So we all know the flu is not a fun experience. But, while your laying there covered in 3 blankets and wiping your nose every 3 seconds have you ever wondered how the flu works? How does a collection of tiny single, celled organisms keep a human down for days at a time? Well, Carexpress urgent care is here to spread some knowledge about this little virus.
First of all, it’s important to note that the flu and a Cold are not the same thing. The Flu is caused by the Influenza Virus, that’s why we call it the flu. The Common Cold is actually caused by a different virus all together. The 2 viruses have similar symptoms, but a cold tends to be milder and less likely to morph into a more serious threat.
The Flu is a virus, which means it reproduces by infecting other cells. Once the flu is in your system, it will set to work by infecting a nearby cell. It binds to the surface of the cell and releases it’s RNA (it’s genetic information) into the cell’s nucleus. Once inside, the virus replicates and takes over the cell. Kind of like a cellular zombie! The virus keeps reproducing until the cell it inhabits finally bursts open and releases all the new viruses into your body, where they then move on to infect more cells. Think of that, every time you get the flu, it’s like the walking dead is happening in your body!
This all starts in your respiratory system, symptoms don’t usually start here although the replication will cause swelling of respiratory tissue. Once the virus makes it’s way into your bloodstream though, that’s when symptoms start to appear. This is also the point your immune system really kick in to fight off the infection.
If you find yourself being invaded by the flu virus, or want to prevent an infection, come into your nearest CareXpress Urgent Care today!