Japanese flu: What are the symptoms and does the flu jab protect against the new strain?

Australian flu wreaked havoc down under during its winter with hundreds of thousands of reports of people being infected and around 300 people who caught the illness reported to have died. 

Earlier this week, flu was confirmed in all postcodes in the UK, and the NHS, alongside other health bodies, have issued advice on symptoms, the best way to avoid catching the virus and how to treat it. 

One of the ways to prevent getting the flu is the flu jab. 

Professor Paul Consford, Medical Director of Public Health England, issued in a statement this morning saying: “It’s not too late to get vaccinated.”

This week there have been reports of Japanese flu in Greater Manchester, but will the flu vaccine protect against this new strain of influenza? 

Japanese flu symptoms 

Aussie and French flu - which experts have been warning could soon enter the UK - are strength A, which means they have more severe symptoms than Japanese flu, which is strength B. 

But the symptoms for Japanese flu are very similar to other types of flu. 

The NHS lists the following: 

  • A sudden fever - a temperature of 38C or above 
  • Aching body 
  • Feeling tired or exhausted 
  • Dry, chesty cough
  • Sore throat
  • Headache 
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhoea or tummy pain
  • Nausea and being sick 

Japanese flu tends to effect mainly children, but while symptoms are less severe, it does tend to be more contagious, according to medical professionals. 

Is protection against Yamagata included in the flu jab? 

Pharmacist and Jakemansx expert, Marvin Munzu revealed who and who won’t be protected against Japanese flu with the flu vaccine. 

He said: “The flu vaccine given to children provides protection against Yamagata. This will be what is available at your GP and within schools. 

“This protection is not in the adult vaccine - however this is nothing to worry about as Japanese flu tends to only effect children.” 

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