This is how healthcare workers test for the flu and COVID-19. When you have both at the same time, it’s called a co-infection. But this time, the media clung to a nickname: “flurona”.
It all started with a headline from Israel calling a pregnant woman with flu and COVID the country’s first flurona case. Some misunderstood this to mean the first case of a new disease.
It’s not. But social media and media picked up the name and it stuck. Dr. Jonathan Grein helps fix the problem. He is an infectious disease physician and director of hospital epidemiology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.
A medical diagnosis of co-infection of any kind is not new. And at this point, Grein says flu and COVID co-infections are nothing to panic about. “There doesn’t seem to be any major sign that getting infected with both makes you that much sicker, but we just don’t know, and it’s too early to know,” Grein says. “Common sense would dictate getting infected with two things is definitely not good.”
Common symptoms to look for: dry cough, fever, sore throat, headache or body aches and feeling exhausted. Co-infections are not the norm. Grein says his hospitals have only seen a few people with flu and COVID at the same time. Much like co-infections elsewhere in the country, all cases were mild and in younger patients.