01/10/06 — First case of flu hits county's hospital

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First case of flu hits county's hospital

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on January 10, 2006 1:55 PM

The season's first case of flu in Wayne County has been reported, with the youth admitted to Wayne Memorial Hospital over the weekend.

Dr. Dave Tayloe of Goldsboro Pediatrics said the practice saw several children with flu-like symptoms on Friday. On Sunday, a 12-year-old male tested positive and was referred to the hospital for treatment.

The child's main symptoms were a 105-degree fever and vomiting, as well as a cough and difficulty breathing, which might have been attributed to a history of asthma, Tayloe said.

A nasal swab or "rapid test" was administered, which gave immediate results. It has proven effective in the few years since being introduced, he said.

"This is the first time this year we have started getting positives," Tayloe said. The youth was admitted to the hospital for I.V. fluids and to relieve the congestion, he added.

Health Director James Roosen agreed that the rapid flu test has done much to quickly determine whether a person has the illness. So far, though, incidents of flu this year have been sporadic.

"They haven't ramped up yet," he said, with only two positive cases reported in the state as of last week. That is not necessarily the case across the country, where cases of influenza have been more widespread.

Roosen said North Carolina uses a surveillance system, keeping track of reported cases of influenza. The symptoms are monitored to determine if a patient has an "influenza-like illness."

While there has not been a lot of activity thus far, he said it is good for people to be concerned about the possibility.

"The more concerned they are, the more they'll put these measures into practice," he said. "All you can do at this point is practice good personal hygiene - don't work if you're sick, take good care of yourself, keep your immune system healthy and wash your hands, wash your hands, wash your hands."