COLUMBUS, Ohio– There have been two flu-related deaths in children in Ohio this season.
The first was a 4-year-old boy from Montgomery County. The Ohio Department of Health reported the second was a 1-year-old boy from Lucas County.
Flu season begins in October, and typically peaks between December and February.
“It’s not possible to say precisely when this flu season will peak or end or how severe it will be. That’s why getting the flu vaccination is the safest and most effective way to prevent the flu for everyone 6 months and older. Flu vaccination also can reduce the severity of illness if you do get sick,” Dr. Clint Koenig, Ohio Department of Health medical director, in a news release on Wednesday.
In Cuyahoga County, there have been two flu-related deaths, including a 70-year-old woman.
The Ohio Department of Health said influenza A, or H3N2, is the most common virus this season. H3N2-dominant flu seasons are associated with more severe illness, especially among children and older adults. Vaccine effectiveness against H3N2 viruses has been around 30 percent.
Symptoms of the flu include fever, headache, cough, runny or stuffy nose, fatigue and muscle aches. The flu can lead to complications like pneumonia, dehydration and worsening of chronic medical conditions.