Saturday, November 21, 2015

The Facts About Flu Shots DC

By Mattie Knight

In a city with a population of around 660,000 distributed at a density of more than 10,000 per square mile, it is not rocket science to realize that there is a need for flu shots DC. This is the heart of the American government. An elevated temperature, aches and pains and snot coming out of his nose are not simply not what you want to see in the leader of the free world.

Every year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that anywhere from three thousand to 49 thousand people die from influenza. Many others develop chronic breathing problems. Complications of the flu include viral or bacterial pneumonia, asthma, or sinus infections.

Influenza is itself caused by a virus and cannot be contained by the use of drugs, such as antibiotics. Its incidence can, however, be controlled by having as many people as possible immunized from the disease. Those who go on to develop the disease despite having the vaccine are fortunate to have only a light case. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), everyone should receive a vaccination once every year.

The current advice is that everyone, with few exceptions, be immunized annually. Some people fall into the high risk category and are particularly encouraged to have the shot. These people are those who are more than 65 years old, children under the age of five, especially those under two, and residents of communal living institutions like nursing homes. Apparently, natives of Alaska and American Indians are at increased risk of flu complications; they, too, are advised to have the jab each year.

The list of medical conditions for which it is strongly urged that people should be immunized is a long one. It includes lung conditions such as COPD, cystic fibrosis and asthma. People who have a Body Mass Index (BMI) higher than 40, people under 19 years old who are receiving long-term aspirin therapy and people with metabolic disorders including diabetes should also be vaccinated. Finally, people with heart disease or disorders of the endocrine or immune systems, liver or kidneys should receive a shot every year.

Any high profile medical issue attracts certain misconceptions and the influenza vaccination is no exception. One popular myth doing the rounds is that pregnant women need permission from their regular doctor if they want to get the injection at a workplace clinic, pharmacy or anywhere else but their local doctor's office. This is not the case.

Another widely held belief is that the influenza vaccination actually causes the disease. This is quite impossible. Either the injection contains no virus whatsoever, or what virus it does contain has been inactivated. Sometimes people get side effects from the jab, for instance, headache, muscular aches or a low fever. Usually, people will feel a little sensitive around the injection site for a day or two.

Diarrhea, nausea and vomiting are often mistakenly referred to as the "stomach flu." While true influenza may introduce these symptoms as a side effect, in and of themselves they are not caused by an influenza virus.

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