Doctors warn of possibly severe flu season

Posted: Updated:
EAST MEADOW -

Health officials predict this year's flu season could be severe.

Diane Manca, who came down with a serious case a few years ago, says now she gets a vaccine regularly.

"When you have the flu, you never want to get it again," she says.

Dr. John Zaso, an East Meadow pediatrician, says severe cases can be dangerous no matter how healthy you are.

"It can be deadly," he says. "This year we're seeing earlier activity and more virulent activity. It's more violent, so to speak."

Doctors say it's not too late to get a vaccine, even though the cold weather is already moving in. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it takes about two weeks for the vaccine to take effect.

"Everybody 6 months and up, whether or not you have medical conditions, healthy or not, adult, child, pregnant women, should all be vaccinated," Dr. Zaso says. "That's the best way to help prevent the spread of the disease."

That said, it's unclear how effective this year's vaccine will actually be. Reports from Australia say the H3N2 match only worked about 10 percent of the time.

And some Long Islanders like Pat Beiger say they avoid getting the flu shot for fear of negative side effects.

"I had a bad experience, and I was sick for months," Beiger says.

  • SlideshowsSlideshowsMore>>

  • Photos: 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' premiere in L.A.

    Photos: 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' premiere in L.A.

    the premiere of Disney Pictures and Lucasfilm's 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' at The Shrine Auditorium on December 9, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.the premiere of Disney Pictures and Lucasfilm's 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' at The Shrine Auditorium on December 9, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.

    Sights and scenes at the premiere of Disney Pictures and Lucasfilm's 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' at the Shrine Auditorium on Dec. 9, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.

    Sights and scenes at the premiere of Disney Pictures and Lucasfilm's 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' at the Shrine Auditorium on Dec. 9, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.

  • Your Long Island Weather Photos

    Your Long Island Weather Photos

    Saturday, December 9 2017 3:24 PM EST2017-12-09 20:24:57 GMT
    Your Long Island Weather PhotosYour Long Island Weather Photos

    Share your weather photos with us on Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #LIWeather.

    Share your weather photos with us on Twitter and Instagram using the hashtag #LIWeather.

  • Photos: Yoga + Brunch Club holiday pop-up event

    Photos: Yoga + Brunch Club holiday pop-up event

    Saturday, December 9 2017 2:15 PM EST2017-12-09 19:15:37 GMT

    Yoga + Brunch Club LI hosted a holiday pop-up event on Dec. 9 at the Brush Barn in Smithtown. The club teamed up with Toys for Tots to help give back this holiday season.   Photos courtesy News 12's Stephanie Rose.

    Yoga + Brunch Club LI hosted a holiday pop-up event on Dec. 9 at the Brush Barn in Smithtown. The club teamed up with Toys for Tots to help give back this holiday season.   Photos courtesy News 12's Stephanie Rose.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 5 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Time Warner® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login, create an account or subscribe to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."