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Maryland Hospitals See Spike In People With Flu Symptoms

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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A warning from health leaders as hospitals across the state see a spike in people coming down with flu-like symptoms.

Monique Griego has more on this growing problem.

According to doctors, within the past week or so, the number of people coming in has doubled.

Sandra Lee is spending her birthday at Franklin Square Medical Center after coming down with flu-like symptoms.

“I don’t know what happened. All of a sudden it just came up on me,” said Lee.

She’s not alone. MedStar hospitals across the state are seeing a spike in the number of cases. Since Christmas, emergency rooms have been inundated.

“The flu’s got to be bad this year. Has to be. There’s too many people,” said Lee. “I had went somewhere else first and it was just too crowded.”

Right now, Baltimore’s Franklin Square is the busiest in the state.

“It was pretty much standing room only in the waiting room up until last night,” said Dr. Edana Mann.

In the beginning of December, around 20 to 25 people a day were coming in with flu symptoms. This January, that number doubled to 50 people a day.

“[Symptoms include] fevers, body aches, cough, congestion. Some people having nausea, vomiting,” said Dr. Jonathan Hansen.

Hansen said the flu is especially dangerous in the elderly, very young and those with underlying health conditions, but for others, treatment is about controlling the symptoms.

“Take Tylenol, Motrin, take lots of fluids and stay home. If you’re sick, don’t expose others to it,” said Hansen.

He also said while covering a cough and washing your hands can help keep people healthy, it’s still not to late to get a flu shot.

That is something Lee wishes she’d done.

“Get your flu shot. It ain’t worth it. I feel rough,” said Lee.

Every year, on average, around 25,000 people die from the flu.

Doctors said the flu virus could stick around all the way through March.

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