Dr. Frank Welch knows a thing or two about the flu. He is Louisiana's Department of Health Director.

In my 20 years doing this, I've never seen it this bad.  Typically, when we get up around 4, 5, even 6%, that is a serious, serious flu year.  We're up at 10% now in Louisiana.

This particular strain of the flu is very aggressive. Just ask anyone who has encountered it this flu season. The symptoms come on quickly and then linger like a relative who can't take a hint.

Dr. Welch, in his comments to the Louisiana Radio Network, said the Centers for Disease Control is tracking four different strains of influenza this season. The one that is affecting Louisiana appears to be the nastiest.

This particular one, we refer to it as H3N2, just seems to be a more aggressive form of the flu.  It makes people sicker, it makes their other problems sicker, they're sicker longer.

So, what can you do?

If you're not feeling well consult your doctor. Not all cases of the flu are going to require a doctor visit but they might. Otherwise, get plenty of rest, drink plenty of fluids, and stay away from other people are the best advice we can give.

If you don't have symptoms officials suggest you get a flu shot, it can still help. Also, make sure you're washing your hands often and that you're staying away from sick people.

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