Flu Season Expected To Be A Bad One

It's peak flu season: Here's what you need to know

Medical officials said people should still get vaccinated, because it's the first and most important way to protect you and those around you from getting the flu. 24 Spokane County residents have been hospitalized with flu this season, compared to nine during the same period a year ago. Australia had a really bad flu season, Fauci said, and they used a similar vaccine to what has been released in the USA this flu season. The most common side effects from the influenza vaccine are soreness, redness, or swelling at the site of the injection and, in some cases, a low-grade fever, headache or muscle-ache.

On a good year, vaccines are 50 to 60 percent effective.

"If you look historically and put things into perspective, there's variability in flu seasons".

The perspective called for more research to be done in developing a universal flu vaccine, which could protect against all seasonal flu variants and strains and would eliminate the need for people to get flu shots each year.

The FluMist vaccine, also known as LAIV (live, attenuated influenza vaccine) is made from four weakened flu virus strains, two each representing Type A and Type B. Two segments of the strains used in the vaccine change periodically to match influenza circulating in the population. The result showed in principle that this mutation site, and perhaps others on the virus, may be used as "dimmer switches" to adjust the vaccine's strength up or down-so that it induces an immune response without also causing illness.

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The flu season is just getting underway in North America, but if Australia's experience with influenza is any guide, we're in for a miserable winter.

MYTH 4: Everyone receives the same type of flu shot. If you were wondering how bad this year's flu season will be, experts are warning that it might be risky.

MYTH 5: Flu vaccines are only for really sick people.

Some people, such as those over the age of 65, young children, pregnant women, American Indian/Alaska Natives and those with certain health conditions, are at higher risk for serious flu complications.

FACT: Influenza certainly does not discriminate. "Your best chance at protecting yourself and loved ones is to get a flu shot soon".

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