Many Flu Victims Are Young, Healthy and Vaccinated: Doctors

In North Texas, like the rest of the country, doctors are seeing all sorts of patients suffering from influenza. They are even seeing the most unlikely cases: the young, the healthy and the vaccinated.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said this season there is an increase in the number of flu patients in the age range of 18-49, many of whom are otherwise healthy.

Garrett Graham, 24, of Dallas, is one of those cases. He was vaccinated in late August, before the height of the flu season. Still, just after Christmas, Garrett got symptoms which hit him fast and hard.

"A lot of pressure in my head, fever, chills, the number one thing ... the toilet became my best friend for a few days," said Graham.

His doctor at Baylor Medical Center at Irving confirms that Graham is one the unlikely cases, a young, healthy patient without any underlying health conditions who had been vaccinated and still got the flu.

This year though, there are no unlikely victims, said Dr. Bradley Jones.

"It's striking everybody, not just old and babies, young people, healthy people. No one is immune," said Jones.

The main question remains, there is no answer as to why so many folks are coming down with the flu.

“I think we can only speculate. It’s a really bad year, it’s so widespread,” said Jones.

The main take-away is to get the vaccine. Jones said Graham was able to get over the flu more quickly because he had been vaccinated.

“Usually you’re protected somewhat, at least, so if you get the flu you’re not as sick,” said Jones.

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