Pearl City Urgent Care sees spike in flu cases

By Nana Ohkawa
Published On: Jan 05 2014 05:39:00 PM HST

Doctors at Pearl City Urgent Care were treating two to five flu cases per week in December but since the beginning of the new year cases have spiked to 25 in just a few days.

PEARL CITY, Hawaii -

In December, doctors at Pearl City Urgent Care were getting two to five flu cases each week. Now, since the beginning of the new year, there's already been 25 cases.

Click here to see Nana Ohkawa's report.

"It does peak around this time, January, February, but from what we were seeing to now, that's a pretty big jump," said Dr. Brandon Shirai at Pearl City Urgent Care.

Doctors said the seasonal flu can start in October and stretch until May. Dr. Shirai expects this one to last for a while. He said this seasonal influenza virus is spiking rapidly.

"This is one urgent care. There's many clinics, other urgent cares, so if we are seeing that big spike, I'm assuming that everyone else is seeing a spike as well," said Dr. Shirai.

The flu symptoms come rapidly too. You can be OK in the morning and be bedridden by the afternoon. And the six-month flu vaccination is running low across the state. There's only 20 doses left at the Pearl City Urgent Care.

"As we get older, our immune system goes down that's why we got the flu shot," said Russell Johnson.

For those who haven't been vaccinated, doctors said be on the look out for those who are sick, coughing and sneezing around you, and the key to always wash your hands. Doctors urge you to stay home if you end up getting the flu. You are contagious for seven to 10 days.

"There are fatalities from the flu because you can get a secondary infection like pneumonia that's from the flu itself," said Dr. Shirai.

If you have the flu, he advises that you stay in bed, drink plenty of hot liquids, and take ibuprofen or Tylenol for pain and fever.

If you get help within 48 hours of catching the flu, doctors say they can help decrease the duration and severity of the illness.

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