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  • Last modified 11 days ago (Dec. 5, 2019)

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Differences between cases of colds and flu

  • Fever is rare with colds. Fevers of 102 to 104 degrees are characteristic of influenza, and usually last three or four days.
  • Headache is rare with colds. It is prominent with influenza.
  • Slight general aches and pains happen with colds. General aches and pains are typical and often severe with influenza.
  • Mild fatigue and weakness occurs with colds. It can last two to three weeks with influenza.
  • Extreme exhaustion never occurs with colds. It appears early and is prominent with influenza.
  • Stuffy nose, sneezing, and sore throat is common with colds. These symptoms occur only sometimes with influenza.
  • Chest discomfort and cough are mild to moderate with colds. They are common and can become severe with influenza.
  • Complications of colds include sinus congestion and earache. Complications of influenza include bronchitis and pneumonia, which can be life-threatening.
  • Treatment of colds provides temporary relief of symptoms. Anti-viral medicines for influenza can be prescribed, but must be given within the first 24 hours to be effective.

Last modified Dec. 5, 2019

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