Flu Risk Factors
Some of the groups at greater risk include the following:
- Children younger than 5, but especially children younger than 2 years old
- Adults 65 years of age and older
- Pregnant women (and women up to two weeks postpartum)
- Residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities
- Also, American Indians and Alaskan Natives[729 KB] seem to be at higher risk of flu complications
And people who have medical conditions including the following:
- Neurological and neurodevelopmental conditions [including disorders of the brain, spinal cord, peripheral nerve, and muscle such as cerebral palsy, epilepsy (seizure disorders), stroke, intellectual disability (mental retardation), moderate to severe developmental delay, muscular dystrophy, or spinal cord injury].
- Chronic lung disease (such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease [COPD] and cystic fibrosis)
- Heart disease (such as congenital heart disease, congestive heart failure and coronary artery disease)
- Blood disorders (such as sickle cell disease)
- Endocrine disorders (such as diabetes mellitus)
- Kidney disorders
- Liver disorders
- Metabolic disorders (such as inherited metabolic disorders and mitochondrial disorders)
- Weakened immune system due to disease or medication (such as people with HIV or AIDS, or cancer, or those on chronic steroids)
- People younger than 19 years of age who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy
- People with extreme obesity [Body Mass Index (BMI)] of 40 or more]
It is important to get vaccinated if you care for anyone in these high risk groups, including babies younger than 6 months because they are too young to get vaccinated. Remember, it's not too late to protect yourself and loved ones from the flu by getting vaccinated. The short time it will take to get a flu vaccine is much less than the time it will take you to recover from the flu.
Source: CDC Features1
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Back to: « Flu
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Influenza circulation varies geographically. The risk for exposure to influenza during travel depends on the time of year and destination. In temperate regions, influenza typically circulates at higher levels during colder winter months: October to May in the Northern Hemisphere and April to September in the Southern Hemisphere. In tropical or subtropical regions, although influenza activity may peak during rainy or dry seasons, or even have 2 annual peaks, year-round circulation is commonly observed.
Influenza virus can cause disease in all age groups. Infection rates are typically highest in children, especially in school-aged children. Rates of severe illness and death are typically highest among people aged ?65, children <2 years, and people of any age who have underlying medical conditions that place them at increased risk for complications of influenza. Children aged <2 years have rates of influenza-associated hospitalizations that are as high as those in the elderly, although with much lower death rates. CDC estimates that from 1976 through 2006, annual influenza-associated deaths in the United States ranged from a low of approximately 3,000 people to a high of approximately 49,000 people; approximately 90% of these deaths occurred among people aged ?65 years.
Source: CDC Yellow Book 20162
Risk Factors for Flu
Arthritis: Are people with arthritis more susceptible to complications from the flu?
People with certain forms of arthritis (e.g., rheumatoid arthritis and lupus) may have weakened immune systems, due either to the disease and/or the medications (e.g., prednisone) they take to treat the condition. This may make them more susceptible to flu-related complications after being infected.
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- Source: CDC Features: cdc.gov/ Features/ FluPrevention/ index.html
- Source: CDC Yellow Book 2016: cdc.gov/ travel/ yellowbook/ 2016/ infectious-diseases-related-to-travel/ influenza
- Source: CDC: cdc.gov/ arthritis/ basics/ faqs.htm
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Note: This site is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice. See your doctor or other qualified medical professional for all your medical needs.