There is plenty of flu vaccine available for protecting the populace against flu syndrome this year. Many clinics and pharmacies around the U.S. began giving flu shots several weeks ago. Have you had yours?
Recommendations by health officials on who should get the flu shot have broadened over the last several years. Currently, anyone over 6 months should get the flu vaccine if they are not severely egg allergic or allergic to the flu vaccine by history. People over 65 years of age, young children, or those older than 6 months with a history of asthma, other chronic respiratory problems, chronic heart, liver, kidney disease, diabetes or immune deficiencies or who are pregnant are highly recommended to get annual flu vaccination.
Here are five of the most common reasons my patients have avoided getting the flu vaccine:
1) "I'm afraid of getting the flu from the flu shot"
2) "My friend got sick after getting a flu shot"
3) "My child may become autistic from the preservative in the flu v...
Have you seen the commercials for flu shots offered at your local grocery store? Or have you seen the signs outside the large chain pharmacies advertising that flu shots are available already?
Some businesses are offering clever incentives for getting vaccinated this year. There is one grocery chain which is offering 10 percent off your grocery bill if you get your flu shot while shopping. It’s an interesting way to motivate people to get themselves vaccinated. Quite a move to influence public health.
I remember the first year that I got my own influenza vaccine at a local grocery store. Shots were only offered during narrow hours and locations were running out of vaccines quickly. I stood in a line which spanned from the pharmacy area, past the meat area, and into the bakery area. That was the year I decided while standing in line to get the pneumonia shot in addition to the flu shot.
At that time, I had been rather motivated to get th...
Medications Vaccines are available to prevent influenza (See Viral Influenza Vaccines section in this report). For mild influenza, symptom relief is similar to that for colds. Who Needs Antiviral Drugs Two classes of antiviral agents have been developed to treat influenza: neuraminidase inhibitors and M2 inhibitors. These drugs can shorten symptoms but there is no indication that they can prevent or reduce complications such as pneumonia. They do not help if they are started after the first 36 hours of illness. Because of emerging drug resistance, some experts suggest these drugs be reserved for severely ill patients or those at high risk. Most people who get seasonal flu or H1N1 flu will likely recover without needing medical care. Doctors, however, can prescribe antiviral drugs to treat people who become very sick with the flu or are at high risk for flu complications. If you need treatment for the flu, the CDC recommends that your doctor give you zanamivir (Relenza) or osteltamivir (Tami...
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