The Washington Post
Dec. 15, 2022
How a viral siege is making some people sick for weeks, even months
As of last week, nearly all 50 states were seeing a high or very high level of respiratory illness, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned that rates will likely continue to increase. U.S. officials estimate that so far this season, there have been at least 13 million cases of flu, 120,000 hospitalizations and 7,300 deaths, including of 21 children. Doctors say the chaos has resulted in frazzled parents begging for antibiotics (even when they are told it won't help their children recover from viruses), shortages of basic essential medications such as fever reducers and albuterol to open airways, and a barrage of questions about the interaction of different viruses in our bodies. "When you take a pandemic and then add co-circulation of other viruses in the mix, you might expect to see some weird things," said Deepta Bhattacharya, an immunologist at the University of Arizona.