What Are the Possible Complications of Flu?

Receiving an annual flu shot is the most effective way to protect yourself from this viral infection and its potential complications. Consider visiting your local hospital to inquire about receiving a flu vaccination . This is particularly important if you are at a high risk of developing complications, such as if you have a suppressed immune system, if you’re pregnant, or if you’re 65 or older. In the event that you do develop complications of the flu, the emergency care physicians of West Hills Hospital are here to help you feel well again.


Pneumonia is a serious infection that may develop as a result of influenza. Pneumonia causes the air sacs of the lungs to become inflamed and filled with pus or fluid. Some individuals may experience mild symptoms of pneumonia; while for others, pneumonia can be life-threatening and requires hospitalization. The symptoms of pneumonia can include fever, sweating, coughing, shaking chills, shortness of breath, and chest pain.


Bronchitis is another respiratory problem that can develop as a possible complication of the flu . It involves the inflammation of the bronchial tube lining. Some of the symptoms of bronchitis are similar to those of pneumonia, such as shortness of breath, chest discomfort, and coughing. Coughing may linger for several weeks after other symptoms have resolved.

Chronic Health Conditions

Another major concern for some people who contract the flu is the possibility of chronic health conditions becoming worse. Even if these health issues are well managed, the flu can worsen these conditions. Individuals with diabetes are more likely to contract the flu because of impaired immune function and they are more likely to experience elevated blood sugar levels while ill. Individuals with asthma may suffer from asthma attacks while fighting off the flu. The flu can also be dangerous for those with heart disease such as congestive heart failure. It increases the risk of dehydration, respiratory failure, and even a heart attack.

For more than 50 years, West Hills Hospital has been dedicated to providing quality care for West Valley residents, including emergency care , preventive wellness services, cancer care, and maternity services. Our highly trained providers on the emergency care team are available 24/7. For medical emergencies in the West Hills area, please call 911. Otherwise, you can contact our hospital at (818) 676-4321.

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