Combining Flu Shot With Annual Checkup Can Lead to Better Health

Posted Sep 16, 2014

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Everyone knows that the best way to avoid the flu is to get an annual flu shot. But a trip to your physician every autumn for this vaccination can help you avoid much more than the dreaded flu bug.
 
“At the doctor’s office, the focus is on you and what is going on with your health. This is your time to talk about concerns to improve your well-being beyond the flu season,” said Jorge Parada, M.D., MPH, the medical director of the Infection Prevention & Control Program at Loyola University Health System.
 
When is the best time of year to get the flu shot? The official flu season is Oct. 1-March 31, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
 
“Getting the flu shot in October gives you the best chance of avoiding the flu this year,” Parada said. “If you get your flu shot in the beginning of September, you may start running out of infection immunity by February or March, when the virus is still around."
The flu season traditionally peaks late December to early February, he said.
 
“Remember that it takes up to 2 weeks after the flu shot for the full effect to kick in,” Parada said. “And if you are exposed to the flu around the time you get your flu shot, you may still experience the flu, but don’t blame the flu shot."
 
Just like with other infectious diseases such as polio, mumps, chicken pox and whooping cough, the more people to get vaccinated, the better. “When people are universally vaccinated, those infections are largely eliminated,” Parada said. “It may not sound sexy, but it is everyone’s civic responsibility to protect themselves and their community."
 
Millions of dollars are lost each year during the flu season due to missed days of work, the cost of medications and related expenses. And many lose their lives due to the flu.
 
“The most vulnerable members of our society, the very young, the elderly or chronically ill, and pregnant women, are hit the hardest by the flu,” Parada said.
 
For 2014, the flu vaccination composition is the same as in 2013. The 2014-15 trivalent influenza vaccine is made from the following 3 viruses:
  • an A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus
  • an A/Texas/50/2012 (H3N2)-like virus
  • a B/Massachusetts/2/2012-like virus
It is recommended that quadrivalent vaccines containing 2 influenza B viruses contain the above 3 viruses and a B/Brisbane/60/2008-like virus.
 
There are hundreds of varieties of the flu. “The flu virus is mutating all the time, but health professionals track what happens in other countries that experience the flu season earlier and identify the primary strains,” Parada said.
Source: Loyola University Health System, http://www.loyolamedicine.org/newswire/news/combining-flu-shot-annual-checkup-can-lead-better-health
Everyone knows that the best way to avoid the flu is to get an annual flu shot. But a trip to your physician every autumn for this vaccination can help you avoid much more than the dreaded flu bug.
 
“At the doctor’s office, the focus is on you and what is going on with your health. This is your time to talk about concerns to improve your well-being beyond the flu season,” said Jorge Parada, M.D., MPH, the medical director of the Infection Prevention & Control Program at Loyola University Health System.
 
When is the best time of year to get the flu shot? The official flu season is Oct. 1-March 31, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
 
“Getting the flu shot in October gives you the best chance of avoiding the flu this year,” Parada said. “If you get your flu shot in the beginning of September, you may start running out of infection immunity by February or March, when the virus is still around."
The flu season traditionally peaks late December to early February, he said.
 
“Remember that it takes up to 2 weeks after the flu shot for the full effect to kick in,” Parada said. “And if you are exposed to the flu around the time you get your flu shot, you may still experience the flu, but don’t blame the flu shot."
 
Just like with other infectious diseases such as polio, mumps, chicken pox and whooping cough, the more people to get vaccinated, the better. “When people are universally vaccinated, those infections are largely eliminated,” Parada said. “It may not sound sexy, but it is everyone’s civic responsibility to protect themselves and their community."
 
Millions of dollars are lost each year during the flu season due to missed days of work, the cost of medications and related expenses. And many lose their lives due to the flu.
 
“The most vulnerable members of our society, the very young, the elderly or chronically ill, and pregnant women, are hit the hardest by the flu,” Parada said.
 
For 2014, the flu vaccination composition is the same as in 2013. The 2014-15 trivalent influenza vaccine is made from the following 3 viruses:
  • an A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus
  • an A/Texas/50/2012 (H3N2)-like virus
  • a B/Massachusetts/2/2012-like virus
It is recommended that quadrivalent vaccines containing 2 influenza B viruses contain the above 3 viruses and a B/Brisbane/60/2008-like virus.
 
There are hundreds of varieties of the flu. “The flu virus is mutating all the time, but health professionals track what happens in other countries that experience the flu season earlier and identify the primary strains,” Parada said.
Source: Loyola University Health System, http://www.loyolamedicine.org/newswire/news/combining-flu-shot-annual-checkup-can-lead-better-health
Everyone knows that the best way to avoid the flu is to get an annual flu shot. But a trip to your physician every autumn for this vaccination can help you avoid much more than the dreaded flu bug.
 
“At the doctor’s office, the focus is on you and what is going on with your health. This is your time to talk about concerns to improve your well-being beyond the flu season,” said Jorge Parada, M.D., MPH, the medical director of the Infection Prevention & Control Program at Loyola University Health System.
 
When is the best time of year to get the flu shot? The official flu season is Oct. 1-March 31, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
 
“Getting the flu shot in October gives you the best chance of avoiding the flu this year,” Parada said. “If you get your flu shot in the beginning of September, you may start running out of infection immunity by February or March, when the virus is still around."
The flu season traditionally peaks late December to early February, he said.
 
“Remember that it takes up to 2 weeks after the flu shot for the full effect to kick in,” Parada said. “And if you are exposed to the flu around the time you get your flu shot, you may still experience the flu, but don’t blame the flu shot."
 
Just like with other infectious diseases such as polio, mumps, chicken pox and whooping cough, the more people to get vaccinated, the better. “When people are universally vaccinated, those infections are largely eliminated,” Parada said. “It may not sound sexy, but it is everyone’s civic responsibility to protect themselves and their community."
 
Millions of dollars are lost each year during the flu season due to missed days of work, the cost of medications and related expenses. And many lose their lives due to the flu.
 
“The most vulnerable members of our society, the very young, the elderly or chronically ill, and pregnant women, are hit the hardest by the flu,” Parada said.
 
For 2014, the flu vaccination composition is the same as in 2013. The 2014-15 trivalent influenza vaccine is made from the following 3 viruses:
  • an A/California/7/2009 (H1N1)pdm09-like virus
  • an A/Texas/50/2012 (H3N2)-like virus
  • a B/Massachusetts/2/2012-like virus
It is recommended that quadrivalent vaccines containing 2 influenza B viruses contain the above 3 viruses and a B/Brisbane/60/2008-like virus.
 
There are hundreds of varieties of the flu. “The flu virus is mutating all the time, but health professionals track what happens in other countries that experience the flu season earlier and identify the primary strains,” Parada said.
Source: Loyola University Health System, http://www.loyolamedicine.org/newswire/news/combining-flu-shot-annual-checkup-can-lead-better-health

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