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Diabetes and the Seasonal Flu

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Switch to:

Diabetes and the Seasonal Flu

women getting vaccine

Did you know that if you have diabetes, you have a higher chance of developing complications from the seasonal flu? Although the flu poses a health risk for everyone regardless of their overall health condition, people with type 1, type 2, or gestational diabetes are more likely to develop pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus infections, and ear infections when sick with the flu.

The best way to protect yourself against the flu each year is with the seasonal flu vaccine, which is recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for all people with diabetes. However, if you do catch the seasonal flu, it’s very important to consult your health care provider to create a sick-day plan for carefully managing both conditions. It should include how often to check your blood glucose levels, which medicines to continue and their dosage levels, managing intake of carbohydrates and fluids, and checking for ketones.


If you experience any of the following symptoms, you should seek medical care immediately:

  • Vomiting or diarrhea for more than six hours
  • Fever or sickness for longer than two days without improvement
  • Glucose levels higher than 240 mg/dL despite administering sick-day insulin
  • Moderate-to-large ketones in urine
  • Fruity breath
  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
  • Persistent dizziness, confusion, or inability to arouse
  • Seizures
  • Symptoms of dehydration or not urinating
  • Severe muscle pain
  • Severe weakness or unsteadiness
  • Worsening of chronic medical conditions

If you have diabetes but don’t have a sick-day plan, you should schedule an appointment with your primary care provider to create one. And whether you have diabetes or not, you should always take steps to protect yourself against seasonal flu. Schedule your seasonal flu vaccine with AdvantageCare Physicians today.



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