The flu virus can trigger a heart attack.
Flu doesn’t just make you feel bad. It may also increase the risk of heart attacks, a study published on Wednesday found.
“We found that, compared with a year after the infection before or infection, within one week after being diagnosed flu happen to six times higher risk of heart attack,” the study authors, an epidemiologist and family doctor Jeff said Dr Kwong. Institute of clinical assessment science and public health, Ontario, Canada.
The results appear in this week’s New England journal of medicine.
Doctors have long noted a link between seasonal influenza and cardiovascular death, but the association is difficult to determine. Part of the challenge is that many people with flu-like symptoms have not been tested for the virus. So Kwong and his colleagues decided to use test results (from flu tests and other viruses) and match them with hospital records.
“This is the first time we have a laboratory confirmed influenza, so we are convinced that these are infections caused by influenza [virus],” kwong said.
There are many things that happen during the flu that can help explain the increased risk of heart attack.
“Inflammation is developing and your body is under a lot of stress,” Kwong explains. Oxygen levels and blood pressure may decline. These changes “may lead to increased risk of thrombosis in the heart vessels.”
In his study, people who had a heart attack during the flu were elderly. “Most of them are over 65 years old, and many of them are at risk for heart disease, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes,” said Kwong.
Influenza vaccines do not always protect against influenza viruses. Over the years, this camera has provided more protection than others. Only about 30% of the study population was vaccinated during that season. But flu stalkers say some protection against the virus is better than unprotected.
“If we can reduce the risk of influenza infection, we should reduce the risk of heart attack,” kwong said. So “getting a flu shot is a good idea.”
Infectious disease experts at the centers for disease control and prevention say it’s not too late to get a flu shot this season. There is a lot of flu in the United States, and hospitalization rates are still rising. So the storm is not over.
“There may be another wave,” said Dr. Alicia Fry of the CDC’s flu division. She said the department saw the outbreak of type B flu in some nursing homes. This is different from the main story so far this year.
“It’s really important to stay at home,” flay advised people who feel uncomfortable with flu-like symptoms. She says don’t work – or send your child to school if they get sick.
As the new study shows, the risk of infecting colleagues or classmates may outweigh the risk of upsetting them.