Flu patients overwhelm hospitals

CREATED Jan. 9, 2013

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MILWAUKEE - The Mayor in Boston has declared a health emergency because of the flu.  The Chicago Tribune is reporting that hospitals are overwhelmed with flu patients, and here in Milwaukee, some patients with minor problems are being sent to other hospitals because ER's have been so busy.

Dan Brezgel's 8 month old son is just starting to feel better after the flu hit him over christmas.

"We were kind of worried when we brought him home with the flu.  Just thinking, oh great, now what?" Brezgel said.

The number of people hospitalized because of the flu has doubled just in the past week.

"We are seeing some increased levels of flu here in Wisconsin, and in Milwaukee in particular," said Dr. Jeffrey Smith of Aurora St. Luke's.

Doctors tell us if you think you have the flu call your doctor first before you head to the ER. That's because you might get others sick, and doctors say the best medicine is rest, fluids and Tylenol.

"If you have heart disease or diabetes or  lung disease and develop the flu, then you need to be extra cautious.  Those are the patients who have a higher tendency to get pneumonia or other complications," said Dr. Smith.

As for the Brezgel's they are hoping little Kelvin gets better soon, and that he doesn't pass the flu around.

"Just keep him home," Brezgel said.

The state health department tells doesn't expect the flu season to peak for another couple of weeks.