Just when you thought the 2018-19 flu season was over, it suddenly spiked. Lasting 21 weeks, the longest in a decade, the last flu season was unusual in that it had two separate waves of influenza, according to a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
CDC officials explained the unusual pattern as almost having two flu seasons within one. Flu activity surged between October 2018 to February 2019, then a second surge occurred in mid-February lasting through mid-May. A typical flu season has one spike in winter.
Despite its length, the last flu season was only moderate in severity, with an estimated 36,400 to 61,200 flu-related deaths. In comparison, the severe flu season of 2017-2018 was responsible for more than 80,000 deaths, including 180 children.