Influenza (the flu) is a contagious respiratory disease caused by the influenza virus. Influenza can cause mild to severe illness and can result in death. Symptoms of the flu include:
The CDC estimates that between 5 and 20% of people in the U.S. get the flu each year, and more than 200,000 are hospitalized due to complications including pneumonia and inflammation of the heart. Every year the flu kills 3,000-49,000 Americans. Vaccination is the best way to prevent the flu, and the CDC recommends vaccination for all adults.
For more information about the flu, visit http://www.cdc.gov/flu/keyfacts.htm