Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) anticipates another active flu season for 2019-2020. Use the resources on this page to understand what the flu is, how to prevent the flu and what to do if you or someone you know thinks they may have flu symptoms.

About Influenza (flu)

Influenza, commonly referred to as the "flu," is a highly contagious respiratory illness caused by a virus that infects the nose, throat and lungs. It can cause moderate to severe illness. It is not what people sometimes refer to as the “stomach flu” where there is primarily vomiting and diarrhea. That is a gastrointestinal virus, not respiratory.

Flu occurs in the United States most often in the fall and winter. In Spokane County, the virus commonly peaks in January through mid-March.

The flu spreads from person to person by coughing and sneezing and can spread to others before a person knows they're sick. Adults can infect others one day before symptoms develop and up to five days after becoming sick. Kids can spread the virus for 10 or more days.

What are the symptoms of flu?

  • Fever
  • Cough, which can be severe
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Body aches
  • Extreme fatigue (tiredness)
  • Headache, which can be severe
  • Some people may have vomiting or diarrhea – this is more common in children than in adults

If you or someone you know has these symptoms and they are severe, contact your doctor, nurse or clinic as soon as possible. The best way to tell if you have flu is for a healthcare provider to swab your throat and have a lab confirm the diagnosis.


Flu Resources