Flu outbreak: What to do when you’re at the pharmacy

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – It’s been nearly a decade since the nation has experienced a flu outbreak this bad.

And worried parents want to be prepared.

Concerns about this aggressive flu season are spreading, much like the virus.

Now drugs like “Tamiflu” are flying off shelves.

But whole-sale retailers seem to be stocked and ready.

Karl D. Fiebelkorn, with the Department of Pharmacy Practice at University at Buffalo’s School of Pharmacy said, “There are generics out there too I haven’t seen a shortage. I contacted one of the major whole sale retailers in the area. They they have not seen a shortage, there could be spotty shortages there have been a  lot of outbreaks in Erie County, so we have to be really careful with that.”

You do need a prescription for Tamiflu, it’s a symptom relief medication that should be taken within the first 48 hours of your diagnosis.

And its something Fielbelkorn school recommends you take if you’re exposed. “The side effects of the flu are really going to outweigh the side effects of the Tamiflu. Because it’s very dangerous to get the flu this year. This H3N2 is a very strong strain of the flu this year.”

It’s not too late to get a flu shot. And Fiebelkorn says that’s the first and best step for prevention.

That, on top of staying away from anyone who has the flu, and washing your hands.  But  when it comes to those over the counter prevention measures like taking “Airborne” or “Emergen-c,”  Fiebelkorn says, don’t waste your time.

“I don’t think that’s going to help with the symptoms that much your best bet is to check with a doctor you have to drink a lot of fluid you have to make sure people check up on you. Chicken noodle soup is probably one of the best things you can do, and have mom take care of you.”

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