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What are the Most Common Symptoms of Swine Flu in Adults?

The H1N1 virus, known commonly as the swine flu, erupted across the world in 2009 and has since stuck around as a common virus found in humans. The new virus can spread from person to person, but contrary to popular belief, a person does not often get swine flu only by coming in contact with pigs. Most people get swine flu from other people, and the most common symptoms of swine flu in adults mimic the symptoms of seasonal flu; these symptoms will include sore throat and fever, a cough, fatigue, headaches, body aches, and other types of discomfort associated with the flu.

Swine flu in adults and seasonal flu in adults will initially seem like the same illness, and usually only lab tests will reveal if the adult's symptoms are a result of seasonal flu or swine flu. Swine flu in adults will usually manifest itself as a very severe flu. When the pandemic hit in 2009, testing for swine flu was usually only done on patients who exhibited very severe flu symptoms. While swine flu was most commonly found in young people, swine flu in adults did occur among certain populations, particularly in obese adults. Obesity is now considered to be a condition that puts a person at higher risk for contracting the swine flu.

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Conditions such as pregnancy in women, kidney problems, asthma, and other chronic health issues can make a person more susceptible to swine flu in adults, and if one feels flu symptoms — especially people with chronic health issues — treatment should begin immediately. Such treatment will include plenty of rest as well as medication, either over-the-counter or doctor-prescribed. Many over-the-counter medications can offer flu relief, but one should be careful not to take these medications if he or she is not experiencing flu-like symptoms, as this may lead to a resistant strain of the flu. Only once flu-like symptoms have been experienced should one begin taking medications.

Mild flu symptoms generally do not require medical attention, but if the symptoms worsen, one might consider visiting a doctor to be tested for swine flu. Swine flu in adults can cause shortness of breath, dizziness, vomiting, confusion, or even flu symptoms that get better and then get worse again, so if someone experiences any of these symptoms, he or she should visit a doctor immediately. One should keep in mind, however, that even the most accurate tests do not always reveal whether a person has swine flu.

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