Fall is officially here, and flu season
is in full effect. You may already know that getting your flu shot is important, but did you know it can be a matter of life and death for those living with heart disease?
Death from influenza is more common among people with heart disease than any other chronic condition. This alarming statistic calls attention to the key role annual flu shots play in preventing thousands of flu-related complications and deaths each year.
Heart Disease & Flu: Risks,
Symptoms & Prevention
Everyone is susceptible to catching the flu bug, but for certain groups of people the risk is higher. Among these high-risk groups are young children, seniors, pregnant women and people living with health conditions like asthma, diabetes and heart disease.
Having heart disease at any age makes it more difficult to fight off influenza viruses. In addition to causing added stress to the body, contracting the flu on top of heart disease increases the risk of developing pneumonia, respiratory failure, heart attack and death.
Call your Primary Care Provider immediately if you have heart disease and begin to experience flu-like symptoms, including:
- High fever and chills
- Unusual fatigue and overall weakness
- Severe joint and muscle aches and pains
- Persistent headaches
- Respiratory congestion
- Dry cough and sore throat
Avoiding complications related to the flu starts with prevention. The single best method for preventing the potentially damaging effects that the flu can have on those living with heart disease is to get your annual flu shot.
Schedule your appointment with UnityPoint Health – Des Moines to receive your flu shot today, because flu prevention can make a world of difference in living a heart-healthy life this flu season and beyond!