Jan 31, 2013 1:46 PM by NBC News

Flu patients spread virus farther than you might think

Flu patients may be emitting virus particles up to six feet away from where they are sitting.

A new study out of Wake Forest University studied 60 flu patients. They measured how much of the virus was in their system and how much was seeping into the air around them.

They found nearly half released virus into the air, and one in five was a so-called "super-emitter", meaning they released up to 30 times more virus into the air.

The researchers say their study shows the virus can spread further than they previously thought, and doctors should protect themselves while caring for flu patients.



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