Symptoms of the flu

accreditation
0:00
play article
Subscribers can listen to this article

If you have the flu, some or all of these symptoms may be present:

  • A high fever (often higher than 39°C) with chills. The fever is highest in children and least marked in the elderly.
  • Dry cough
  • Sore throat
  • Blocked nose or nasal discharge
  • Sweating and shivering
  • Muscle aches and pains, especially in the legs (the “I've been run over by a bus” feeling)
  • A general feeling of malaise (not feeling well)
  • Fatigue and wanting to sleep all day

Symptoms can occur abruptly, and it’s sometimes possible to pinpoint the exact hour of the day that symptoms began.

Children often vomit and have diarrhoea, but these symptoms are infrequent in adults. In addition, flu complications may occur.

Reviewed by Cape Town-based general practitioner, Dr Dalia Hack. March 2019.

Read more:

- What causes the flu?

- How is the flu diagnosed?

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Have you entered our Health of the Nation survey?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes
27% - 9954 votes
No
73% - 26318 votes
Vote