Egg Allergy? Yes, You Can Get the Flu Shot
According to the CDC, getting an annual flu vaccine is the single most important step you can take to protect yourself from influenza – a group of viruses that sends hundreds of thousands of Americans to the hospital each year. Because most flu vaccines are manufactured in chicken eggs and may contain trace amounts of egg protein, people with egg allergies had been advised to seek alternative egg-free vaccine options -- but that is no longer the case.
A report published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology suggests that flu vaccines are safe – and to be recommended – for everyone over age 6 months, including children who are allergic to eggs. (Egg allergy is rare in adults, according to Matthew Greenhawt, MD, lead author of the report.) These updated guidelines are based on an analysis of 28 studies involving thousands of people with egg allergies, which was conducted by researchers from the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI).
The ACAAI’s recommendation is that it’s no longer necessary for people who are allergic to eggs to see an allergy specialist before getting a flu shot or to receive a special flu shot that doesn’t contain traces of egg protein. Health care providers no longer have to ask patients about egg allergies before administering flu vaccines or observe people with egg allergies longer than normal after they receive a flu shot.