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People with Egg Allergies Shouldn't Worry About the Flu Shot, Guidelines Say

20 December 2017

For some licensed preparations, the viruses were grown in chicken eggs and therefore the vaccine contained trace amounts of egg protein which can induce immediate hypersensitivity reactions.

"Egg allergy affects almost 2% of children, and around 29% of these children may have asthma", Matthew Greenhawt, MD, MBA, MSc, lead author of the practice parameter, chair of ACAAI Food Allergy Committee, Children's Hospital Colorado, University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine, told MD Magazine. In the past, people with egg allergy were advised to explore egg-free flu vaccination options.

It's still early in the flu season, but hospitals in Hamilton are already beginning to plan for a "surge" in visits to the emergency room. It's not too late to get a flu shot, health officials said.

The authors conclude by stating that "Vaccine providers and screening questionnaires do not need to ask about the egg allergy status of recipients of influenza vaccine".

Require longer-than-normal observation periods after the shot. No one in the studies had a severe reaction. The new guidelines reinforce the fact that the flu vaccine is safe and effective for everyone - even those with egg allergies.

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The researchers concluded that someone who is allergic to eggs is not at an increased risk of experiencing an adverse reaction to the flu vaccine.

Khan said there is also an intranasal spray version of the vaccine for those who don't want the needle.

These recommendations from the allergy community are consistent with those from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Pediatrics, all emphasizing the safety and importance of egg-allergic patients receiving their annual influenza vaccine.

Symptoms of the flu include fever, cough, sore throat, runny/stuffy nose, headache, muscle aches and extreme fatigue.

The guidelines come just as flu season is at its peak this year.

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"You may be able to pass on the flu to someone else before you know you are sick, as well as while you are sick", the agency says.

The DPH said more than 250 people tested positive for the flu as of early December.

As for how effective this year's vaccine will be?

"My understanding is there's definitely some open beds at this time, we have the capacity to open extra beds if needed still", Khan said.

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People with Egg Allergies Shouldn't Worry About the Flu Shot, Guidelines Say