Category: Infections

Mother taking a sick child's temperature

Fever 101

Categories: Children's Health  /  Emergency care  /  Infections  /  News

Fever. It’s often the first thing we check our kids for when they feel sick. But how to treat that fever — and when to worry about it — isn’t always clear. The first thing to know is that a fever isn’t an illness, but rather a symptom. It’s a sign your child’s body is fighting an illness or infection. Fever stimulates the body’s defenses, sending white blood cells and other “fighter” cells to attack and destroy the cause of the infection. A fever is generally considered to be a temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, according to the American …Read More >

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Woman with flu in warm socks surrounded by used tissue, medicines and hot tea

Yes, it’s a wretched, awful, miserable flu season this year

Categories: Emergency care  /  Flu  /  Infections  /  News

If you thought flu season was bad this year, here’s a little confirmation. It’s bad this year. An early season and a troublesome flu strain have sickened a lot of people in our community, and across the country. It’s been setting some records at University Health System, where the virology lab is reporting total weekly numbers of cases approaching the volumes seen during the swine flu pandemic in 2009, with 273 positive cases the week ending Jan. 6. Most of those were University Health System patients, and the numbers are likely deceptively low because when flu is in full swing, …Read More >

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Man and woman sneezing and coughing in winter sweaters while sitting on their couch in their home

Cold, flu or allergies?

Categories: Emergency care  /  Flu  /  Infections  /  News

SOMETHING is making you sick. And unfortunately, this time of year, it could be any number of things. While you may be miserable regardless of the cause, identifying the problem could make a difference as to how to treat it and feel better sooner. Influenza is the most serious of the cold-weather bugs, mainly because its complications put a lot of people in the hospital. And flu season is well underway in San Antonio. Our University Health System labs are seeing a lot of the A/H3N2 strain — which is the predominant strain this year. Although there’s been concern that …Read More >

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A sickly older man leans over a bowl with a towel draped over his head

Flu season is near — and it could be a bad one

Categories: Children's Health  /  Flu  /  Infections  /  News  /  Pregnancy

Flu season is just around the corner, and experts predict it could be a bad one. In the Southern Hemisphere, which has an earlier season, the number of lab-confirmed influenza cases was more than double the previous year. In Australia, the virus hit early and sickened record numbers in some areas. “They’re right to be worried about what happened in the Southern Hemisphere,” said Dr. Jason Bowling, an infectious disease specialist at UT Health San Antonio and Hospital Epidemiologist at University Health System. “We could be seeing a bad flu season here this year. We haven’t had one in a …Read More >

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A doctor gives a shot to a smiling patient at the hospital

Roll up a sleeve. It’s your turn

Categories: Infections  /  News

You’re a good mom or dad. You take the time to be familiar with the schedule of recommended childhood vaccinations, and make sure your kids are up-to-date. And if it slips your mind, there’s usually a reminder waiting when the new school year begins. But what about you? Are YOU up-to-date with your vaccines? Adults need vaccines too — whether it’s a booster dose of tetanus and diphtheria, an annual flu shot or something travel-related. The list for grown-ups isn’t complicated, but it’s something that too many busy people ignore. Take this quiz and learn what you need to know …Read More >

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Up close view of a mosquito biting a man's finger

With mosquitoes buzzing again, it’s time to reach for the repellent

Categories: Children's Health  /  Infections  /  News  /  Pregnancy

You may have noticed the buzz. Mosquito season is back in full swing, and with it the concerns about the threat of Zika infection. Bexar County has recorded one confirmed case of Zika in 2017, adding to the 20 cases it reported last year. All the cases so far are thought to be travel-related, with patients infected in places where the infection is circulating. Unfortunately, one of those places is the Lower Rio Grande Valley, which joined Florida last year as the two U.S. regions with local Zika transmission. Last month, the Texas Department of State Health Services issued new …Read More >

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A young woman holds her face and looks up in sadness

The mumps return

Categories: Children's Health  /  Infections  /  News

Quite a few students returned from spring break with more than sunburns this year. A cluster of 13 mumps cases have been traced to people who traveled to South Padre Island from six different states between March 8 and March 22. And state health officials have alerted doctors to be on the lookout for more. The Texas Department of State Health Services issued an alert Wednesday, saying Texas is experiencing a 20-year high in mumps cases. Beyond South Padre, a number of outbreaks have been reported throughout the state. Texas has seen a total of 221 mumps cases so far …Read More >

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The word antibiotics is typed on a piece of paper surrounded by pills, medicine, and a syringe

Antibiotics 101

Categories: Children's Health  /  Infections  /  News

If you find yourself admitted to a hospital anytime soon, you might find your treatment plan includes a little schooling on the proper use of antibiotics. Antibiotic resistance has become a serious problem in recent years. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 30 percent of antibiotics prescribed in the United States are unnecessary. And that misuse can lead to drug-resistant infections. “It happens because it’s easier to give antibiotics than it is to tell someone who took time off work — or brought in their sick kid — that you’re not going to give then an antibiotic, …Read More >

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A tired and messy old man puts his head in his hand with disappointment

Flu season becoming intense in Bexar County

Categories: Flu  /  Infections  /  News

This year’s flu season seems to be reaching its miserable peak after rising in intensity in recent weeks. University Health System’s lab this week reported 128 cases of A-type influenza strains and another 13 cases of a B-strain flu during the week ending Feb. 11.  That represented a 62 percent increase in A-type flu cases in one week. The San Antonio Metropolitan Health District on Tuesday reported a similar rise at testing sites throughout the county. In an interview with KENS TV last week, Dr. Jason Bowling, an infectious disease specialist with UT Health San Antonio and staff epidemiologist at …Read More >

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A pregnant woman sits on the floor and stares lovingly at a sonogram picture

Advice on Zika protection for moms-to-be

Categories: Children's Health  /  Infections  /  News  /  Pregnancy

The well-publicized risks of Zika infection in pregnancy have been scary. Even scarier is the speed at which the infection has spread across geographic borders, and the fact that the mosquitoes doing the spreading — Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus — are found in in South Texas. For pregnant women worried about which insect repellent will protect them safely, Dr. Patrick Ramsey, a maternal-fetal medicine specialist at UT Medicine San Antonio who practices at University Health System, offers some advice: Stay indoors, get rid of standing water on your property and cover up by wearing light-colored, long-sleeve shirts and long …Read More >

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