Flurona Variant: Double Infection Combination of Flu and Covid-19
We're only a few days into 2022, and we've already got a new nightmare to keep us up at night: the flurona variant or florona disease. Just soon after Delmicron (a Delta and Omicron variant COVID-19 combination) debuted in Europe, a new nightmare Covid variant combination called Flurona emerged in Israel. Here is everything you need to know about it!
In this Article:
- What is the Flurona Disease or Florona Variant
- Israel Covid Variant
- Covid and Influenza
- Covid and Flu
- Flurona Complications
- Flurona Prevention
- Flurona Treatment
What is the Flurona or Florona Disease?
Flurona may sound comical, but it is a serious condition. Flurona is a double infection when both the Covid-19 virus and influenza are present in your body. The word “flurona” combines “flu” with “coronavirus,” hence the name of this disease.
Since the pandemic began, public health experts have warned that people could contract COVID-19 and the flu at the same time. With cases increasing across the country following a relatively mild season last year, clinicians are warning of “flurona,” which they say can happen – and Israel just recorded its first documented case, which might be the first in the world.
Israel Covid Variant
The world's first confirmed case of a dual infection combining influenza and coronavirus infections has been identified in a pregnant woman in Israel who was not vaccinated.
The Israeli woman was unaware of having one or more of the viruses when she went into labor late last week. She displayed minor signs and was examined at Beilinson Hospital in Petah Tikva, Israel. Immediately, she was diagnosed with the flu and coronavirus upon her arrival and both tests came back positive.
“The disease is the same disease; they’re viral and cause difficulty breathing since both attack the upper respiratory tract.”
She was discharged in good health but the Health Ministry is looking into the case to see if the combination of infections worsened her illness. Although the case was minor, the Health Ministry is still investigating the co-occurrence of flu and coronavirus, and no conclusion has been reached as to whether a mix of the two viruses causes more severe illness.
The health authorities believe that many other people have both viruses but have not been diagnosed.
The Israel Ministry of Health, who are just beginning their second booster campaign for those with weakened immune systems, has expressed worries of a “twindemic” as the number of influenza cases begins to rise owing to a mismatch in this year's flu vaccine and the ongoing prevalent Influenza A virus.
Last week, a 31-year-old pregnant woman died from influenza complications at nine months of her pregnancy. And on another news, a 6-year-old boy died from myocarditis (a flu complication) in December.
And there have been more cases of influenza in recent weeks according to Israeli doctors.
COVID-19 and Influenza
Do you know that Flurona isn't a new variant?
There were several reports of parallel infections in the United States early in the pandemic when the coronavirus was still unknown, but none have been verified by the World Health Organization.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cases of flu have been steadily increasing in the United States — 4,514 new infections were identified during the week of Dec. 18 — which raises the possibility that flurona will occur in the country.
These co-infections were more prevalent when the pandemic began since the flu was spreading throughout the population. Still, flurona cases aren't common in the United States — yet.
This is highly concerning given that last year's flu season was virtually non-existent and this year's epidemic is underway.
The strength of the infection and how it affects people remains unknown since there isn't much research on this topic. But each of the viruses is potentially deadly and the mix might be quite devastating.
COVID-19 and Flu
The viruses that cause Covid-19 and the flu spread in similar ways.
Both viruses can spread between individuals who are in close contact (less than six feet, or two meters apart).
The viruses are spread via respiratory droplets or aerosols produced by speaking, sneezing, or coughing. These particles can fall into the mouth or nose of someone nearby or be breathed in.
If a person touches a contaminated surface with one of the viruses on it and then touches his or her mouth, nose, or eyes, these viruses may spread.
Because the viruses can spread more rapidly, there is a greater chance of “severity.” Both viruses can cause havoc in the body, which can lead to additional illnesses.
Flurona Complications | COVID-19 and Flu Complications
The viruses that cause the flulike symptoms of the flu and COVID-19 generally do not “compete” with one another to protect you from each other. They target different receptors in your body. As a result, when you have flurona, you can get both the full flu and COVID-19 sickness at once.
Getting Covid-19 and the flu simultaneously might result in serious complications like pneumonia, acute respiratory distress syndrome, organ failure, heart attacks, heart or brain inflammation, stroke, and even death.
Flurona Symptoms | What Are the Symptoms of Flurona?
Flurona will not produce any new symptoms that you would not get with another condition. As a result, you might experience all of the symptoms of either sickness at once.
For the COVID-19 aspect of the disease, you might experience any of the following:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- New loss of taste or smell
- Sore throat
- Congestion or runny nose
- Nausea or vomiting
*Note: These symptoms also include omicron variant symptoms. Source: CDC
For the flu part of Flurona, CDC says you could have any of the following symptoms:
- Fever or feeling feverish
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Muscle or body aches
- Vomiting and diarrhea (this is more common in children than adults)
Symptoms of the flu usually begin three to four days after infection and last between one to two weeks, whereas coronavirus symptoms emerge between two and 14 days.
Both viral and non-viral infections can cause a cough, yet they have distinct symptoms, and testing them is necessary to detect the distinction.
Cough and fever are the main symptoms of both, but there's one important distinction to consider when samples are delivered for testing. Differences are only discovered when the sample is tested, despite both having a cough and a fever.
The PCR test is used to detect RNA (or Ribonucleic acid, which is required for all forms of life) from a virus. On viruses, several PCR tests are utilized. Both viruses have distinct genotypes which may be identified only through lab tests.
World Health Organization (WHO) says that it is possible to catch both diseases at the same time.
The most effective way to prevent hospitalization and severe COVID-19 and influenza is vaccination with both vaccines. The best strategy to prevent both influenza and severe Covid-19 is to get both Influenza and Covid vaccines.
WHO also advises continuing to follow prevention measures, such as:
- Maintaining at least a 1-meter distance from others
- Wearing a well-fitted mask when keeping your distance is not possible
- Avoiding crowded and poorly ventilated places and settings
- Opening windows and doors to keep rooms well ventilated and
- Cleaning your hands frequently.
Flurona Treatment | How to Treat Flurona
Flurona has no known treatment. The treatment is for individual viruses.
- If you have symptoms after being exposed to an infection, you might be offered oseltamivir (Tamiflu) if it has been more than 48 hours since your illness began.
- If you qualify for Pfizer's Paxlovid and Merck's molnupiravir antiviral COVID-19 pills, your doctor may prescribe them or another COVID-19 treatment like monoclonal antibodies or remdesivir.
It's difficult to determine if you have flurona on your own. It might be difficult for your doctor to tell without testing you for both conditions. If you have symptoms of COVID-19 or the flu and are unsure which one it is, it's critical to get tested and receive the appropriate treatment.
Watch this video of TRT World to learn more about Flurona:
What do you think about Flurona? Please let us know in the comment section below.
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