CHICAGO — The state of Illinois has witnessed a rise in cases of stomach flu, with some patients being hospitalized due to severe symptoms. Typically, norovirus cases are reported between November and April each year. However, the Midwest region has observed a significant surge in cases since mid-January.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), norovirus, commonly known as stomach flu, is not associated with influenza but is highly contagious. The virus spreads through contaminated food, water, or surfaces, as well as by close contact with infected individuals.
The local county health departments advise people to seek medical attention if they feel ill. The symptoms of norovirus infection include vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramps, and nausea. These symptoms usually last for one or two days.
To prevent the spread of the virus, the CDC recommends washing hands regularly with soap and water, disinfecting surfaces, and avoiding close contact with infected individuals. Additionally, people who are sick should not prepare food or care for others until they have recovered completely.
Norovirus is a highly contagious virus that is not related to influenza but can cause severe symptoms. The recent spike in cases in the Midwest region of Illinois highlights the need for people to take necessary precautions and seek medical attention if they experience any symptoms of the virus.