Why Is It Important To Receive A Vaccination Against Shingles
About 33% of adults in the U.S. will develop shingles at some point in their lives. Shingles can cause painful blisters, a rash, chills, and fever, among other symptoms. Many people who have shingles later develop PHN, which can cause long-lasting pain that is difficult to treat.
Getting the Shingrix vaccine can help individuals avoid shingles and PHN and help prevent shingles from spreading to vulnerable people.
Is Vaccine Coverage Worse In The 12 States That Haven’t Expanded Their Medicaid Programs Than In Those That Have
Although it may seem that there could be less adult vaccine coverage in states that havent expanded Medicaid, that isnt the case. In fact, all of these states offer some vaccine coverage. Compared to the states that have expanded Medicaid, they dont fall behind due to the variation that still exists in those states.
For context, here are the 12 states that havent expanded Medicaid:
To give you a better idea of the variation among these non-expanded states, here are a few examples of the vaccine coverage they offer for adults:
Alabama Medicaid covers five of the recommended adult vaccines .
Mississippi Medicaid covers all 13 recommended vaccines.
Wyoming Medicaid provides flu shots for all adult members, but other vaccine coverage will depend on the plan you have.
How Are Infections Treated While On Biologics
- Nose or throat infections affect 1 in 10 people
- Chest infections may affect 1 in 100 people
- Cellulitis may affect 1 in 100 people
- Shingles may infect 1 in 100 people.
Always monitor yourself for symptoms that suggest an infection, such as:
- Burning when urinating
- Red, painful, blistered, or swollen skin
- Sweats or chills.
Your doctor may consider temporarily stopping Stelara administration until the infection has resolved or has been treated.
However, in some situations, discontinuing Stelara may not be feasible and may inadvertently result in a longer course of treatment for a particular infection. This is because:
- Biologics, such as Stelara typically have long half-lives and there may be a delay from the time of discontinuation to the time of immune function recovery
- Discontinuing immunosuppressive therapy, such as Stelara might result in immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome. This is a condition caused by the immune system overeating to the previously unrecognized antigens because it was suppressed.
Many doctors just proceed with biologic therapy during an infection and treat the infection with the appropriate medication, for example antibiotics if it is bacterial, or antivirals if it is a viral infection. Corticosteroids may also be administered.
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Will Being Vaccinated Against Flu Pneumonia And Shingles Help Prevent Covid
The short answer is no. But reducing your risk for getting sick with the flu, pneumonia, or shingles which is what these vaccines do makes a lot of sense during the pandemic, Privor-Dumm says.
Lowering your risk for vaccine-preventable diseases will help you avoid doctors offices and hospitals, which will reduce any potential exposure to the coronavirus, Privor-Dumm adds.
Plus, Privor-Dumm says, Preventing serious disease can help keep you out of the hospital at a time when health resources may be needed to treat COVID-19 patients.
Who Should Get Vaccinated This Fall
Really, everyone over 6 months old should get the flu shot, especially because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Although you can still get the flu even after youve been vaccinated knowing youve had it will likely help your healthcare team diagnose you if you develop symptoms that may be shared by COVID-19 and flu, such as:
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How Do I Get The Shingles Vaccination
Once you become eligible for the shingles vaccination, a GP or practice nurse will offer you the vaccine when you attend the surgery for general reasons.
You can have a shingles vaccine at the same time as most other vaccines. But try to leave 7 days between the shingles vaccine and a coronavirus vaccine, so that if you have any side effects you’ll know which vaccine they were from.
If you are worried that you may miss out on the shingles vaccination, contact your GP surgery to arrange an appointment to have the vaccine.
Simultaneous Administration With Other Vaccines
RZV and LZV may be administered concomitantly with other live vaccines given by the parenteral, oral, or intranasal routes. For concomitant parenteral injections, different injection sites and separate needles and syringes should be used.
In general, inactivated vaccines including RZV may be administered concomitantly with, or at any time before or after, other inactivated vaccines or live vaccines protecting against a different disease.
LZV may be given at any time before or after live oral or intranasal vaccines. If two live parenteral vaccines are not administered concomitantly, there should be a period of at least 4 weeks before the second live parenteral vaccine is given.
Concomitant administration of pneumococcal 23-valent polysaccharide vaccine and LZV has not resulted in decreased efficacy and so the two vaccines can be given concomitantly.
For more information, refer to Timing of Vaccine Administration in Part 1.
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How Safe Is Shingrix
studies showed that Shingrix was safe and effective.
There have been concerns about ingredients, such as thimerosal, that may be added to vaccines. Thimerosal is a kind of preservative that contains mercury. Its added then taken out of some vaccines to keep other germs and bacteria from growing. The concern arose when early research connected thimerosal to autism. This link has since been found to be false. Shingrix doesnt contain thimerosal.
Does Medicaid Cover Vaccines For Adults
In addition to the COVID-19 vaccine, the CDC recommends 13 vaccines for adults:
Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis
Measles, mumps, rubella
Meningococcal A, C, W, Y
Haemophilus influenzae type B
Under Medicaid, coverage for these vaccines, and others, depends on the policies of the state you live in. A recent study found that 22 out of 51 state Medicaid programs covered all 13 recommended vaccines.
For those who live outside of those states, there may be free and low-cost vaccine options that can help. Or, if you have coverage but the cost is still too high, a coupon, like those available from GoodRx, may help you save money.
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For Stem Cell Transplant Patients
The CDC and the American Society for Blood & Marrow Transplantation recommend flu shots for all bone marrow, stem cell and cord blood transplant survivors beginning one year post-transplant and continuing every year thereafter. The flu shot is also recommended for others living or working in the household. Although most transplant centers follow the current CDC guidelines regarding flu shots, some recommend flu shots even earlier than one year after the transplant.
For more information about the flu and special considerations for people who have cancer, visit the CDC’s Cancer and Flu page.
Yes But Heres What To Know About Timing All Your Vaccines This Fall
by Michelle Crouch, AARP, September 10, 2021
En español | September and October are big months for flu shots, but this year, it’s also when COVID-19 booster shots could start rolling out. So you may be wondering: Is it OK to get your flu shot and COVID-19 booster at the same time?
Absolutely, health experts say. In fact, many doctors plan to encourage Americans to get both at once.
“It’s two for the price of one, says Ranit Mishori, M.D., a professor of family medicine at Georgetown University School of Medicine. Get one in each arm. It’s an efficient and effective way to make sure you’re protected.” Mishori notes that the same goes for those who are immunocompromised and might want to time their third dose to their flu shot.
It’s important for older adults to get both shots this year because COVID-19 cases are surging, fueled by the spread of the more contagious delta variant, just as the flu season is set to begin. Both diseases are especially dangerous for those over 65.
Although the flu season was nonexistent last year, experts expect a comeback this year with K-12 students back in school, more people traveling and fewer COVID-19 restrictions in place.
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Shingrix Dosage And Schedule
Shingrix should be administered to adults age 50 years and older as a two-dose series , 2 to 6 months apart .
If more than 6 months have elapsed since the first dose of Shingrix, you should administer the second dose as soon as possible. However, you do not need to restart the vaccine series.
If the second dose is given less than 4 weeks after the first dose, the second dose should be considered invalid. A valid second dose should be administered 2 months after the invalid dose .
Live Shingles Vaccine Vs Non
A live vaccine is one that contains a weakened form of a germ. Shingrix is not a live vaccine. Its an inactive vaccine, which is a vaccine thats made from a germ thats been killed.
Because Shingrix is inactive, more people can receive it. This includes people with a weakened immune system .
Zostavax was a shingles vaccine that was live.
People with weakened immune systems are typically advised against receiving live vaccines. This is because on very rare occasions, live vaccines can mutate back to the full-strength germ that causes a disease. If this happens, people with weakened immune systems would have a much higher risk for developing the disease that the vaccine is meant to prevent.
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When Should You Schedule Your Vaccines
Older adults should get their flu shots by the end of October or ideally even sooner, particularly in light of the expected increase in demand for the 202021 winter season caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In fact, given the concerns surrounding the pandemic, older adults should make sure they are up to date on all their vaccinations and any booster shots by the end of October, before winter sets in, Privor-Dumm says.
Still, its important to stagger your vaccinations, as getting them all done at one time could lead to complications. Talk to your doctor about setting up a vaccination schedule that works for you.
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Does Acetaminophen Impact The Immune Response
Often, people elect to take an over-the-counter pain reliever, or give one to their children, prior to vaccines to help with the side effects. Remember a vaccination can cause injection site soreness and elevated temperature afterwards, Hepfer said. Acetaminophen can both relieve pain and reduce fever, but always speak with your pediatrician first to review dosage.
The discussion about acetaminophens impact on immunity comes with the fever-reducing effect. Typically, fevers are a sign your body is working to kill a virus. As a result, many people worry an over-the-counter drug that reduces fevers will impact how well your body fights the viral agents from a vaccine.
Hepfer said the jury is still out on this. While the administration of acetaminophen has been commonplace after childhood immunizations for fever and/or pain at the injection site, several newer studies question whether acetaminophen makes vaccines slightly less effective, Hepfer said. While acetaminophen is not contraindicated, the American Academy of Pediatrics notes that some pediatricians are no longer recommending it for prophylactic use against vaccine side effects.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Shingles
Shingles is a painful rash that develops on one side of the face or body. The rash forms blisters that typically scab over in 7-10 days. Shingles typically takes 2-4 weeks to clear up.
People often feel pain, itching, or tingling in the area 1-5 days before the rash appears.
Most commonly, shingles forms a single stripe of rash on either the left or right hemisphere of the body. Occasionally, the rash occurs on one side of the face. Less commonly, the rash looks similar to chickenpox and is spread more liberally . Shingles can sometimes affect the eyes and cause loss of vision.
Other symptoms of shingles can include fever, headache, chills and upset stomach.
Doctors Worry Shingrix Side Effects Will Put Patients Off Their Second Dose
The CDC has urged people 50 and older to get GlaxoSmithKline’s new shingles vaccine to protect against a notoriously painful condition. But amid the company’s important launch, some doctors are worried patients won’t return for their second dose if they experience side effects.
Speaking with the U.S. News & World Report, geriatrician Arthur Hayward, M.D., said he heard concerns at a recent medical meeting that some patients will hesitate to return if they experience side effects.
According to Shingrix’s FDA label, 78% of vaccine recipients experienced pain at the injection site in clinical tests. Thirty-eight percent experienced redness and 25.9% experienced swelling. Other adverse reactions include muscle pain in 44.7% of recipients, fatigue in 44.5% of recipients, and headache in 37.7% of recipients, according to the FDA. A smaller number of recipients experienced shivering, fever and gastrointestinal symptoms.
A CDC official told the publication that 1 in 6 recipients had side effects severe enough to keep them from their normal activities.
But the side effects were typically mild to moderate and lasted two to three days, according to the FDA, while the vaccine provides strong protection against a condition that can cause pain for weeks. And, in some instances, shingles can lead to postherpetic neuralgia, or longer-term nerve pain that can persist for years.
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Flu/shingles Shot Combo May Hurt Future Flu Vaccine Uptake
People who got the zoster vaccine the same day as their annual influenza shot were more likely to skip their flu shot the following year than people who got the two shots on separate days, according to results from a new study.
Evidence suggests that people mistakenly think adverse effects commonly related to the zoster vaccine including chills, fever, pain, and nausea are caused by the flu vaccine, researchers write in an original investigation published in JAMA Network Open.
The work by Benjamin Rome, MD, MPH, a primary care physician from the Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, and colleagues was November 19.
The study involved 89,237 people with an average age of 72 years. Researchers used Optum’s deidentified Clinformatics Data Mart Database, a national, commercial health insurance claims database that contains information on 17 million patients with commercial insurance and Medicare Advantage plans in all 50 states.
The cohort consisted of people at least 50 years of age who received the influenza vaccine between August 1, 2018 and March 31, 2019, and received the shingles vaccine on the same day or separately in the previous 6 months.
Those who had both shots the same day were significantly less likely than those who got them on different days to get their annual flu shot the next flu season . Results were similar across subgroups.
Contraindications And Precautions For Herpes Zoster Vaccination
Shingrix should not be administered to:
- A person with a history of severe allergic reaction, such as anaphylaxis, to any component of a vaccine or after a previous dose of Shingrix
- A person who is known to be seronegative for varicella
- It is not necessary to screen for a history of varicella. However, if a person is known to be varicella-negative via serologic testing, providers should follow ACIP guidelines for varicella vaccination.
Shingrix has not been studied in pregnant women or women who are breastfeeding. Providers should consider delaying Shingrix vaccination for these women.Adults with a minor acute illness, such as a cold, can receive Shingrix. Adults with a moderate or severe acute illness should usually wait until they recover before getting the vaccine. This includes anyone with a temperature of 101.3°F or higher.To learn more, see Contraindications and Precautions, General Best Practice Guidelines for Immunization: Best Practices Guidance of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices .
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How Is Shingrix Given
Shingrix is given as an injection into a muscle. A healthcare provider will give you this injection.
Shingrix is usually given in a series of 2 shots. The second shot may be given any time within 2 to 6 months after the first shot.
You may receive Shingrix at the same time that you get a flu shot.
Read all patient information, medication guides, and instruction sheets provided to you. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
What Is Shingles And How Can Shingrix Help Protect Against It
Shingles is an itchy and painful skin rash caused by reactivation of the varicella zoster virus . SHINGRIX works to boost your bodys protection against shingles. It is the only shingles vaccine proven to be greater than 90% effective in preventing shingles in adults 50 years and older in clinical trials.
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Persons With Chronic Diseases
Although definitive data are lacking, individuals with autoimmune disease not being treated with immunosuppressive drugs are not considered significantly immunocompromised. Individuals 50 years of age without contraindications should receive RZV.
For more information, refer to Immunization of Immunocompromised Persons, and Immunization of Persons with Chronic Diseases in Part 3.
Fever And Feelings Of Malaise
Fever is one of the most common side effects of many vaccines, including Shingrix. This symptom often accompanies other feelings of malaise, such as muscle pains, chills, and headaches. A fever indicates that the bodys immune system is doing its job of responding to the vaccine.
Ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and other OTC fever reducers can help keep a fever and many accompanying symptoms at bay. However, if you develop a high-grade fever of 103°F or higher, reach out to your doctor immediately.
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