'Man flu' just as prevalent in women

Man flu is a medical condition that causes men to proclaim they are gravely ill and possibly at death's door with the flu, when they in fact only have a cold. But new research has revealed an astounding fact - women are just as likely to exaggerate their symptoms and claim to have the flu as their male counterparts.

A poll by Panadol Cold and Flu showed almost half the people complaining of flu to their doctor had misdiagnosed themselves. Pharmacists said 61 per cent of their customers were guilty of the "crime". However, only 54 per cent of those claiming they were suffering from the flu were men.

Anecdotal evidence highlights men's ability to indulge in extreme theatrics when struggling with a sniffly nose and sore throat. Aucklander Billie Hawley said: "While I'm happy to take some cold and flu remedies and carry on, my husband just loves to curl up on the sofa so if anyone calls round they can see he's sick (the bedroom's far too private). He then proceeds to tell them he has pneumonia and that he is close to dying."

Another woman said her man "dies a very noisy death", and another wrote that her hubby "has a whisky, curls up and acts like a big baby".

And the difference between a cold and the flu? A cold is generally a nose and throat problem, while the flu is more severe with fever, headache, muscle aches, chestiness, and loss of appetite.

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