Diane Fashinpaur, the certified family nurse practitioner who directs UA Student Health Services office, answers your questions below about influenza-like illness and provides resources for information about the flu.
Ask Diane a question and she'll answer those of common interest here.
This symptom comparison should help you:
|Fever?||Rare||Usual, high 100F-102F|
|Body aches/pains?||Mild||Usual, often severe|
|Cough?||Mild to moderate||Common; can be severe|
|Exhaustion?||Never||Usual, at beginning|
|Weakness?||Sometimes||Usual, up to 2-3 weeks|
If you have influenza-like symptoms, first pick up the phone and call your health care provider or UA Student Health Services (330-972-7808, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays) to report the illness. See the column to the right for more information about Student Health Services.
If you are sick with flu-like illness, the CDC recommends that you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone, except to get medical care or other necessities. (Your fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.) Stay away from others as much as possible to keep from making others sick.
Ill students who live on campus are strongly encouraged to go home if possible, seek the help of their health care provider if needed, and return to classes when free of fever as indicated above. Notify your professors of your absence by phone or e-mail before you miss a class, and be prepared to make up any missed work.
If you cannot go home, notify Student Health Services at 330-972-7808.
Take these everyday steps to protect your health:
You can expect to feel awful when you have flu, however, influenza typically is a self-limiting illness. It usually lasts 5 to 7 days. Self-care includes rest, plenty of fluids, over-the-counter medication for fever and body aches and avoiding close proximity to other people to prevent virus spread.
In adults, emergency warning signs that need urgent medical attention include:
In children, emergency warning signs that need urgent medical attention include:
Generally, Tamiflu is prescribed for individuals with flu who are either hospitalized, have a chronic medical condition, or have a suppressed immune system. Tamiflu for influenza is not a cure; it only reduces symptoms and decreases length of recovery time by about 24 hours.
Students with flu-like symptoms should not go to class. They should email their professors to inform them of their illness. To promote student success and to help prevent the spread of the virus, the University has asked that faculty announce their expectations for students who report off ill. Such expectations could require absent students to:
The best defense against all flu viruses continues to be good hygiene practices including frequent hand washing, cleaning of hard surfaces more often than usual, sneezing into your arm, covering coughs and avoiding unnecessary close contact with individuals who are symptomatic.
Studies have shown that influenza virus can survive on environmental surfaces and can infect a person for 2-8 hours after being deposited on the surface.
Germs can be spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose or mouth. Droplets from a cough or sneeze of an infected person move through the air. Germs can be spread when a person touches respiratory droplets from another person on a surface like a desk, for example, and then touches their own eyes, mouth or nose before washing their hands. Contamination can be significantly reduced by regular handwashing and the use of alcohol-based cleansers for surface cleaning.
Several chemical germicides including chlorine, hydrogen peroxide, detergents (soap), idophors (iodine-based antiseptics) and alcohols are effective against human influenza viruses.
INFORMATION ON THE WEB
ABOUT UA's HEALTH SERVICES
Health Services is located in Room 260 of the Student Recreation and Wellness Center (show on map). The staff includes board-certified medical doctors, registered nurses, nurse practitioners and a health educator.
If you have any questions, please call us before your visit at 330-972-7808. Health Services' hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Last appointment at 4:30 p.m.) The office is closed on weekends and holidays.
When Health Services is closed, students needing immediate medical attention for acute illnesses or injuries may receive care at nearby Akron City Hospital/Summa Health System. In some situations, transportation to and from Health Services or Akron City Hospital may be provided by University Police (330-972-2911). Students are reminded that fees for hospital treatment and/or ambulance transport, if needed, are the responsibility of the student.