Fast Five Quiz: Influenza Practice Essentials

Michael Stuart Bronze, MD


November 03, 2021

A common myth about influenza is that exposure to cold weather without a sufficient coat, or having wet hair or sitting in a drafty location, can increase risk for infection. Several studies have shown that higher humidity levels impair the ability of influenza virus to infect.

Factors known to increase the risk of developing influenza or complications of influenza include:

  • Older age (≥ 65 years)

  • Younger age (< 2 years)

  • Asthma

  • Neurologic and neurodevelopment conditions

  • Blood disorders (eg, anemia)

  • Chronic lung disease (eg, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis)

  • Endocrine disorders (eg, diabetes mellitus)

  • Heart disease

  • Kidney disease

  • Liver disease

  • Metabolic disorders

  • Obesity (BMI ≥ 40 kg/m2)

  • Long-term aspirin therapy in patients younger than 19 years

  • Weakened immune system

Read more about the etiology and epidemiology of influenza.


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