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Get Your Flu Shot!

Get Your Flu Shot!

It’s that time again. Where ever you get your flu vaccine – GO!  Flu seasons are unpredictable and the timing, severity, and length of the season varies from year to year.  It can begin in October and last through May, peaking in January and February.  Getting the flu vaccine will sustain you through the season.

            Most of the flu vaccine offered this season will be trivalent, meaning it will be made up of three viruses – the H1N1, the H3N2, and the B/Massachusetts/2/20012.  There is also a quadrivalent vaccine containing the above viruses plus B/Brisbane/60/2008 virus – a higher dose vaccine that is available for adults 65 and older.  The reason for the higher dose of vaccine is humane immune defenses become weaker with age, which places older people at greater risk of severe illness from the flu.  Also, aging decreases the body’s ability to have a good immune response after getting the flu vaccine.  The important thing is to get the flu vaccine.  Clinics, some doctor’s offices, health departments and pharmacies are available to get the vaccine.

            NEWS FLASH!!!  According to the June/July AARP Magazine, a potential perk of the flu shot is heart disease and stroke protection.  As reported: a new review of research finds that getting a flu shot could cut your risk of having a heart attack or stroke by 48 percent.  Study coauthor Jacob A. Udell, MD, of Women’s College Hospital in Toronto speculates that vaccinated “may block the inflammatory response our bodies mount to combat a flu infection, which protects arterial plaques from rupturing and causing a cardiac event.”  Another great reason to have a flu shot!

Reprinted with permission from the Cape Cod COPD Support Group Newsletter

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