CDC gives update on latest flu virus numbers

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The CDC has released new numbers on the flu this year and it could be on track to break seasonal records.

The virus is still on the rise and we're seeing a lot of people treated for severe symptoms.

Typically, flu season lasts about 11 to 20 weeks and right now we are at week eleven. However, officials say it this point it is not slowing down.

It started with a bad cough, then 10-year-old Keyona Richardson ended up on a ventilator unable to speak with complications from H1N1, an A strain flu virus.

"She went to school with no problem. Her school nurse sent her home with a 102-fever," said Keyona's mom.

The flu typically comes on quickly with fever, body aches, cough and runny nose and Keyona is now recovering. The CDC says hospitalizations due to the flu are way up this year.

More than 60 children have died and the flu is also hitting healthy adults older than 50 a lot harder than usual.

The vaccine isn't a great match for the predominant A strain, the H3N2, which is typically more severe. But there are other B strains also now going around and the vaccine is more effective against these viruses.

Pediatricians tell parents to watch for signs of trouble.

Is your child having difficulty breathing? Is your child dehydrated? Is your child blue or bluish around the mouth? And is your child having a fever with a rash?

These are signs of a medical emergency. Also, if your child is extremely lethargic or if their fever breaks and then returns with worsening symptoms, get them to the doctor.

CDC officials are still calling this season "moderately severe." At this point, level of flu-like activity is as high as it was at the peak in 2009.

That's when we saw the H1N1 "swine flu" going around.

It's still too early to tell whether this season will be worse than that, but we do know this flu season is expected to continue for several more weeks and it is still in high activity in 48 states.

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