October 18, 2017

Local health officials encouraging flu shots

12 October 2017, 03:02 | Winifred Adams

Commentary: The truth about influenza and vaccines

Oklahoma's 2017-18 Flu Season Underway

The Oklahoma State Department of Health says the current flu season typically runs through May of 2018, and one of the best ways to prevent getting sick is by getting the vaccine. The trivalent influenza vaccine for the 2017-2018 flu season includes an A/Michigan/45/2015 (H1N1) pdm09-like virus, an A/Hong Kong/4801/2014 (H3N2)-like virus, and a B/Brisbane/60/2008-like virus (Victoria lineage). The symptoms of Influenza start to show two days after exposure to the virus: a cough, sore throat, runny nose or blockage, body and muscle aches, headaches, tiredness, vomiting and diarrhoea in some people and especially in children.

That's the biggest misconception about the influenza vaccine, according to Southern Illinois Healthcare Foundation, and one of the most unsafe as we head into the season of flu shots literally available at every corner drugstore.

Since 2010, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommended that everyone 6 months of age and older receive a flu vaccine each season.

Fluzone High-Dose: It is a high potency vaccine that contains four times the amount of antigen compared to a standard flu shot.

It's flu season in Oklahoma. Those without insurance can go to a county public health center. There is no live flu virus in flu shots. You've got a lot of things working against you.

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Neither vaccine is recommended for seniors who are allergic to chicken eggs or those who have had a severe reaction to flu shots in the past.

Flu vaccines also are available at doctors' offices and pharmacies.

In California, an 86-year-old San Diego County man died on October 1, 2017, after being hospitalized with complications from the flu. By this time a year ago, only 71 cases of the flu had been reported.

Stay home from work, school, and other public places if you are ill.

Flu shots are not ideal, but they are the best protection modern science has against the disease.

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