At a time when the world is gripped with the Omicron variant of COVID-19, a woman who recently gave birth in Israel has been diagnosed with flu and COVID-19 simultaneously, a condition which is being dubbed as the ‘flurona,’ media reports said.
The first case was reported in Petah Tikva city, in central Israel, on December 23, a report on Ynet news portal said.
The woman, who was unvaccinated, has shown relatively mild symptoms of the disease and will be discharged soon, Wion reported.
Also read: We're veering towards endemic situation; omicron isn't last variant: Biocon's Kiran Mazumdar Shaw
Health experts are studying the combination of infection to determine if it could cause serious illness.
What is ‘flurona’?
According to experts, ‘flurona’ is not a new variant, but a case of double infection of the coronavirus and the influenza virus. The presence of both viruses could result in full range of severe symptoms including pneumonia, respiratory complications and myocarditis, which could lead to death if left untreated.
Israeli health officials have warned of a “twindemic” that could lead to patients swarming the hospitals with flu and COVID-19.
The symptoms of the flurona are the same as coronavirus and the flu virus. Those with high temperature, loss of smell or taste, a persistent cough, sore throat, headache and runny nose must consult the doctor immediately and get tested for the COVID-19 virus. To prevent the spread of germs, it is better to avoid close contact, maintain social distancing, stay at home when sick, wash your hands, practise good health habits and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
The health ministry in Israel has appealed to everyone to get flu vaccine shots. The vaccines are available for anyone over six months. The government has also requested everyone to get the COVID-19 shot at the same time.
Also read: Third COVID-19 wave has started; asymptomatic omicron cases can recover at home, says Dr Shashank Joshi
Anticipating more COVID-19 cases, the Israel government has authorised a fourth vaccine shot as a booster dose for immuno-compromised people.
The country has already administered booster shots to 4.2 million citizens of the total 9.4 million Israelis.
Flu and COVID-19 reports in Israel
Last week, Israel’s health ministry had said 1,849 Israelis had been hospitalised with the flu as on December 29, including 605 children and 124 pregnant women and new mothers. Meanwhile, Israel had reported more than 4,000 new COVID-19 cases as on December 30.
(Edited by : Shoma Bhattacharjee)
First Published: IST