All content below is taken in its entirety from the CDC Inactivated Influenza Vaccine Information Statement (VIS): http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/flulive.html
CDC review information for Inactivated Influenza VIS:
Content source: National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases
Why Get Vaccinated?
Influenza ("flu") is a contagious disease that spreads around the United States every winter, usually between October and May.
Flu is caused by influenza viruses, and is spread mainly by coughing, sneezing, and close contact.
Anyone can get flu, but the risk of getting flu is highest among children. Symptoms come on suddenly and may last several days. They can include:
Flu can make some people much sicker than others. These people include young children, people 65 and older, pregnant women, and people with certain health conditions – such as heart, lung or kidney disease, nervous system disorders, or a weakened immune system. Flu vaccination is especially important for these people, and anyone in close contact with them.
Flu can also lead to pneumonia, and make existing medical conditions worse. It can cause diarrhea and seizures in children. Each year, thousands of people in the United States die from flu, and many more are hospitalized.
Flu vaccine is the best protection against flu and its complications. Flu vaccine also helps prevent spreading flu from person to person.
Live, Attenuated Flu Vaccine - LAIV, Nasal Spray
You are getting a live, attenuated influenza vaccine (called LAIV), which is sprayed into the nose. "Attenuated" means weakened. The viruses in the vaccine have been weakened so they won't give you the flu.
There are other "inactivated" and "recombinant" flu vaccines that do not contain live virus. These "flu shots" are given by injection with a needle. Injectable flu vaccines are described in a separate Vaccine Information Statement.
Flu vaccination is recommended every year. Some children from 6 months through 8 years of age might need two doses during one year.
Flu viruses are always changing. Each year's flu vaccine is made to protect against viruses that are likely to cause disease that year. LAIV protects against 4 different influenza viruses. Flu vaccine cannot prevent all cases of flu, but it is the best defense against the disease.
It takes about 2 weeks for protection to develop after vaccination, and protection lasts several months to a year.
Some illnesses that are not caused by influenza virus are often mistaken for flu. Flu vaccine will not prevent these illnesses. It can only prevent influenza.
LAIV may be given to people from 2 through 49 years of age. It may safely be given at the same time as other vaccines.
LAIV does not contain thimerosal or other preservatives.
Some People Should Not Get This Vaccine
Tell the person who gives you the vaccine:
You should get the flu shot instead of the nasal spray if you:
The person giving you the vaccine can give you more information.
Risks of a Vaccine Reaction
With a vaccine, like any medicine, there is a chance of side effects. These are usually mild and go away on their own.
Problems that could happen after any vaccine:
Mild problems that have been reported following LAIV:
Children and adolescents 2-17 years of age:
Adults 18-49 years of age:
LAIV is made from weakened virus and does not cause flu.
As with any medicine, there is a very remote chance of a vaccine causing a serious injury or death. The safety of vaccines is always being monitored. For more information, visit: www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/
What If There is a Serious Reaction?
What should I look for?
What should I do?
VAERS does not give medical advice.
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program
The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) is a federal program that was created to compensate people who may have been injured by certain vaccines.
Persons who believe they may have been injured by a vaccine can learn about the program and about filing a claim by calling 1-800-338-2382 or visiting the VICP website at www.hrsa.gov/vaccinecompensation. There is a time limit to file a claim for compensation.
How can I learn more?
Contact the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
Vaccine information statement: Influenza Vaccine (Flu Vaccine, Live, Intranasal), 2014-2015. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at http:www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/flulive.html. Accessed August 25, 2014.
Updated by: Editorial update 09/09/2014. David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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