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Flu or Something Worse?

written by Guest Blogger June 14, 2016

Regular contributor, Brooke Chaplan, is here today with a list of flu-like symptoms that can actually turn out to be something more severe. Please keep reading so next time you or a loved one are feeling under the weather, you’ll be more aware and head to the hospital, if necessary. 

The common flu has a number of symptoms associated with it. These can include body aches, chills, a dry cough, fever, malaise, a lack of energy, generalized pain, and more. While these symptoms are usually due to the flu, they can also be indicative of a more dangerous condition. That’s why learning when to watch for certain symptoms may prove extremely beneficial to your health. Below explores some symptoms that may appear like the flu, but are potentially more serious.

Hepatitis A: Flu-Like Symptoms with Dark Urine, Joint Pain, and Jaundice

Hepatitis A is considered a relative to hepatitis B and C. While technically considered a sexually transmitted disease, it is generally transmitted by coming in contact with an infected person’s feces. The symptoms of hepatitis A are similar to the flu with a few marked differences. Patients will often experience pain in their joints, dark urine, and jaundice.

Food Poisoning Symptoms

Food poisoning may stem from any number of contaminants present in food. These may be bacterial, chemical, organic, or viral. The interesting part is that it often produces symptoms similar to the common flu. You may feel nauseous, experience diarrhea, develop a fever, and experience vomiting. While mild cases of food poisoning tend to go away within 12 hours to 2 days, some cases may be more serious. If you experience high levels of pain, then consider seeking a doctor’s help.

Tuberculosis: Chills, Fatigue, Fever, and a Loss of Appetite

Tuberculosis is one of the most dangerous diseases. It can lay dormant for years without causing a problem in an infected individual. When tuberculosis advances, it will begin to create flu-like symptoms. These symptoms will peak as something far worse than any flu could create, and they will become increasingly worse as the tuberculosis infection spreads.

Meningitis: Flu-Like Symptoms with Serious Symptoms Later

Meningitis is defined as a bacterial, fungal, or viral infection that travels to the membranes in the spinal column and the brain. Given its nature, it can result in irreversible damage to the brain and tends to be fatal in the latest stages. This kind of infection looks benign, but it can be very serious. Getting a master’s of nursing online or even a local program or classes will generally include education that helps students recognize the symptoms of meningitis. Early-stage infections often have a good prognosis, but meningitis infections in later stages are generally fatal.

Flu-Like Symptoms May Be More than a Flu

If your flu-like symptoms feel like they’re worse than they should be, then don’t risk it. With diseases like tuberculosis and meningitis presenting similar symptoms, you should always seek a doctor’s professional diagnosis to safeguard your health.

Most diseases that cause flu-like symptoms are often treatable in the early stages, but ignoring these symptoms can lead to the progression of these diseases. Once they progress far enough, they may have a poor prognosis with even the best treatments.

About the Author

Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer and blogger. She lives and works out of her home in Los Lunas, New Mexico. She loves the outdoors and spends most her time hiking, biking and gardening. For more information contact Brooke via Twitter @BrookeChaplan.

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