Influenza is caused by virus infection of which there are several different strains. It spreads by droplet infection. Influenza is a highly infectious disease. In localized outbreaks influenza/flu is fairly mild but it may take serious dimensions as it did in 1918 when in a worldwide spread, millions died of this disease.

Symptoms & Signs

1. The onset is usually sudden, with symptoms similar to those of common cold or an acute bronchitis.

2. Headache, chills and lethargy.


3. Cough, sneezing, running eyes and nose.

4. Laryngitis.

5. Nausea, vomiting and abdominal pains.



Bronchopneumonia is the most important complication of influenza.


1. Proper nursing care as in any case of fever; patients are best nursed in bed. Due to its rapidity in spread, isolation is generally not feasible.

2. No specific treatment, Aspirin or codeine are useful for headache. Penicillin or other antibiotics are effective in secondary infections.


3. There is no permanent immunity.