The influenza disease acquires its name based on Italian for "influence", Latin: influential. It used to be thought that the disease was caused by a bad influence from the heavens. According to (http://virus.stanford.edu/uda/).
The influenza virus causes an acute, febrile, respiratory illness. Outbreaks follow a seasonal pattern, concentrated in winter, and vary in distribution and severity between years. The causes for spreading influenza virus are by the following direct contact, such as shaking hands,
Small droplets that form when a person sneezes or coughs, Contact with objects such as handkerchiefs that have been in contact with fluids from an infected person's nose or throat.
The common symptoms for the influenza are the following: Fever, Feeling feverish/chills, Cough, Sore throat, Runny or stuffy nose, Muscle aches, Headaches, Vomiting and diarrhea. According to http://www.niaid.nih.gov/topics/Flu/understandingFlu/Pages/sympComp.aspx.
Influenza virus infects the epithelial cells of the respiratory tract. The cells die, in part due to the direct effects of the virus on the cell, and also possibly due to the effects of interferon. Cell death at later times may also result from the actions of cytotoxic T-cells, according to http://pathmicro.med.sc.edu/mhunt/flu.htm.
Yes the disease is contagious, most healthy adults can infect others beginning one day before symptoms develop and up to a week after becoming sick. Young children and people with weakened immune systems might be able to infect others for an even longer time. http://www.niaid.nih.gov/topics/Flu/understandingFlu/Pages/transmission.aspx
There are a lot of treatments for influenza disease, Annual influenza vaccination is recommended for all persons 6 months of age and older and most people over 50, also pregnant women’s. Protection of persons at higher risk for influenza-related complications should continue to be a focus of vaccination efforts. The most common treatment is...