Hi, everybody. I’m back with one of these “Quick tips” posts where I answer questions that were sent to me on a recent Healthy Matters radio broadcast. Regular listeners will know that I never can get to all of the questions, particularly those sent by text message, so I will try here to do some brief answers. I’ll keep it to just a few topics, and will do more posts in the near future.
Here are the topics in this post. Click the links to jump right to a specific topic.
Influenza. How long are you contagious? What does it look like on a chest x-ray?
As always, I invite you to listen to the Healthy Matters broadcasts, either live or via podcast. Here are ways to listen:
Live on News Radio 830 WCCO on your AM dial. Sunday mornings, 7:30 Central Time. You’d be surprised how far the WCCO signal reaches from our downtown Minneapolis studios.
Live on WCCO.COM. Sunday mornings, 7:30 Central Time, from anywhere on Earth with Internet
At your convenience, via podcast. Simply click on the “Listen to Podcasts” link right here on MyHealthyMatters.org or go directly to WCCO.COM on the “Audio” link and find Healthy Matters. You can listen directly online or you can download the podcast to your phone, tablet, or computer and listen anytime at your own convenience. Without commercials!
There’s a joke, probably only funny to someone from the great frozen tundra where I live, that goes something like this . . .
Q: How does a person from Minnesota say “Hello”?
A: (sniffles) . . . . “Hello.”
Get it? It does seem like everybody around here has a runny nose and they’re all sneezing and coughing and talking with a scratchy throat. In other words, a typical Minnesota fall. Otherwise known as “cold and flu” season. Not to be confused with “winter” which doesn’t start for another day or two. Also not to be confused with the season of “road construction” which lingers on indefinitely or until the first foot of snow falls . . . .
So in keeping with the season, our Healthy Matters radio broadcast this past week had lots of buzz about colds and flu. Perhaps the most common question I get: How can you tell if it is a cold or the flu?
Glad you asked. Real bread and butter medical stuff.
For starters, I can’t count how many times people insist to me that they have the flu – not a cold – because their symptoms are so much worse than everybody else’s. And the fact is that influenza (the “flu”) causes more severe symptoms than does a cold. But most of us, even those who feel pretty darn crummy, actually have a cold, not the flu.
To listen to the podcast of our most recent “Open Lines” Healthy Matters radio broadcast (without commercials!), click the logo here.
Look for Healthy Matters show #458, October 15, 2017. You can listen while you read this post!
We are observing National Influenza Vaccination Week with what will be my 3rd Twitter chat. What is a Twitter chat, you say? I’m glad you asked. Our Twitter chat is one-hour of LIVE questions and answers about colds, flu, and vaccinations. To join in, simply tweet our team any question or comment you have about influenza and vaccinations via your own Twitter account. Include my handle @DrDavidHilden and include #FluChat in your Tweet. And then look for our response!
I’m not doing this alone! Joining me for #FluChat will be:
Jennifer Heath, DNP, MPH, RN from the Minnesota Department of Health. She’s the supervisor of education and partnerships unit for the MDH immunization program.
Lynn Bahta, RN, PHN. Lynn is the immunization clinical consultant for the Minnesota Department of Health immunization program.
Sam Ives, MD. Sam is a friend and colleague of mine in Internal Medicine at Hennepin County Medical Center. Regular listeners to HealthyMatters on WCCO radio may recognize him as an occasional guest host for me.
The whole shebang is moderated by our partners in health, HealthFair 11.
I hope you’ll join us. It is easy and fun. Yes, fun! I have done two previous Twitter chats (one on Allergies and one on Mammograms) and it is fast-moving and energizing.
So put it on your calendar. What better way to spend your lunch?
It’s #FluChat on Tuesday, December 6, Noon – 1:00 pm.
You’ll find us @DrDavidHilden and use the hashtag #FluChat.