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Influenza virus is spread from respiratory secretions of infected persons. As a result, infection can be transmitted through sneezing and coughing, as well as talking and touching. Signs and symptoms of upper and/or lower respiratory tract involvement are common such as coughing, sneezing, wheezing, fatigue, fevers. Influenza generally is an acute, self-limited, and usually uncomplicated disease in healthy children.
The clinical manifestations of influenza virus infection vary with the child's age and previous experience with influenza virus. The classic symptoms of uncomplicated influenza virus infection include abrupt onset of fever, headache, myalgia, and malaise, accompanied by manifestations of respiratory-tract illness, such as cough, sore throat, and runny nose. Patients with uncomplicated influenza usually improve gradually over approximately one week (with or without therapy), but symptoms—especially cough—may persist, particularly in young children. Weakness and easy fatigability may last for several weeks in older children and are sometimes referred to as "post-influenza asthenia."