H1N1 Influenza Virus

By Clayton Chan, MD and Ben Lui, MD, MPH

For your convenience, the following information has also been provided in Khmer, Chinese, Vietnamese, and Korean.

H1N1 Primer (Chinese)

H1N1 Primer (English)

What should I do if I get sick from H1N1?

If you have a mild case, with symptoms like other colds you have had in the past, then stay home until you have not had a fever for more than 24 hours without the use of medications.

How do I know if I need urgent medical care?

Signs of serious illness include:

1. Fast breathing or trouble breathing

2. Symptoms that go away and return with worse fever and cough

3. Bluish or gray skin color in children

If you have these symptoms, call 911 or go to the Emergency room.

Do I need medications?

Most cases of H1N1 get better just by your own body's immune system and do not require treatment. If you are having symptoms that are more severe than the usual cold or flu, then a medical provider can determine if you need medication.

What is the H1N1 influenza virus?

H1N1 or "Swine Flu" is one type of flu virus. Right now, it is the most common flu in the US.

What are the symptoms of H1N1?

Usually fever greater than 100F and cough. Other symptoms can include runny nose, sore throat, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea.

Who should get the H1N1 vaccine?

Ideally everyone should get the vaccine. When vaccine supply is limited, people at high risk of complications from H1N1 should get the vaccine.

The high risk groups include:

- Pregnant women

- Children ages 6 months to 4 years old

- Children 5 years to 18 years old with medical conditions that put them at increased risk for complications of flu (asthma, diabetes, etc.).

- Persons who live with or provide care for infants under 6 months old

- Health care personnel

How can you prevent the flu?

Wash your hands with soap and water or alcohol based hand sanitizers frequently. Cover your mouth when you cough. Avoid sick people.