influenza type B viruses belong to either B/Yamagata or B/Victoria lineage.

  • Influenza C virus is detected less frequently and usually causes mild infections, thus does not present public health importance.

  • Influenza D viruses primarily affect cattle and are not known to infect or cause illness in people.

The Mayo Clinic says: Most people with the flu get better on their own. But sometimes, influenza and its complications can be deadly. People at higher risk of developing flu complications include:

  • Young children under age 2

  • Adults older than age 65

  • Residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities

  • People who are pregnant or plan to be pregnant during flu season

  • People with weakened immune systems

  • American Indians or Alaska Natives

  • People who have chronic illnesses, such as asthma, heart disease, kidney disease, liver disease and diabetes

  • People with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or higher

Although the annual influenza vaccine isn't 100% effective, it reduces the chances of having severe complications from infection.

According to the CDC: The first and most important step in preventing flu is to get a flu vaccine each year. Flu vaccine has been shown to reduce flu related illnesses and the risk of serious flu complications that can result in hospitalization or even death. CDC also recommends everyday preventive actions (like staying away from people who are sick, covering coughs and sneezes, and frequent handwashing) to help slow the spread of germs that cause respiratory (nose, throat, and lungs) illnesses, like flu.

Each year Campbell County Health strives to educate the community and prevent the spread of Influenza. Here are some great sources to keep you in the know and better your chances of fighting the flu this season.

Flu 411: What you need to know

Body aches, sore throat and runny noses: Is it the flu?

Four Common Back to School Illnesses

Signs of the Stomach Flu or Norovirus

Is it a Cold or the Flu?

Family Medicine providers, also known as primary care providers, care for people of all ages, building long-lasting relationships with you and your family so we can always provide the highest standard of care. Talk to your healthcare provider about getting a flu vaccine as part of your next visit, or come in to get vaccinated. Visit our website at or call us at 307.688.3636

Sources: CDC. (2019, September 13). Key Facts About Influenza (Flu). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Mayo Clinic. (2021, November 1). Influenza (flu) - Symptoms and Causes. Mayo Clinic.

World Health Organization. (2018, November 6). Influenza (Seasonal).; World Health Organization: WHO.

  • Category: Campbell County Medical Group Family Medicine