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Flu Activity Peaked in February, with Influenza A Viruses Predominating

In the most recent Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides a summary of influenza activity in the U.S. for the 2010-2011 season.

According to the CDC, influenza activity peaked in early February, and influenza A (H3N2) viruses predominated. The proportion of influenza B viruses reported was highest early in the season, with the majority of these viruses reported from the southeastern states, and 2009 influenza A (H1N1) viruses became the most common in several regions in the later part of the season. Almost all influenza viruses sent to CDC for further characterization were antigenically similar to one of the components of the 2010-2011 Northern Hemisphere vaccine.

In comparison with the past three seasons, the 2010-2011 influenza season was less severe than the pandemic year (2009-2010) and the 2007-2008 season, but more severe than the 2008-2009 influenza season, as determined by the percentage of deaths resulting from pneumonia or influenza, the number of influenza-associated pediatric deaths reported, and the percentage of visits to outpatient clinics for ILI. However, all age groups were affected substantially during the 2010-2011 season because of widespread cocirculation of influenza A (H3N2), 2009 influenza A (H1N1), and influenza B viruses.

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