Friday, September 29, 2023

Can I Take Antihistamine After Flu Shot

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Feature Article: Medications And Covid

Fast Flu Tips | After the Flu Shot

Many people take regular medications, so as they prepare to get the COVID-19 vaccine, they wonder whether their medications will interfere with the vaccine or vice versa. In this article, we will discuss why some medications may be expected to alter the response to the vaccine and others would not. However, given the almost 40 different categories of medications and the thousands of medicinal products distributed, this article will not exhaustively address the topic. With this in mind, individuals should always consider three important points:

  • Never stop taking a medication prescribed by a healthcare provider without checking whether it is safe to do so.
  • Every medication prescription, over the counter, illicit, or so-called natural remedy has some effect on your body.
  • If you have a question about a medication you are taking, talk to your doctor as they know your medical history and current medical situation, so they will be in the best position to help assess potential risks and benefits related to the medication itself or its interaction with something else, such as a vaccine.
  • Four types of medications have been commonly discussed related to COVID-19 vaccinations, so we will start by addressing these:

    • Antipyretics
    • Antihistamines

    Nih Is Committed To More Flu Vaccine Research

    William Schaffner, MD, an infectious disease specialist and a professor of preventive medicine and health policy at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tennessee, sees the study results as building on evidence indicating that the microbiome the trillions of microbes that live in the gastrointestinal tract has a pervasive effect on our health.

    Taking antibiotics clearly had a measurable reduction in the immune response, but we dont know whether its clinically significant yet, says Dr. Schaffner, who was not involved in the study. “It could be that if youre taking antibiotics it might not be a good time to get a flu vaccine, but were not quite there yet in terms of research.

    He also points out that the antibiotic combination used in this investigation was not one seen in common practice.

    This antibiotic cocktail is a very unusual mix of ingredients, says Schaffner. It seems specifically designed to kill off as many gut bacteria as possible.

    For future research, Schaffner would like to see a larger study population and an antibiotic combination used in standard treatment.

    Significantly more work needs to be done to truly understand the real impact of the microbiome on influenza, says Embry.

    Embry adds that the NIH will continue to support research exploring factors that may improve human immune response to influenza vaccines.

    Plan And Prepare For Your Covid

    • Find out how to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
    • Get vaccinated even if you have already had COVID-19.
    • If you are getting a COVID-19 vaccine that requires two doses, be sure to schedule an appointment for your second shot.
    • Get a COVID-19 vaccine and any other recommended vaccines, including a flu vaccine, at the same visit.

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    Tips For Treating Side Effects From The Vaccine

    Beyond taking medication, there are some home remedies that can help you cope with the side effects. Applying a cool, wet cloth to the spot on your arm where the shot was given can help with some of the pain, according to the CDC. Drinking lots of fluids is wise if you’re feverish, and wearing lightweight clothing can also keep you comfortable.

    After your vaccine, you’re supposed to wait for 15 minutes before leaving the place where you got vaccinated to be observed for reactions or serious side effects.

    According to the CDC, the side effects of the Covid vaccine should go away in a few days. That said, in some cases, the side effects can interfere with your ability to go about your daily life, so you may want to plan accordingly.

    Also good to know: More people experience side effects from the second of the two doses. That’s because the first dose triggers an immune response, and the second dose “boosts” it.

    What Are The Benefits To The Covid

    How to get your body ready for the COVID

    COVID-19 can be a very serious illness. The vaccines have been shown to be highly effective in preventing the virus. They allow your body to develop immunity to the virus without getting sick. If someone who is vaccinated does get diagnosed with COVID-19, they are much less likely to experience severe illness.

    It is also believed that getting vaccinated protects people around you as well. Getting sick with COVID-19 provides a level of immunity, but how long is unknown. And the illness brings risk of severe symptoms or death. Thus, developing immunity through vaccination is the safest choice.

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    But cold and flu meds arent the only ones that can make you wake up in a cold sweat, says Sowa. One common dream-altering antihistamine, diphenhydramine, is not only used in cold and flu meds but also in drugs that treat allergies, motion sickness, insomnia, and Parkinsons disease.

    Meanwhile, other meds that dont have any antihistamines in them can have similaror potentially even strongereffects. There are numerous drugs that are linked to vivid nightmares, says Sowa. I most commonly see strange dreams as a side effect of anti-depressants and smoking-cessation medications, but nightmares are linked to everything from pain medications to blood pressure agents.

    Often, as is the case with the sleep aids Ambien and melatonin, thats because they can temporarily affect receptors in your brain and alter your brains levels of neurotransmitters, such as dopamine, says Stuart J. Finkelstein, M.D., an addiction medicine specialist in California. Not everyone gets these responses, as many times it depends on the dosage and other medications they may be taking, he says. If you dont get them, count yourself lucky.

    Are Certain People More At Risk When Combining Alcohol And The Flu Shot Or Flu Medications

    Alcohol can have negative effects on anyone, but certain groups of people can experience them more intensely. If you have certain medical conditions or are especially sensitive to alcohol, the flu shot, flu medications, or the flu itself, alcohol could intensify the effects and make you feel worse.

    Studies show that women are more sensitive to alcohol compared to men: The same amount of alcohol can cause a higher blood alcohol level in women than in men. This can lead to a higher risk for alcohol-related complications, such as liver, heart, or pancreatic damage.

    Older adults are also more vulnerable to the effects of alcohol. As we age, the body doesnt break down alcohol as well. This can cause it to stay in the body longer. Older adults also tend to be on more medications. So there may be a higher chance of potentially serious medication interactions with alcohol.

    People with certain medical conditions may be at higher risk for serious side effects when drinking alcohol. These include mental health conditions , diabetes, and high blood pressure. Side effects may include low blood sugar, abnormal heartbeats, and worsened depression or anxiety. Specific side effects vary based on the medical condition.

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    Is It Okay For Pregnant Women To Get Vaccinated Against Covid

    Yes. CDC recommends COVID-19 vaccination for women who are pregnant, recently pregnant , who are trying to become pregnant, and/or who might become pregnant in the future. Its beneficial to both mother and baby.

    A recent study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology found that infants born to mothers who received the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine or Moderna vaccine had high levels of protective antibodies. The study shows that antibodies the mother builds from the vaccine cross the placenta and go to the baby. This has the potential of protecting the baby in the first days of life from getting a COVID-19 infection.

    The study also found antibodies can be shared between a mother and a baby through breast milk in lactating women who received the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

    Getting A Flu Shot While Taking Immunosuppressants

    Prevent Flu! Get a Flu Vaccine and Take Preventive Actions

    Robert Burakoff, MD, MPH, is board-certified in gastroentrology. He is the vice chair for ambulatory services for the department of medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, where he is also a professor. He was the founding editor and co-editor in chief of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases.

    People with inflammatory bowel disease may be at an increased risk for complications from the flu . We think of the flu being a common, benign illness, but, in fact, it is far from being a harmless once-a-year problem caused by a virus. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , deaths from the flu vary widely every year because of the variation in flu seasons, but since 1976 death totals have been anywhere between 3,000 and 49,000 a year. Most of the fatalities are in people over the age of 65.

    Immunosuppressive drugs are commonly used to treat IBD, and people taking these types of medications are considered to be at a higher than typical risk for developing complications from the flu. Because IBD is an immune-mediated condition, medications that suppress the immune system are sometimes given as a treatment. This is thought to keep the inflammation from IBD in check. However, this also means that the body is less able to fight off other types of infections, such as those that are caused by bacteria or viruses, including the flu .

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    What About Otc Flu Medications Can I Take These And Drink Alcohol

    Some over-the-counter medications can treat symptoms of the flu but not the flu itself. These medications can help lessen your symptoms while your body is fighting off the infection. Some of these medications can have serious interactions with alcohol when taken together.

    Its best to stay away from alcohol while taking any of these medications:

    Discomfort From The Vaccine

    If you get this COVID vaccine side effect, Webb says to use an antihistamine like Benadryl and if you’re experiencing pain, he suggests Tylenol. “If you’re having other discomforts, cool compresses are very helpful, and then of course topical steroids also help depress the swelling and local redness,” he told Idaho 6 News.

    One patient named Kimberly Cornmesser told the news outlet that she got “COVID arm” about 48 hours after her second Moderna dose. “It didn’t go away for at least a week. I thought it was a little weird, but I kind of brushed it off until it started to get progressively worse,” she said.

    Cornmesser said she was “most surprised by the itching,” which she was able to minimize with ice.

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    Don’t Throw Away Your Masks

    Experts don’t yet know exactly how much safer the COVID-19 booster makes us against the virus. One study found that people who got a single-shot Johnson& Johnson COVID vaccine experienced a 35-fold increase in antibodies after receiving a Pfizer booster shot, and a 76-fold increase in antibodies after a Moderna booster. And the initial two-dose regimen remains extremely effective in preventing COVID-related hospitalizations and death.

    But getting a booster doesn’t mean it’s time to throw away your masks and act like the pandemic is over. “Getting an additional dose of a vaccine does not make you Superman,”Celine Gounder, MD, a clinical assistant professor of medicine at NYU Langone Health, told HuffPost this week.

    It’s important to continue with best practices, like mask-wearing and social distancing in public, and washing your hands regularly. “It’s still the same precautions, but the fact is that you have just improved your immunity,”Charlotte Baker, DrPH, MPH, assistant professor of epidemiology at Virginia Tech, told NPR last week. “So if you’re somebody who is not really high risk, you can feel a little bit better about your chances of contracting COVID.”

    There Are Other Ways To Reduce Your Post

    The ABC

    Medication isn’t the only way you can relieve your post-vaccination side effects, however. According to the CDC, if you want to reduce pain and discomfort where you received the shot, you can “apply a clean, cool, wet washcloth over the area.” The agency also suggests you use or exercise your arm to help relieve any pain. If you have a fever after your vaccination, the CDC recommends drinking plenty of fluids and dressing lightly to reduce discomfort from your fever. And for more on vaccine preparation, Doctors Say Do These 2 Things the Morning of Your Vaccine Appointment.

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    Cdc Is Monitoring Reports Of Severe Allergic Reactions

    If someone has a severe allergic reaction after getting vaccinated, their vaccination provider will send a report to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System .external icon VAERS is a national system that collects reports from healthcare professionals, vaccine manufacturers, and the public about adverse events that happen after vaccination. Reports of adverse events that are unexpected, appear to happen more often than expected, or have unusual patterns are followed up with specific studies.

    Dr Fauci Just Said Don’t Take This Medication With The Covid Vaccine

    Getting a COVID-19 vaccine appointment can feel like winning the lottery these days. And if you’re lucky enough to score one, chances are you want to do everything in your power to make sure things go as smoothly as possible. You’ve probably heard in recent weeks that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other medical professionals have urged Americans to hold off on doing one thing in particular before getting vaccinatedtaking pain relievers like Advil or Tylenol. But now, in a new interview with CBSN, Anthony Fauci, MD, is weighing in on the topicand he’s advising what medication to avoid taking and what’s safe to take with your COVID vaccine. Read on to find out his advice, and for more on what to hold off on both pre- and post-shot, check out The CDC Says Dont Do This Within 2 Weeks of Your COVID Vaccine.

    Fauci said you shouldn’t take any medication that “suppresses an immunological response.”

    During a Feb. 25 interview with CBSN as part of their A Shot of Hope: Vaccine Questions Answered special, a vaccine administrator in New Jersey wrote in to ask Fauci, “Patients often ask me whether they should be taking pain relievers either before or after the vaccine shot. I’ve heard mixed advice. What do you say?”

    Fauci added, however, that there is one exception: “if you’re taking it for an underlying disease.” And for a vaccine that may be offering you some immunity already, check out This Other Vaccine Could Be Protecting You From COVID, Study Says.

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    And if you do get themand they are really bothering youyou should definitely talk to your doc. Continuing medications with unpleasant side effects is a matter of risk versus benefit, says Sowa. If the medication is helping your cold symptoms but causing nightmares and sleep disturbances, you should ask yourself if its worth it. If its not, your doctor will help you find an alternative treatment.

    Early Recognition Of Anaphylaxis

    Key Facts about Flu Vaccines

    Because anaphylaxis requires immediate treatment, diagnosis is primarily made based on recognition of clinical signs and symptoms. Signs and symptoms in adults and children include:

    • Respiratory: sensation of throat closing or tightness, stridor , hoarseness, respiratory distress , coughing, trouble swallowing/drooling, nasal congestion, rhinorrhea, sneezing
    • Gastrointestinal: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, or cramps
    • Cardiovascular: dizziness fainting tachycardia hypotension pulse difficult to find or weak cyanosis pallor flushing
    • Skin/mucosal: generalized hives widespread redness itching conjunctivitis or swelling of eyes, lips, tongue, mouth, face, or extremities
    • Neurologic: agitation convulsions acute change in mental status sense of impending doom
    • Other: sudden increase in secretions urinary incontinence

    Anaphylaxis should be considered when signs or symptoms are generalized or are serious or life-threatening in nature, even if they involve a single body system .

    If anaphylaxis is suspected, administer epinephrine as soon as possible, contact emergency medical services, and transfer patients to a higher level of medical care. In addition, instruct patients to seek immediate medical care if they develop signs or symptoms of an allergic reaction after their observation period ends and they have left the vaccination location.

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    Homebound People Requiring Home Vaccination Services

    Homebound people who might be at increased risk for anaphylaxis following vaccination should consider whether they could be vaccinated in a setting where medical care is immediately available if they experience anaphylaxis following vaccination. If home vaccination is the only option for these people and, through risk assessment, it is determined that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the potential risk for anaphylaxis, home vaccination providers should ensure they are able to manage anaphylaxis. This includes appropriate screening post-vaccination observation medications and supplies staff qualifications for recognition and treatment of anaphylaxis ability to call for EMS and location in an area where EMS is available.

    Side Effects Of Antihistamines

    Like all medicines, antihistamines can cause side effects.

    Side effects of antihistamines that make you drowsy can include:

    • sleepiness and reduced co-ordination, reaction speed and judgement do not drive or use machinery after taking these antihistamines
    • dry mouth
    • feeling sick
    • drowsiness although this is less common than with older types of antihistamines

    Check the leaflet that comes with your medicine for a full list of possible side effects and advice about when to get medical help.

    If you think your medicine has caused an unwanted side effect, you can report it through the Yellow Card Scheme.

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