Information From Recent Studies Has Led Both The Cdc And The American Academy Of Pediatrics To Release New Guidelines Regarding Administration Of The Flu Vaccine In Egg Allergic Patients
These guidelines stress that the risks of vaccinating egg allergic patients with the influenza vaccine are less high than the risks of not vaccinating. This is true even for patients with a history of anaphylaxis to egg. All egg allergic patients should receive influenza vaccine in a setting where anaphylaxis can be recognized and treated and should be observed for 30 minutes after vaccination. In all egg allergic patients, we advise yearly reevaluation of their egg allergy by history and skin testing, which can be accomplished during the same office visit as their yearly influenza vaccination visit.
Flu Vaccine For People With Long
The flu vaccine is offered free on the NHS to anyone with a serious long-term health condition, including:
- a learning disability
- problems with your spleen, for example, sickle cell disease, or if you have had your spleen removed
- a weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or taking medicines such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
Talk to your doctor if you have a long-term condition that is not in one of these groups. They should offer you the flu vaccine if they think you’re at risk of serious problems if you get flu.
Is It Seasonal Influenza Allergies Or Covid
As we enter the start of a new influenza season amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, you may find yourself wondering what your symptoms mean when youre feeling under the weather.
Many symptoms of the flu, allergies and COVID-19 are similar, and it can be very difficult to distinguish the differences between them, explains Lucy OBrien, DO, a board-certified family medicine physician on the Medical Staff at Southwest General. However, one key difference between the three is the shortness of breath that comes with COVID-19.
Heres a look at the symptoms of each along with some tips on prevention:
You May Like: Should Someone With Autoimmune Disease Get A Flu Shot
Global Recommendation Of Influenza Vaccination In Children
The WHO strongly recommends influenza vaccination for all children older than 6 months, particularly in high-risk priority groups, such as pregnant women, children aged 6-59 months, the elderly, individuals with specific chronic medical conditions , and health care workers . The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices updated its recommendations for influenza vaccination on August 15, 2014 . The general recommendations for healthy children are as follows: routine annual influenza vaccination is recommended for all persons aged 6 months who do not have contraindications vaccination optimally should occur before onset of influenza activity in the community vaccination should be offered as long as influenza viruses are circulating and children aged 6 months through 8 years who require 2 doses should receive their first dose as soon as possible after the vaccine becomes available and the second dose 4 weeks later .
The American Academy of Pediatrics and the US CDC also recommend annual seasonal influenza vaccination for all people 6 months and older with rare exceptions .
The Korean Committee on Infectious Disease and the CDC guidelines include recommendations that are similar to those of the WHO, the AAP, and the US CDC .
Who Should Avoid The Flu Vaccine
The flu vaccine is very effective, but it isnt right for everyone.
Dont get the vaccine if youve had a severe allergic reaction to any ingredient it contains, including egg protein.
You also should avoid the flu vaccine if youve had Guillain-Barré syndrome. In 1976, a swine flu vaccine was linked to an increased risk for Guillain-Barré, which causes the immune system to attack and damage the protective coating around nerve cells.
Guillain-Barré syndrome causes extreme weakness and tingling in the limbs, known as severe peripheral neuropathy. It can be life-threatening in rare cases.
Theres no clear link between the current flu vaccine and Guillain-Barré. If any risk exists, its very small, affecting about 1 out of every 1 million people vaccinated.
The vaccine also isnt recommended for babies under 6 months old because it hasnt been proven safe in infants.
Talk to your doctor if you have a weakened immune system, or if you take medicine to suppress your immune system. You may not respond as well to the vaccine.
If youre sick, you might want to put off the flu shot until you feel better.
You May Like: What Are The Ingredients In A Flu Vaccine
Can I Get A Flu Vaccine If I Am Allergic To Eggs
Because production of the flu vaccine involves eggs, there is some concern regarding the vaccine int hose with egg allergies. The CDCs recommendations are that people with egg allergies whose only symptoms are hives may receive any licensed flu vaccine. People with other egg allergy reactions can receive a flu vaccine in a medical setting. When they receive the flu vaccine, they should be supervised by a health care provider that can identify and respond appropriately to severe allergic conditions. If you have an egg allergy, you should receive your flu vaccine in a hospital, clinic, state or city health department, or certified physicians office if your egg allergy has resulted in any of the following: Angioedema Respiratory distress Lightheadedness Recurrent emesis Treatment with epinephrine Emergency medical intervention As with other individuals, anyone with an egg allergy should ensure the flu vaccine they receive is approved for their age and health. People with egg allergies do not have to wait 30 minutes after receiving the vaccine.
Cold And Flu Supports For Bc Public Service Employees
If you work for the BC Public Service and your worksite is registered, you can receive the annual influenza vaccine at your worksite.
Contractors who work with BC Public Service employees are also eligible to receive the influenza vaccine. The worksite program is provided for your convenience and there’s no cost to you.
Clinics will be taking place from late October to December.
Read Also: How Long Are Flu Symptoms Contagious
Everyone 6 Months And Older Should Get The Flu Shot
The flu shot is your best defence against the flu. The flu shot is recommended for everyone 6 months of age and older.
It can save lives by:
- protecting you, if you’re exposed to the virus
- preventing you from getting very sick
- protecting people close to you:
- because you’re less likely to spread the virus
- who are at higher risk of serious flu complications if they get the flu
The flu shot wont protect you against COVID-19.
Do You Have A Cold The Flu Or Allergies
The above table details the symptom differences between all three conditions.
The common symptoms of a cold, flu and allergies are a stuffy or a runny nose, sneezing, a sore throat, a cough, a headache, or even fatigue. Two differing symptoms are a fever or aches/pain, these would not be caused by allergies, but could be due to a cold or the flu. Symptoms of the flu are often more severe than a cold.
While the symptoms are similar, the origin of the conditions are different. A cold and the flu are both caused by different viruses, whereas allergies are caused by your immune system reacting to a trigger. Common inhalant allergy triggers are pollen, dust, mold, pet dander.
See related: Is it a cold? Or is it Allergies?
You May Like: When To Get Flu Shot During Pregnancy
The Flu Shot Is Effective
The effectiveness of the vaccine varies from season to season. It depends on:
- how well the vaccine matches with the circulating flu viruses
- the health and age of the person getting the flu shot
The viruses circulating in the population can sometimes change during the time it takes to produce a vaccine. When this happens during the flu season, the flu shot may not work as well as expected.
It’s also important to remember that the flu shot protects against several different flu viruses each season. The seasonal flu shot can still provide protection against the remaining 2 or 3 viruses, even when theres:
- a less-than-ideal match
- lower effectiveness against one virus
If you do get the flu, the flu shot may reduce the severity of flu-related complications.
Getting your flu shot is still the most effective way to protect yourself against the flu and flu-related complications.
Side Effects Of The Flu Shot Are Nothing Compared With Flu Sickness
The potential risks of a severe case of influenza far outweigh any very limited risk of side effects , which are typically mild, she says.
Some people equate the flu with having a bad cold. While the flu and the common cold have some symptoms in common, the flu can knock people flat for a few days to as long as two weeks, and it can also have far more dire consequences.
Some people who get the flu will develop complications such as pneumonia, inflammation of the heart , inflammation of the brain , or respiratory failure, which can lead to hospitalization and death, notes the CDC.
Even if youve been vaccinated and still get the flu, you are less likely to die, be hospitalized, or be admitted to the ICU, Horney says.
While incidence of the flu was unusually low last year, thanks to COVID-19 precautions like mandatory masking and stay-at-home orders, the CDC estimates that the 20192020 flu season led to some 400,000 hospitalizations and 22,000 flu deaths.
And we could potentially see numbers like that again this year. As people return to offices and classrooms, and COVID-19 vaccinations lead to more mask-free gatherings, doctors are expecting a major uptick in flu cases this fall and winter.
Indeed, reduced population immunity could result in an early, and possibly severe, flu season, cautions the CDC.
Recommended Reading: Kaiser Permanente Flu Shots Folsom Ca
Allergic Reactions To The Flu Vaccine
It’s very rare for anyone to have a serious allergic reaction to the flu vaccine. If this does happen, it usually happens within minutes.
The person who vaccinates you will be trained to deal with allergic reactions and treat them immediately.
Anyone can report a suspected side effect of a vaccine through the Yellow Card Scheme.
Are The Ingredients Safe
The various ingredients in flu shots work together to ensure that the vaccine is safe and effective. The specific ingredients vary between vaccines.
The ingredients may include:
- inactivated flu viruses that cannot cause flu
- chemicals that boost the bodys response to the vaccine, such as aluminum salts
- traces of preservatives to prevent contamination, such as formaldehyde and thimerosal
- stabilizers, such as gelatin
- egg proteins left over from the production process, as manufacturers grow the viruses in chicken eggs
- antibiotics to prevent bacterial growth
Flu shots have a good safety record, and many scientific studies have shown that these ingredients, and their proportions, are safe for most people. However, people with egg allergies should speak to a doctor before getting a flu shot.
Read Also: Kroger Flu Shot Gift Card
Do I Need To Get The Flu Vaccine Every Year
The flu vaccine is needed every year for two reasons.
The first is that your bodys immune response to influenza decreases over time. Receiving the vaccine every year helps you have continued protection.
The second reason is that the influenza virus is constantly changing. This means that the viruses that were prevalent in the previous flu season may not be in the upcoming season.
The flu vaccine is updated every year to include protection against the influenza viruses most likely to circulate in the upcoming flu season. A seasonal flu shot is the most effective protection.
recommends that children over 6 months of age receive the flu vaccine. Children under 6 months old are too young to receive the vaccine.
Flu vaccine side effects in babies are similar to those in adults. They may include:
- low-grade fever
- muscle aches
- soreness at the injection site
Some children between ages 6 months and 8 years may need two doses. Ask your childs doctor how many doses your child needs.
Pregnant women should get the flu vaccine every year. Changes in your immune system during pregnancy lead to an increased risk of severe illness or hospitalization due to influenza.
Both the and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommend pregnant women get the seasonal flu shot in any trimester of pregnancy.
While additional studies need to be completed to investigate this concern, both the
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.
Don’t Miss: Are Flu Shots The Same Everywhere
Hospitals Brace For An Onslaught This Winter From Flu As Well As Covid
“It could be really bad and it could be really bad at a time when there’s still quite a bit of COVID-19 filling up our hospitals,” he says.
Getting the flu shot remains the single most powerful action a person can take to fend off the days- or weeks-long, wracking muscle aches, fever and sometimes deadly respiratory infection that is influenza.
“Two reasons make getting vaccinated against the flu the wise choice,” says Dr. William Schaffner, medical director of the National Foundation of Infectious Diseases. “First, it’s been proven year after year that you’re in better shape to fight off the flu if you get the vaccine. Second, by getting vaccinated against the flu, you help protect the people around you.”
Here’s a guide to getting yourself vaccinated against the potentially fatal virus.
I heard that the flu essentially disappeared last year. Do I really need a flu shot this year?
Yes. Last year saw a record-low number of flu cases, likely thanks to widespread mask wearing, remote work and school, and physical distancing. But this year, experts fear that the reopening of schools, decreased adherence to pandemic precautions and surging delta variant infections could create a double whammy: a very serious flu and COVID-19 season. Already, cases of RSV, yet another serious respiratory virus in children, are spiking. “This suggests that flu will be back ,” says L.J Tan, executive director of the Immunization Action Coalition.
Who should get a flu shot?
Why not now?
Plus Theres Hope That The 2021 Flu Shot Will Outdo Its Predecessors
Since there are different flu viruses out there , the vaccine is reviewed and changed from year to year. The World Health Organization has already selected what components should be a part of the 2021 to 2022 vaccine to best protect against next seasons soon-to-be circulating viruses, too. But again, there’s no way yet to accurately predict how bad this coming year’s flu will be as the virus is always changing.
FYI: The flu shot can’t actually give you the flu.
Another thing to note? Talk of the flu shots many side effects is greatly exaggerated. The flu shot cant actually give you the flu, and while there are some possible side effects, Dr. Adalja says most are rare.
If youre particularly wary of needles, you may prefer the nasal influenza spray over an injection, says Soma Mandal, MD, a board-certified internist at Summit Medical Group in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey. Potential nasal spray side effects include runny nose, wheezing, headache, vomiting, muscle aches, fever, sore throat, and cough.
Not everyone should get the nasal flu spray due to factors like age and underlying health conditions, though, so talk to your doctor to determine if its the best option for you, she says.
Read Also: Z Pack For The Flu
People With Health Conditions
These conditions can affect a person’s immune system and can make it harder to fight off infections, such as:
- cancer and other immune compromising conditions
- kidney disease
- neurological or neurodevelopmental conditions
- children up to 18 years of age undergoing treatment for long periods with acetylsalicylic acid
Getting the flu can also worsen the symptoms associated with some of these health conditions.
Should You Get A Flu Shot If You Have An Egg Allergy
For many years, flu shots were not recommended for people with egg allergies. The vaccine is grown in chicken eggs and it was thought that this could cause a serious allergic reaction in people with egg allergies. For this reason, flu shots were avoided by people with egg allergies. However, current research and data show that the risk of this type of reaction, even in people with significant egg allergies, is extremely low.
Also Check: Arm And Shoulder Pain After Flu Shot
Myth #: The Flu Vaccine Isn’t Safe For Pregnant Women
Studies show flu vaccines are safe for women in any stage of pregnancy, the CDC says. There are several reasons why it’s important for pregnant women to get a flu shot, Schaffner said.
“Pregnant women, when they get influenza, have a tendency to get a more severe disease,” and are at increased risk for complications and hospitalization from the disease, Schaffner said.
In addition, flu vaccination in pregnancy helps to protect the baby against flu during the first six months of life, when the baby is too young to receive a flu shot, Schaffner said. The mother “passes that protection on to her newborn baby,” Schaffner said.