I second the question of a pp who asked what to take at the beginning of the flu, b/c how are you really going to "know" what strain you have--it is worth consideration to ask this and really think about it. And if you treat the early symptomes with echinacea and black elderberry extract in the early stages, could you possible prevent a (theoretical) cytokine storm before it even starts? I have to wonder. The researchers and scientists don't really know all that much about cytokine storms. Important questions to ask.
I know one can be tested for flu but how soon can one be tested after start of symptoms, how accurate are those results, how much is the test going to cost, etc. And are you really going to go in and get everyone in your family tested at every sign of the flu over the next several months? I know I won't.
My plan, which I have researched and feel confident in, is to focus on boosting everyone's immune systems so we are more prone toward health than disease. I am also not concerned with suffering deaths from the flu, and I have already had one child have pneumonia as a complication from catching whooping cough two years ago (he was under 1 year at the time), so I guess I am not as prone to worry as we have had pretty much "worse case" scenarios over here related to common illnesses. Complications mean hospital, which means medicines and then you come out of it eventually.
I will have on hand ingredients for a weekly soup of miso, veggies and immune-boosting mushrooms, codonopsis and astragalus root. (based on Aviva Jill Romm's recipe from one of her books). At the first sign of flu symptoms, I have homeopathic Oscillococcinum to help reduce the severity and duration of the flu symptoms, as well as calming herbs and ones specifically to address the lungs and nourishing teas. Garlic lemonade helps, too.
As for other homeopaths for flus, I found this info. interesting regarding homeopaths and the 1918 flu epidemic (link
I side with the NVIC and Barbara Loe Fisher that there is no evidence at this time to suggest there is in reality an imminent epidemic on the horizon that would be any worse than any other flu season we've had in most recent years. Cytokine storms are not even proven to accompany all cases of the swine flu. As Wikipedia states:"Recent reports of high mortality among healthy young adults in the 2009 swine flu outbreak has led to speculation that cytokine storms could be responsible for these deaths. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have indicated that symptoms reported from this strain so far are similar to those of normal seasonal flu, with the CDC stating that there is "insufficient information to date about clinical complications of this variant of swine-origin influenza A (H1N1) virus infection."
(Bolding is mine)
Because of the lack of solid evidence that Sambucol and black elderberry extract preparations like it are linked to cytokine storms, I am taking the chance of using it during the flu season. There is more evidence in support of it for differing strains of flu that against it. (From Sambucol's site