Eye on Health: New treatment for the flu
Flu season is here.
There is a new weapon to fight the virus.
"This is a nice addition to our treatment options.
"The FDA recently approved Xofluza," Dr. Mark Anderson, Infectious Disease Specialist at CHI Memorial said. "This medication is a one dose treatment option so that makes it very attractive to us so we can give someone a single dose. We don't have to worry about them remembering to take all their doses over five days."
Which Dr. Anderson says is the case when it comes to taking Tami-Flu to treat the flu.
Xofluza is the first new drug approved to treat influenza in 20 years. It's designed to be taken within 48 hours of becoming sick. It's for those 12 and older who are in good health.
Dr. Mark Anderson says this medication perhaps decreases the number of hours until you're symptom free, pretty close to Tami-Flu.
"Xofluza works by suppressing the viral replication and targeting an enzyme the virus needs to multiply," Dr. Mark Anderson explained, "gives the ability to develop resistance, so it's nice to have something that works in a different way, and it may be for very serious cases or if we see resistance, we may have to treat people with combination therapy."
Dr. Anderson said it is important to remember that while Xofluza is a good option for some patients, it doesn't prevent you from getting the flu, but it should make you feel better faster. In other words, it does not replace getting the flu vaccine.
For more information, visit Memorial's website.
Next week health departments in Tennessee will be giving out free flu shots. The shots will be given December 5, and no appointments are needed.