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Foil the flu: have you had your shot yet?

* Each year's flu shots are tailored to protect against three (trivalent) or four (quadrivalent) of the most common influenza viruses observed that year.

* Flu shots are recommended for virtually everyone over the age of 6 months. (It's only contraindicated for those already experiencing flu-like symptoms, or those who have had bad reactions to the shot in the past.)

* Flu shots are strongly recommended for pregnant women and people with chronic conditions who may suffer even more serious consequences from contracting the flu.

* Influenza vaccines are developed from dead viruses; they cannot reanimate, reactivate or otherwise come back to life to infect you after you've received the shot.

Question; I got a flu shot and then got sick. Did the shot give me the flu?

Answer: No, Here's what may have happened:

1. You contracted a strain of the influenza virus that was not included in this year's vaccine. (Sometimes getting a flu shot makes us act somewhat carelessly about disease in general, especially when it comes to washing hands and not touching our faces.)

2. You came down with a cold, perhaps caused by bacteria (which cannot be vaccinated against) or that was otherwise unrelated to influenza.

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Title Annotation:PULSE
Author:Wallace, Hannah
Publication:Sarasota Magazine
Date:Nov 1, 2015
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