The flu has arrived early and with a vengeance in 2013.
It is now widespread across most U.S. states, including the Sunshine State.
Vaccines are still available, with a high-dose version that may KO chances older patients may succumb to the virus.
A high-dose flu shot? If you've never heard of the vaccine, you're not alone. It is only a couple years old but effective in senior citizens, who often are vulnerable to flu's complications, which include pneumonia.
The high-dose flu vaccine was developed with patients 65 and older in mind. They can handle the mega-dose of antigens that the vaccine delivers, which is four times the usual amount.
That high does should yield a heightened immune response and thus make it much more unlikely the older person will succumb to the flu.
The flu vaccine also contains no live virus, so a person cannot develop the flu from receiving the shot. Side effects are rare but a patient might expect some redness in the area of the shot, and some mild pain.
If you or a loved one is older and may benefit from the higher dose, most clinics, doctors and retailers who offer medical services should carry the vaccine.
Where to get a shot
Where to Get a Flu Shot
The flu's impact in 2013
Widespread Flu Outbreak in More Than 40 States