Flu or Flu-like illness in chronically ill or disabled children

Which children are at risk of complications from flu or flu-like illness?

For most children, flu or other flu-like viruses are a relatively mild illness which gets better on its own. 

However, some children may be at greater risk of developing further complications if they get flu or a flu-like illness. These include some children with:

•    lung or breathing problems (e.g. asthma), 
•    heart problems, 
•    problems with the immune system, 
•    as well as conditions such as diabetes, 
•    cerebral palsy, and 
•    Down’s syndrome.  

In addition, some children who were born prematurely, or who have previously had illnesses such as bronchiolitis or wheezing, may also be at greater risk of complications from flu or flu-like illness.

We asked Dr Kay Wang a GP and researcher with a specialist interest in flu or flu-like illness to help explain which children are at risk of complications from flu or ‘Flu-like illness’ and what sort of complications they can get.

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