Is it possible to be infected with influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2 at the same time?

Is it possible to be infected with influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2 at the same time? What is known about the phenomenon called flurona?

Is it possible to contract the flu and COVID-19 at the same time? As early as Autumn, experts warned that it was possible to contract the influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2 at the same time. Nevertheless, it seemed unrealistic to most.

Today it is already known that the phenomenon called flurona is indeed possible. What are the symptoms of the co-infection of two viruses, and what can be the consequences of a double infection? How to defend against flurona?

Flurona – influenza

Flurona (flu – influenza and corona – coronavirus) also known as fluporona is a combination of infection with influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2 virus, or coronavirus. The first cases of dual infection were reported as early as spring 2020 in the US, and most likely have been occurring since the beginning of the pandemic in various locations. Why hasn’t the possibility of the two viruses co-infecting each other been talked about loudly until now? Because once a test was done for COVID-19, no additional testing was usually done. In some laboratories, the sample taken from the patient was immediately tested for the presence of several different viruses, hence, as it were, double or even triple infections were found out by accident. It is worth being aware that such co-infections in virology are not unusual. They have happened before with various types of infectious diseases.

According to information gathered so far, the number of cases of flurona worldwide remains low. More cases have recently been detected in China, Iran, Israel, Spain and Hungary. Most of those who are ill do not require additional medical interventions, but it is important to remember that simultaneous infection with two viruses is more dangerous to the body than a single infection.

Symptoms of flurona

The problem with distinguishing the two diseases – influenza and coronavirus – is that they are very similar. They attack the upper respiratory tract, affect breathing problems, cause fever, shortness of breath, cough, fatigue, muscle aches, runny nose, sore throat, etc. The combination, or flurona (influenza), additionally causes diarrhea and hemoptysis, but this is not the rule. So how do you diagnose the individual diseases or a combination of them?

Diagnosis of dual infection

The only way to 100% confirm exactly what a patient is ill with is to perform diagnostic tests. Based on their results, it can be determined whether he has symptoms of influenza or coronavirus, or whether there are two infections going on in his body at the same time. Why should such tests be performed on all patients with the symptoms described? Because depending on the result, quarantine can be ordered and the risk of transmitting the coronavirus to more people can be reduced. In addition, it is important to remember that COVID-19, unlike influenza, does not always produce symptoms. Sometimes it turns out that the flu masks the coronavirus, so to speak, causing the patient to unknowingly expose people around him to the disease.

What are the risks of influenza (flurona)?

Infection with two different pathogens at the same time significantly increases the risk of serious illness and death. The immune system, which has to fight a double enemy, is overloaded, so it reacts more slowly and less effectively – it does not have the strength to defend the body efficiently. An even bigger problem arises when the infection affects patients with immune disorders – congenital or acquired, and chronic cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases. These ones should especially protect themselves against flurona.

Both coronavirus and influenza virus damage the lungs. As a result, their coexistence can cause pneumonia, the appearance of fluid in the lungs, affect the formation of respiratory failure and eventually inflammation of the heart, brain, muscle tissue and sepsis. And we are only talking about immediate complications. At this point, it is unknown what the long-term effects of flurona will be.

How to protect yourself from flurona?

Let’s return to the question of protection. What can you do to minimize the risk of contracting the disease? In addition to following the recommendations related to avoiding large concentrations of people, disinfection and wearing protective masks, get vaccinated not only against COVID-19, but also against influenza.

Vaccines are at all times the most effective way to protect against these diseases.


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