Flu shot season begins in earnest

This year's flu shot contains strains from Influenza A, B and a variety of H1N1 viruses.

The flu vaccine is safe and does not cause the flu.

"Many times in Minnesota we won't see peak flu season until February".

"Any influenza viruses produced in eggs have to adapt to growing in that environment and hence generate mutations to grow better", explained study senior author Ian Wilson, D.Phil., Hansen Professor of Structural Biology at TSRI.

The other cell-based flu vaccine is Flublok®, which is grown in the cells of an insect Spodoptera frugiperda, a moth known as the "fall armyworm" that mainly attacks corn crops in North America.

Kanawha-Charleston Health Department and Putnam County Health Department gave approximately 9,500 vaccinations during last flu season.

The flu comes on suddenly and symptoms may include fever, headache, tiredness, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion and body aches.

The mutation changes hemagglutinin, a flu protein that is a major target of antibodies in the body of a person who is vaccinated.

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"Our main concern with influenza in the community is those who are more vulnerable, including young children, older adults and those with underlying and chronic illnesses that could put them at higher risk of complications", McKee said. "It is an essential preventative health measure and I urge residents to get the flu shot to avoid any unnecessary illness".

Brumage said there is always an advantage to getting a flu vaccination because of the protection vaccinations offer.

Absenteeism is also a common and cumbersome result of the disruption caused by the flu.

Unlike trivalent inactivated vaccines (TIVs), which contain two influenza A strains and one influenza B strain, Fluarix Tetra includes two A and two B strains, offering direct and broad protection against the four strains that account for nearly all seasonal influenza cases globally.

The vaccine can be preserved even at home under the thimerosal preservative since the preservative does not have negative health problems and therefore we can store the vaccine and use it wherever we feel to use it.

"It is nice to get the flu shot before the holiday season's start".

Influenza viruses are constantly changing, which is why it is possible to catch the flu a few times.


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