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Q: Should I wait to get my flu shot so it lasts all season?

Posted October 02, 2013 in Adel, Advice Column

A: In short, the answer to that question is no. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that you get the flu vaccination as soon as it becomes available.

Because the flu season can be so unpredictable as to when it may begin, it is important to get vaccinated early. The vaccine does take about two weeks to develop antibodies to protect against influenza. The current recommendations by the CDC are for all persons 6 months of age and older to receive the vaccination, with few exceptions.

There are several different flu vaccine options for this flu season. The standard trivalent vaccine is the most common and is approved for persons 6 months of age and older. There is also a high dose vaccine approved for those 65 years of age and older, an egg-free vaccine approved for those 18 – 49 years of age and an intradermal vaccine approved for those 18 – 64 years of age.

New this year is the quadrivalent flu vaccine which will protect against two influenza A viruses and two influenza B viruses. Also available is the nasal spray vaccine approved for people 2 through 49 years of age with a few exceptions.

The CDC does not recommend one flu vaccine over another, but the important thing is that you get the vaccine every year. Check with your local doctors office, public health or pharmacy to get your vaccine today.

Information provided by Jane Clausen, Adel Health Mart, 113 N. Ninth St., 993-3644.

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