If You Have A History Of Allergic Reactions To Food Pets Or Other Environmental Triggers
The CDC says that a history of allergic reactions, even severe reactions, to food, pets, venom, latex, or other environmental triggers is not a contraindication to getting a COVID-19 vaccine. A contraindication is issued when a vaccine may greatly increase a persons risks of adverse effects due to an existing condition.
This means you can get a COVID-19 vaccine if you have a history of allergies to these things, although of course you should ask your doctor if you have any specific concerns or questions.
Individuals with common allergies like those to foods, medications, environmental factors, venom, and latex are no more likely to have an anaphylactic reaction than the general public, says Robyn J. Kreiner, MD, a board-certified allergist and immunologist at Strauss Allergy & Asthma in Long Island, New York.
What Happens After A Case Of Anaphylaxis Is Identified Following Vaccination
Anaphylaxis following vaccine administration must be reported to local public health authorities.
Provincial/territorial public health authorities will then remove all personal identifying information and forward reports to the Public Health Agency of Canada as part of the national vaccine surveillance program.
How Is The Safety Of Flu Vaccines Monitored
CDC and the Food and Drug Administration closely monitor the safety of vaccines approved for use in the United States. CDC uses two primary systems to monitor the safety of flu vaccines:
People with egg allergies can receive any licensed, recommended age-appropriate influenza vaccine that is otherwise appropriate. People who have a history of severe egg allergy should be vaccinated in a medical setting, supervised by a health care provider who is able to recognize and manage severe allergic reactions. Two completely egg-free flu vaccine options are available: quadrivalent recombinant vaccine and quadrivalent cell-based vaccine.
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Can Severe Problems Occur
Life-threatening allergic reactions to flu shots are very rare. Signs of serious allergic reaction can include breathing problems, hoarseness or wheezing, hives, paleness, weakness, a fast heartbeat, or dizziness. If they do occur, it is usually within a few minutes to a few hours after receiving the shot. These reactions can occur among persons who are allergic to something that is in the vaccine, such as egg protein or other ingredients. While severe reactions are uncommon, you should let your doctor, nurse, clinic, or pharmacist know if you have a history of allergy or severe reaction to influenza vaccine or any part of flu vaccine.
There is a small possibility that flu vaccine could be associated with Guillain-Barré syndrome, generally no more than 1 or 2 cases per million people vaccinated. This is much lower than the risk of severe complications from flu, which can be prevented by flu vaccine.
Older Adults Including Long
There are no contraindications to the administration of epinephrine for the treatment of anaphylaxis. Although adverse cardiac events, such as myocardial infarction or acute coronary syndrome, have been reported in some patients who received epinephrine for treatment of anaphylaxis , epinephrine is the first-line treatment for anaphylaxis. It is important that locations providing vaccination to older adults, including long-term care facility residents, have staff members available who are able to recognize the signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis. This will help not only to ensure appropriate and prompt treatment for patients with anaphylaxis, but also to avoid unnecessary epinephrine administration to patients who do not have anaphylaxis.
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Signs And Symptoms Of Anaphylaxis
In anaphylaxis, signs and symptoms onset suddenly and progress rapidly over several minutes and involves two or more body systems. The most frequently involved systems are skin , respiratory and less often cardiovascular and gastrointestinal . Up to 15% of cases may also manifest central nervous system changes of uneasiness, altered mental status, dizziness, or confusion. Features of severe anaphylaxis include obstructive swelling of the upper airway, marked bronchospasm and hypotension. Hypotension can progress to cause shock and collapse.
Table 2: Signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis
|Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain|
|CNS Central nervous system|
Reproduced with permission from: Cheng A Canadian Paediatric Society, Acute Care Committee. Emergency treatment of anaphylaxis in infants and children. Paediatr Child Health 2011 16:35-40. Reaffirmed February 2018.
Can You Get Vaccinated Against Covid
While about 10% of the population has reported a penicillin allergy, less than 1 in 10 of those people are truly allergic. About 80% of those who were once allergic to penicillin lose their sensitivity to it after 10 years. Dr. Lang says that you can still get vaccinated even if youre allergic to penicillin. Since December of 2020, more than 390 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been given in the United States. And the CDC says the vaccines are safe and effective. If youre not sure about what you should do, talk to your provider.
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When Is The Ideal Time To Get The Flu Vaccine
The influenza vaccine season in Colorado is variable. It has been known to occur as early as August and as late as May. It takes about two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against influenza. To ensure that as many people as possible are protected before the flu season begins, the CDC recommends that influenza vaccination begins as soon as the vaccine becomes available, even as early as August, and continues throughout the flu season. Flu activity usually peaks in January or February in the United States and can last as late as May. As long as the flu season isnt over, its not too late to get vaccinated.
How Anaphylaxis Should Be Managed
Steps for basic management of anaphylaxis in a community setting:
Death can occur within minutes. Rapid intervention, including administration of Epinephrine, is extremely important. Steps 1 to 4 should be done immediately and simultaneously.
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What About People Who Get A Seasonal Flu Vaccine And Still Get Sick With Flu Symptoms
There are several reasons why someone might get flu symptoms, even after they have been vaccinated against flu.
Have Any Of The Covid
The wide use of messenger RNA vaccines is new with COVID-19. Examples include the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, which use mRNA technology. Were still learning about these vaccines, even though the technology has been in development for at least 10 years. Based on a group of people who received the vaccine in December 2020, it looks like there might be as many as 11 serious reactions for every 1 million doses of vaccine given. The CDC has guidelines to follow if you have an allergic reaction after your COVID-19 vaccine.
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What Should I Know About The 2021
For starters, its important to know that its highly recommended that you get vaccinated against the flu even though last years flu season was mild, thanks, in large part, to many people masking, staying indoors, and taking other preventive measures to avoid the spread of COVID-19.
A minimal flu season last year doesnt mean were in the clear this year. In fact, weve already seen flu outbreaks this flu season, such as the massive outbreak at the University of Michigan campus. Dr. Agarwal says theres a possibility that outbreaks will continue throughout the flu season as people loosen up on illness-reducing behaviors like wearing face masks. And its important to remember that some people do end up with complications from the flu.
Flu viruses are always changing, so flu vaccine formulas are reviewed every year to best protect people against the viruses that are predicted to cause the most illness, according to the CDC. All of the vaccines available for the 2021-2022 flu season, whether theyre via nasal or needle administration, protect against the same four flu viruses circulating heavily right now.
According to the CDC, one vaccine isnt any better than the other, but if you have any questions about whether one might be best for you, then its always safest to talk to your doctor.
National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, established by the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 , is a no-fault system in which persons thought to have experienced an injury or to have died as a result of administration of a covered vaccine can seek compensation. The program became operational on October 1, 1988, and is intended as an alternative to civil litigation under the traditional tort system in that negligence need not be proven. Claims arising from covered vaccines must first be adjudicated through the program before civil litigation can be pursued.
The program relies on the Vaccine Injury Table, which lists the vaccines covered by the program and the injuries , disabilities, illnesses, and conditions for which compensation might be awarded. The table defines the time during which the first symptom or substantial aggravation of an injury must appear after vaccination to be eligible. Successful claimants receive a legal presumption of causation if a condition listed in the table is proven, thus avoiding the need to prove actual causation in an individual case. Claimants also can prevail for conditions not listed in the reportable events table if they prove causation for covered vaccines. Additional information is available from the Health Resources and Services Administration or by telephone at 800-338-2382. Persons who would like to file a claim for vaccine injury should contact the U.S. Court of Federal Claims .
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How To Treat Flu Vaccine Side Effects If Youre Really Struggling
Although side effects shouldnt last long, theres no shame in wanting to minimize your pain. To deal with any aches or a fever, you can try an OTC pain reliever such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, according to the Mayo Clinic. If your arm is really sore, consider icing it to help with inflammation. Getting plenty of sleep, loading up on water, and generally trying to take it easy until you feel a bit better is always a good idea, too.
And if you have any questions about the flu vaccineif and when you should get your flu shot or nasal spray vaccine, if you should be worried about side effects, concerns about allergies, or anything elsedont hesitate to talk it over with a health care professional. Theyre there to help you make the process as seamless as possible.
Additional reporting by Korin Miller
But Events Still Rare And Nonfatal And Benefits Outweigh Risks Officials Say
byMolly Walker, Associate Editor, MedPage Today January 6, 2021
While rare, the rate of anaphylaxis following COVID-19 mRNA vaccines appeared about 10 times that documented for flu shots, CDC officials said on Wednesday.
Overall, 21 cases of anaphylaxis following COVID vaccination were reported out of about 1.9 million doses given as of Dec. 23, according to an early Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report release. That amounts to 11.1 cases per million versus an estimated 1.3 cases per million following inactivated influenza vaccine, agency officials said on a call with the media.
They noted that, as of now, 29 confirmed cases of anaphylaxis are reported with the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines. In addition, the officials said, the MMWR report from Dec. 14-23 focuses on the Pfizer vaccine, since the Moderna vaccine was not available until Dec. 21. Still, there is not enough data to see a difference in risk between vaccines.
No deaths from anaphylaxis have been seen to date.
Nancy Messonnier, MD, director of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, emphasized that these events were rare and that the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination outweighed the risks. Moreover, comparing these to the numbers for flu “misses the point” when there are over 2,000 deaths from COVID-19 every day in the U.S.
Also, Messonnier briefly addressed reports of healthcare workers electing not to get vaccinated, saying she was “definitely concerned” about it.
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How Common Are Allergic Reactions Including Anaphylaxis To The Covid
The answer is reassuring: Allergic reactions are not common and anaphylactic reactions are very rare. Anaphylaxis to the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines, which include those from Moderna and Pfizer, is estimated to occur in 2.5 to 11.1 cases per 1 million doses, mostly in people with a history of allergy, according to a March 2021 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association .
The researchers investigated allergic reactions after more than 60,000 mRNA COVID-19 vaccine administrations. They found that acute allergic reactions were reported in 1,365 individuals overall . Allergic reactions occurred slightly more frequently with Moderna vaccine patients than Pfizer vaccine patients .
People with anaphylaxis had an average age of 41 and 94 percent were female. More than 60 percent had an allergy history and 31 percent had an anaphylaxis history. The average time to anaphylaxis onset was 17 minutes. One patient was admitted to intensive care, 56 percent received epinephrine importantly and all recovered.
The CDC also of the data they gathered from people who received a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine between December 14 and 23, 2020. There were 21 cases of anaphylaxis and 83 cases of non-anaphylaxis allergic reaction after administration of 1,893,360 first doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.
Although I Am Not Allergic To Egg I Developed A Generalized Reaction To The Flu Vaccine Last Year And Therefore Should Not Receive Any More Flu Vaccinations
An allergy to egg must be distinguished from an allergy to the influenza vaccine. A prior severe allergic reaction to the influenza vaccine, regardless of the components suspected to be responsible for the reaction, is a contraindication to receiving a future influenza vaccine. An evaluation by an allergist is recommended, as some flu vaccine components triggering reactions are also present in other vaccines and can be identified.
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How To Report A Reaction
It is important to report negative reactions to a vaccination. This gives us a better understanding of the safety of vaccines.
You can report vaccine reactions to your state or territory health service.
Alternatively you can report a problem or side effect directly to the Therapeutic Goods Administration online or over the phone.
For email, fax and post use the National Adverse Event Following Immunisation reporting form.
If Youve Had A Severe Allergic Reaction To The Flu Vaccine
You should not get a flu shot if the flu vaccine itself ever caused you to have a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis, says Dr. Gordon. Again, this can happen whether you have an allergy to eggs or not.
Because anaphylaxis progresses quickly and can be fatal, the risk of a repeat episode from getting the vaccine far outweighs your risk of getting the flu.
Its important to understand the risks that come with any vaccine, but you can rest easy knowing that just 1.35 out of one million people have experienced one of these severe allergic reactions to the flu vaccine.
The other piece of good news is that among this small population, the anaphylaxis was most often triggered by an allergy to one of the other vaccine components, not to the egg.
The bottom line is, there is no reason for someone with a suspected egg allergy to not get the flu vaccine, says Dr. Lang.
The best thing you can do to put yourself in a safe situation is to inform the medical professional administering your flu shot of your allergies ahead of time.
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