The decision whether to get a flu shot is a difficult one. I read a variety of medical journals and articles supporting both sides. I see patients who swear by their yearly flu shot and those who tell me they’ll never do one or about how they got sick after a previous injection that changed their outlook. I make no recommendation either way, other than that you should explore your options fully and focus on bolstering the overall immune response through a variety of diet, hygiene, exercise, chiropractic, etc.
To make matters even more confusing recent research indicates that the flu vaccine does not reduce risk of death in the elderly as commonly proposed. “The results of this study suggest that many previous observational studies have overestimated the mortality benefits of influenza vaccination due to difficult-to-correct confounding attributable to the ‘healthy-user’ effect.”
But there are those individuals who are not good candidates for the vaccine, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics and it’s important to point out this section of the population.
The publication To Your Health indicates in an article questioning whether a flu shot is right for you:
The AAP provides guidelines for circumstances under which patients should not be vaccinated with the flu shot or nasal spray. According to the AAP, a patient should not get vaccinated if any of the following applies (whether restriction applies to flu shot, nasal spray or both is noted in parentheses):
- Less than 6 months of age (flu shot); less than 5 or older than 49 (nasal spray)
- Moderate to severe febrile (fever) illness (both)
- History of Guillain-Barre syndrome (both)
- Hypersensitivity, including anaphylaxis, to eggs, to any influenza vaccine dose, or to any of its components (both)
- Asthma, reactive airway disease, or other chronic disorders of the lungs or cardiovascular systems (nasal spray)
- Have underlying medical conditions including metabolic diseases, such as diabetes, renal dysfunction, and hemoglobinopathies
- Received other live vaccines within the past four weeks (nasal spray)
- Known or suspected immunodeficiency disease, or receiving immunosuppressive therapies (nasal spray)
- Take aspirin (nasal spray)
Once again, I focus on this part of the article because I rarely hear the media or the CDC for that matter talk about those who should NOT get the shot. This is from a reputable medical source as well, the AAP.