Friday, September 29, 2023

Should You Get The Flu Shot While Pregnant

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When Not To Get The Flu Shot

Should you get the flu vaccine while pregnant?

There are a few instances where a pregnant woman should not receive the vaccination. As with anyone, you should not get the flu shot if you are suffering from an illness of any sort, since your immune system is already compromised. Its fine to wait until you are well to get the flu shot.

And despite the strong recommendation to get the flu shot, pregnant women are advised against receiving the nasal spray version of the vaccine. Manglani says, the nasal spray vaccine is never approved for use during pregnancy. This is because its a live attenuated vaccine. Live vaccines are not approved in pregnancy because there is a possible risk to baby. In pregnancy, a woman is immunocompromised and could theoretically get the flu from the live vaccine.

Finally, since the flu vaccines are grown in chicken eggs, you should talk to your doctor if you have an egg allergy of any sort.

What Do I Do If I Have Flu Symptoms

Its always best to call your doctor or clinic if youre pregnant and develop flu-like symptoms such as fever, body aches, cough and headache. Its advisable to do this even if youve been vaccinated against the flu. There are medications your doctor can recommend that are safe for use during pregnancy however, they work best if commenced within a couple of days of symptoms starting.

Why Are Pregnant Women At Higher Risk For Serious Flu Illness

Youve probably heard that the flu can be dangerous for older people, infants and people with health conditions. But you may not know that pregnant women are also at higher risk for complications like pneumonia. Why? Because changes to your body make it easier for you to get sick.

Even if you feel healthy and strong while pregnant, pregnancy affects your immune system, heart and lungs. This can make you more susceptible to the flu and can put you at higher risk of more serious illness.

In addition to getting a flu shot, you can take extra steps to stay as healthy as possible, including washing your hands regularly, covering your cough, and keeping your immune system strong by , eating well, and practicing good health habits.

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Possible Flu Shot Side Effects

Generally speaking, you shouldnt expect many adverse side effects from receiving the flu vaccine. The CDC indicates that flu shot side effects can include redness and soreness at the injection site, mild fever, body aches, headache and fatigue. And despite some of the misinformation out there, large-scale studies conducted by trusted medical facilities have repeatedly found the flu shot causes no adverse effects for baby.

When Can My Baby Get A Flu Vaccine

Why Pregnant Women Should Get a Flu Shot

Babies can be vaccinated against the flu starting at 6 months of age, so it is important that your household get vaccinated to help protect baby until that time. Children under 9 years old may need two doses annually for best protection. Check with your doctor, nurse or clinic about other recommended vaccines your children may need.

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Do Flu Vaccines Cause Any Side Effects

Like any medical product, vaccines can cause side effects. Side effects of the flu vaccine are generally mild and go away on their own within a few days.

Common side effects from the flu shot include:

  • Soreness, redness, and/or swelling from the shot
  • Headache
  • Muscle aches

The flu shot, like other injections, can occasionally cause fainting.

Some studies have found a possible small association of injectable flu vaccine with Guillain-Barré syndrome . Overall, these studies estimated the risk for GBS after vaccination as fewer than 1 or 2 cases of GBS per one million people vaccinated. Other studies have not found any association. GBS also, rarely, occurs after flu illness. Even though GBS following flu illness is rare, GBS is more common following flu illness than following flu vaccination. GBS has not been associated with the nasal spray vaccine.

How Serious Is The Flu If I Am Pregnant

The flu is unpredictable and the disease can be severe, especially for pregnant people, older people, young kids, and people with certain health conditions. These groups are at greater risk for serious complications if they get the flu, including:

  • Pneumonia
  • Dehydration
  • Worsening of chronic medical conditions

If you get the flu while you are pregnant, you have a higher risk of complications like preterm labor and preterm birth. You are also more likely to be hospitalized and have an increased risk of dying if you get the flu while you are pregnant. For more information, visit the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists flu and pregnancy page.

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How Is The Safety Of Flu Vaccines In Pregnant People Monitored

CDC and FDA conduct ongoing safety monitoring of vaccines licensed for use in the United States.

CDC and FDA monitor flu vaccine safety during pregnancy during each flu season using the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System : An early warning system that helps CDC and FDA monitor health concerns following vaccination. Anyone can report possible vaccine side effects to VAERS. Generally, VAERS reports cannot determine if a health concern that arises after vaccination was caused by a vaccine, but these reports can help indicate if further investigations are needed.

In addition CDC conducts research studies in the Vaccine Safety Datalink : A collaboration between CDC and nine health care organizations which allows ongoing monitoring and proactive searches of vaccine-related data.

Why You Should Get The Flu Vaccine

Why should pregnant women get vaccinated against flu?

The flu vaccine can protect your baby from flu until they are 6 months old. It can also prevent you from getting flu and passing it on to your baby.

Dr Maeve Eogan, consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist, talks about why you should get the flu vaccine if you are pregnant.

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When To Get The Flu Shot During Pregnancy

The CDC and ACOG agree its safe to get the flu shot at any point during your pregnancy. According to Jennifer Pitotti MD, an ob-gyn at CU Rocky Mountain OB/GYN, The flu vaccine is considered safe at any point in pregnancy but data is more limited for first trimester vaccination. However, the potential risk of first trimester vaccination must be weighed against the significant known risks of having the flu while pregnant.

Of course, if its at all possible, the best time to get vaccinated against the flu is before your pregnancy even begins. So, if you know youll be baby-making during flu season, add a flu shot to your to-do list.

Are You Getting A Flu Shot While Pregnant

My job has a deadline by november 1, pregnancy is exempt i think but wondering if you will still be receiving the shot?

no. i barely leave my house and id just rather not feel like ass

It didn’t make me feel anything different to be honest.

same, I got it last pregnancy and wouldnt have known the difference between getting the shot and just having some blood drawn. No side effects at all.

I felt like crap after my previous flu shots as well, havent had a flu shot in 4 years, havent had the flu in four years.

I never get it so no

I get it even when pregnant. I had no issues in my first two pregnancies with it. Ill get it this year as well so Im primed to help keep the house healthy along with my husband and two kids when the baby arrives in January

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Can The Flu Be Dangerous During Pregnancy

Being pregnant definitely puts you at greater risk for the flu’s more serious complications, like pneumonia. In fact, pregnant women are more likely to be hospitalized from complications of the flu than non-pregnant women of the same age .

From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When You’re Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.

  • Medically reviewed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, May 2018.
  • What to Expect When You’re Expecting, 5th edition, Heidi Murkoff.

How To Treat Flu Shot Side Effects

Flu shot: Despite miscarriage study, pregnant women should get vaccine
Tylenol Tylenol Rapid Release Gels

Usually, any side effects you might get from the flu vaccine go away on their own within a day or twobut you dont have to tough it out if you really feel run down. Try these self-care measures to feel better ASAP:

For muscle aches, headache, or flu-like symptoms, take a pain reliever, such as Tylenol or ibuprofen.

For arm pain after the flu shot, apply a cool compress.

The same goes for side effects of the nasal flu vaccine. Treatment is based on a persons symptoms, Dr. Kemmerly says. All in all, minor aches are a small price to pay for the vast protection the flu vaccine provides for both you and those around you.

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What Are The Benefits Of Having The Flu Vaccine During Pregnancy

There are three main benefits to being vaccinated against the flu duringpregnancy:

  • The vaccine protects you and your unborn baby against the flu. Theeffectiveness of the flu vaccine varies from year to year depending onvarious factors, including how well the vaccine is matched to seasonalinfluenza strains. But research shows individuals who have the vaccine and still contract the flu are less likely to develop severe consequences. Research is currently underway to developa better vaccine that is more broadly effective and doesnt have to beadministered every season. But at the moment, the current seasonalvaccine is the best protection we have for a mum and her unborn baby.

  • Your baby is protected for the first few months after being born. Babiesyounger than six months are at increased risk of respiratory illnessescompared to babies of mothers who had been vaccinated against the flu.Infants cannot receive the flu shot until they are six months old making thisa particularly vulnerable time. When the flu vaccine is given in pregnancy, maternal antibodies are transferredthrough the placenta to the unborn baby, protecting the infant in their first few months of life.

  • The flu vaccine may also protect you against whooping cough. Recent research has found women are less likely to get whooping cough during pregnancy if theyve had the flu shot. The vaccine prevented many mums from contracting the flu, which subsequently protected them from a whooping cough coinfection.

  • Facts About Flu Vaccination Treatment And Pregnancy

  • Pregnant women should receive a seasonal flu shot.
  • Influenza is more likely to cause severe illness in pregnant and postpartum women than in women who are not pregnant. Changes in the immune system, heart, and lungs during pregnancy make pregnant women more prone to severe illness from influenza.
  • Vaccination has been shown to reduce the risk of flu-associated acute respiratory infection in pregnant women by about one-half.
  • Getting a flu shot can reduce a pregnant womans risk of being hospitalized with flu by an average of 40 percent.
  • Pregnant women who get a flu shot are also helping to protect their babies from flu illness for the first several months after their birth, when they are too young to get vaccinated.
  • More information on the importance of flu vaccination during pregnancy isavailable.

  • Flu vaccination is safe during pregnancy.
  • Flu shots have been given to millions of pregnant women over several decades with a good safety record.
  • Pregnant women should get a flu shot NOT the live attenuated vaccine .
  • Postpartum women, even if they are breastfeeding, can receive either type of vaccine.
  • There is a lot of evidence to show that flu shots can be safely given to women during pregnancy. CDC and ACIP recommend that pregnant women get vaccinated during any trimester of their pregnancy.
  • More information on the safety of flu vaccination is available.

  • Antiviral drugs can treat flu illness and are recommended for pregnant women who are sick with flu.
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    Injection Vs Nasal Spray Vaccine

    The influenza vaccine can be delivered as either an injection or as a nasal spray.

    The flu shot can come in a variety of forms that protect against three or four influenza strains. Although no type of flu shot is recommended over others, you should speak to your doctor about which one is best for you.

    The nasal spray contains a small dose of a live, but weakened form of the influenza virus.

    The nasal spray

    What To Do If Youre On The Fence About Getting Vaccinated

    Southern Nevada Health District: Pregnant women, get your flu shot

    Getting the flu shot during any trimester of pregnancy is reasonable and safe, and being vaccinated against the flu in the first trimester will not put your baby at risk. But if youre nervous about getting the flu shot during the first trimester, dont refuse to be vaccinated. Just hold off until after you reach 20 weeks of pregnancy. The Vaccine study reported there was no increased risk after 20 weeks of pregnancy. You might not be as fully protected from the flu, which can lead to serious complications including hospitalization and even death in pregnant women, but your baby will still get the antibody benefit.

    The key takeaway for women is that scientific research studies have never proven a cause/effect relationship between the flu vaccine and miscarriage. In fact, showed no link between miscarriage rates and maternal flu vaccination using clinical data, and an found no increased risk between maternal flu vaccination and birth defects in babies. Even the study published in Vaccine states that the data retrieved demonstrate an association, not a cause/effect relationship, between flu shots and miscarriage.

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    Misconceptions About Flu Vaccines

    Can a flu vaccine give you flu?

    No, flu vaccines cannot cause flu illness. Flu vaccines given with a needle are made with either inactivated viruses, or with only a single protein from the flu virus. The nasal spray vaccine contains live viruses that are attenuated so that they will not cause illness.

    Are any of the available flu vaccines recommended over the others?

    Yes, for some people. For the 2022-2023 flu season, there are three flu vaccines that are preferentially recommended for people 65 years and older. These are Fluzone High-DoseQuadrivalent vaccine, Flublok Quadrivalent recombinantflu vaccine or Fluad Quadrivalent adjuvanted flu vaccine. On June 22, 2022, CDCs Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted unanimously to preferentially recommend these vaccines overstandard-dose unadjuvanted flu vaccines. This recommendation was based on a review of available studies which suggests that, in this age group, these vaccines are potentially more effective than standard dose unadjuvanted flu vaccines. There is no preferential recommendation for people younger than 65 years.

    What if a preferentially recommended flu vaccine is not available?

    If none of the three preferentially recommended flu vaccines for people 65 and older is available at the time of administration, people in this age group should get any other age-appropriate flu vaccine instead.

    Is it better to get sick with flu than to get a flu vaccine?

    Do I really need a flu vaccine every year?

    To 48 Hours After Vaccination

    Once these body-wide side effects set in, they can last for 12 hours or more. Experts say these side effects should all stop within 24 to 48 hours after your shot, though you may still have some slight fatigue or arm soreness after that.

    Mullane says its best to avoid important events or take on key tasks the day after your vaccination if youre concerned about the side effects. Thats because your vaccine appointment and the window for peak symptoms arent likely to happen at the same time. Most side effects come later.

    Its OK to take an anti-inflammatory medication like Tylenol or ibuprofen to relieve any symptoms. But Mullane says not to take it before the shot, as it can interfere with your immune response.

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    What If Youre Not Pregnant Yet Can You Get Pregnant After Your Flu Shot

    You absolutely can. The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends that people who are trying to get pregnant get vaccinated. People who get the flu while pregnant are at a higher risk for serious illness and complications. You will have full protection 2 weeks after immunization. Choose the flu shot instead of the nasal spray vaccine if youre trying to get pregnant soon. The nasal spray contains the live virus and should not be used during pregnancy.

    What Is A Flu Shot

    Flu Shot During Pregnancy: Is It Safe?

    Influenza vaccination protects you against the seasonal flu, a contagious respiratory illness.

    If you end up with the flu, you might experience symptoms like fever, cough, body aches, and a sore throat. The flu is never fun but it can be a lot more serious if you are very old, very young, have certain medical conditions, or are pregnant.

    There are two main types of flu vaccine: an injection and a nasal spray. Making sure you get one of these each year is the best way to avoid becoming infected. Getting the shot annually is important because the virus changes and develops, so researchers update the vaccine composition.

    In the United States, flu season begins around October and peaks between December and February, so you should schedule your vaccination as early as October 1.

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