Chester County teen's death maybe flu related

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The Chester County Health Department is investigating the sudden death of a teenager last Friday.

The Chester County Health Department is investigating the sudden death of a teenager last Friday.

Action News is still waiting for official confirmation on the cause of death but it does appear to be related to the flu.

A message from the superintendent of Downingtown Schools reads, "Our thoughts and prayers are with Andrew's friends and family at this most difficult time."

Andrew Specht was a senior at Downington West High School.

School officials say he collapsed while working at his part time job on Friday.

According to his obituary, he passed away at the hospital of complications from the flu.

Health Department officials can't confirm that as the cause of death, but do say Specht tested positive for Influenza A.

Most cases of the flu this year so far have been A, and the predominant subtype H3N2 is already known to cause severe illness.

Plus, the vaccine is not a good match for the mutated strain going around.

The CDC reports 3,000 to 49,000 flu-related deaths every year. Local doctors say they expect we will be on the higher side of that range this year.

If you have any severe symptoms - such as high fever, extreme headache or fatigue, or shortness of breath - you need to go to the Emergency Room.

And local flu activity is picking up. As everyone gets together for the holidays, make sure you are washing your hands often. And if you are sick, stay away from others.

We will wait to hear the official cause of death in Andrew's case.

Related Topics:
healthhealthcheckpa. newsfluDowningtown Borough
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