Got Our Flu Shots Friday

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    Sep 07, 2014 6:05 AM GMT
    My husband had a doctor's appointment Friday, and as usual was told all his lab results were great, nothing out of range. Actually better than my own, and for a man his age quite extraordinary.

    While there I saw signs up that the new flu shots for this season were in, and asked if we could both have them (I have the same doctor). We got them immediately, which for patients over 65 is the high dose version.

    Good for older people who don't respond to vaccines as well as those younger, but also more likely to produce side effects. Like soreness at the injection site, and mild cold symptoms. Which I did sometimes experience many years ago, with the early vaccine formulations.

    Well, so far no problems. My arm is slightly tender if I touch it, but not much, and nothing else. I know we have this flu shot debate on RJ each year, but I endorse them. And I continue to believe fears of side effects are much exaggerated, even with the high dose variety. Most of you would be getting the weaker version, with even less chance of an unpleasant reaction.
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    Sep 07, 2014 6:48 AM GMT
    Most or many people don't know the difference between the flu and a cold and when they have a cold they think it's the flu. If they got a flu shot and then get a cold they think that the flu shot was pointless.

    It's easy to figure out; with the flu you also get a fever, which for me means a relentless headache which ibuprofen and anything else won't touch. A good thermometer (not digital) is a good way to check to see if you have a fever.

    Other than the fever the symptoms are the same. Which is weird to me because when I was young the flu meant lots of gastrointestinal upset; nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. And the fever. But that's no longer the case.
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    Sep 07, 2014 6:50 AM GMT
    I read recently that there are two types of flu shots available, a 4 strain and 3 strain. Usually it's the 3 strain but if you ask you can get the 4 strain one.
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    Sep 07, 2014 7:12 AM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal saidI read recently that there are two types of flu shots available, a 4 strain and 3 strain. Usually it's the 3 strain but if you ask you can get the 4 strain one.

    Called quadrivalent and trivalent. The CDC are not endorsing one over the other. But I understand Medicare and some medical plans will not fully pay for the quadrivalent, it's extra cost. I believe our high dose for 65+ was the trivalent, and cost us nothing.
  • guardcomp

    Posts: 7

    Sep 08, 2014 5:59 PM GMT
    To give a bit of insight from a public health standpoint,

    The flu shot does NOT stop you getting the flu. It's not designed to stop it but merely give your body a chance to build up immunity to the weaker (attenuated) strains given in the injection.

    A lot of people get the flu shot, wind up with the flu (mild symptoms) and instantly claim the vaccine didn't work.

    The purpose of the vaccine is so, that if you do get the flu, it's much less severe and less Likely to hospitalize you. It's not a 100% I will NOT get the flu this year vaccine.

    Also as mentioned above the vaccine has 3 strains of the best "guess" as to what the main types (strains) will be for the year.

    Sometimes the strains that are showing the greatest promise of being the years big 3, don't end up as the ones that we thought they would be.

    It's a personal decision whether or not to have a flu shot, but please don't go around spreading the anti-vaccination propaganda with the thoughts that they're myths. They DO serve a purpose.
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    Sep 08, 2014 6:53 PM GMT
    GuardComp said
    It's a personal decision whether or not to have a flu shot, but please don't go around spreading the anti-vaccination propaganda with the thoughts that they're myths. They DO serve a purpose.

    Yes. And also please not go around spreading the flu to others. It's called social responsibility.

    Plus for older guys like my husband & me, possibly an issue of surviving. I know that doesn't concern the majority of guys here (neither for themselves NOR for us), but I still can't see why one would want to risk being sick as a dog for upwards of 2 weeks.
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    Sep 08, 2014 7:38 PM GMT
    I haven't had a flu shot in years and I never get the flu. However a few years ago I was at my doctor's office getting routine blood drawn and after she drew the blood I felt another prick. I said "what was that?" She informed me she just gave me a flu shot. I chewed her out and told her I never asked for a flu shot. And guess what...I got a very bad case of the flu that year.
  • guardcomp

    Posts: 7

    Sep 08, 2014 7:45 PM GMT
    You can't use a confirmation bias/hindsight bias as proof. You got sick and had the flu... You can't know that you weren't going to get it anyways. But you see an option to blame something which would agree with your opinion.
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    Sep 08, 2014 9:33 PM GMT
    Is the flu shot good for a finite period of time? I remember always getting it around Halloween. If I get the shot almost two months earlier am I still good when flu season comes around in February?
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    Sep 09, 2014 12:21 AM GMT
    GuardComp saidYou can't use a confirmation bias/hindsight bias as proof. You got sick and had the flu... You can't know that you weren't going to get it anyways. But you see an option to blame something which would agree with your opinion.


    Wrong. I'm stating my experience. Quite different.
  • Rhi_Bran

    Posts: 904

    Sep 09, 2014 1:35 AM GMT
    I've never once had the flu in my life, or rather, if I had I wouldn't have been able to tell it apart from a mild cold. I am very prone to strep throat though, having had it 6-7 times thus far - all but one rapid culture returned as positive. No idea why - I know loads of people who have never had it.

    //////Other than the fever the symptoms are the same. Which is weird to me because when I was young the flu meant lots of gastrointestinal upset; nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. And the fever. But that's no longer the case. //////

    Children very often display atypical symptoms when infected with the flu or cold simply because their immune systems are still developing and as such the immune response is different.

    (Sorry, for some reason I can't use quotes or italics)

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    Sep 09, 2014 6:47 AM GMT
    Rhi_Bran saidI've never once had the flu in my life...

    Your "life" is 24 years, according to your profile. I've been around a lot longer, and have had the flu a few times. It's ain't pretty.

    And I've not had the flu since I began taking the shot.

    I could still get it, some strain against which I'm not protected. Or I could get the flu in a milder form. I fully know this.

    But It's a matter of lowering my risk. Not eliminating it 100%, I know that can't be done. But a lesser risk is better than a being open to a full risk. Or if I do contract the flu, hopefully it will be mild because I had the shot.

    At my age, and even more my husband, the flu could be very serious, even fatal. To a young college-age kid, it means maybe just a week or two of missed classes, or being out of work. You easily survive, but what a miserable, rotten experience. It's a lot more than a cold, if you've never been through it.

    And so you don't want to get the vaccine shot WHY? I still haven't heard a good justification yet. A lot of prevarication, but no convincing arguments.

    I'd like to hear some compelling arguments, backed up with facts, for not getting the flu shot.
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Sep 09, 2014 7:24 PM GMT
    It's good for the elderly and people with low immunity to get the flu shot.
    I got it once years ago and got the flu. Never had it before and still don't get it or get the flu.
    During cold season I take eldeberry and up my Vitamin C.
    If I travel I take Airbourne..
    Work out 6 days a week. Plenty of fluids.
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    Sep 10, 2014 5:39 PM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    Rhi_Bran saidI've never once had the flu in my life...

    Your "life" is 24 years, according to your profile. I've been around a lot longer, and have had the flu a few times. It's ain't pretty.

    And I've not had the flu since I began taking the shot.

    I could still get it, some strain against which I'm not protected. Or I could get the flu in a milder form. I fully know this.

    But It's a matter of lowering my risk. Not eliminating it 100%, I know that can't be done. But a lesser risk is better than a being open to a full risk. Or if I contract the flu, hopefully it will be mild.

    At my age, and even more my husband, the flu could be very serious, even fatal. To a young college-age kid, it means maybe just a week or two of missed classes, or being out of work. You easily survive, but what a miserable, rotten experience. It's a lot more than a cold, if you've never been through it.

    And so you don't want to get the vaccine shot WHY? I still haven't heard a good justification yet. A lot of prevarication, but no convincing arguments.

    I'd like to hear some compelling arguments, backed up with facts, for not getting the flu shot.


    They don't make enough flu shot to give it to everyone. They focus on the vulnerable (extremes of age, people with underlying lung disease) and those who could easily give it to the vulnerable- health care workers, immediate family members of those with lung disease, etc.
    Healthy people with a competent immune system and who don't work in a hospital or elementary school or live with someone with severe asthma or COPD can take or leave the flu shot. Sometimes insurance doesn't cover the shot if you don't meet certain criteria.

    @Lumpyoatmeal- your mother may have referred to a GI illness as the flu but it was it wasn't influenza. Influenza a attacks your lungs and causes a systemic inflammatory response. So you get a cough, fever, runny nose and joint and muscle aches.
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    Sep 11, 2014 1:49 AM GMT
    Scruffypup saidI haven't had a flu shot in years and I never get the flu. However a few years ago I was at my doctor's office getting routine blood drawn and after she drew the blood I felt another prick. I said "what was that?" She informed me she just gave me a flu shot. I chewed her out and told her I never asked for a flu shot. And guess what...I got a very bad case of the flu that year.


    ..and so your conclusion is what? I take it you posted this for a reason.
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    Sep 11, 2014 6:52 PM GMT
    I can't wait till they get a vaccine developed for the H1Z1 strain.
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    Sep 12, 2014 1:39 AM GMT
    southbeach1500 saidI would rather not have Thimerosal injected into my body, thanks.


    Thimerasol won't hurt you. And if you're worried anyway get a single dose or the nasal version.

    http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/thimerosal.htm?mobile=nocontent
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    Sep 12, 2014 2:56 AM GMT
    meninlove said
    Scruffypup saidI haven't had a flu shot in years and I never get the flu. However a few years ago I was at my doctor's office getting routine blood drawn and after she drew the blood I felt another prick. I said "what was that?" She informed me she just gave me a flu shot. I chewed her out and told her I never asked for a flu shot. And guess what...I got a very bad case of the flu that year.


    ..and so your conclusion is what? I take it you posted this for a reason.


    I want to know if he took legal action because healthcare professionals can't give flu shots without a consent. Also, it's impossible to get sick from the flu shot given in a needle. The flu vaccination has been attenuated from a dead virus. So that dead virus can't come to life when it's reintroduced in the body.
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    Sep 12, 2014 3:38 AM GMT
    meninlove said
    Scruffypup saidI haven't had a flu shot in years and I never get the flu. However a few years ago I was at my doctor's office getting routine blood drawn and after she drew the blood I felt another prick. I said "what was that?" She informed me she just gave me a flu shot. I chewed her out and told her I never asked for a flu shot. And guess what...I got a very bad case of the flu that year.


    ..and so your conclusion is what? I take it you posted this for a reason.


    I posted it just to share my personal experience. People forget that personal experience over many years is quite valid. Why should I take a shot for something I never get except for the one time I got the shot?
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    Sep 12, 2014 3:45 AM GMT
    Erik101 said
    I want to know if he took legal action because healthcare professionals can't give flu shots without a consent. Also, it's impossible to get sick from the flu shot given in a needle. The flu vaccination has been attenuated from a dead virus. So that dead virus can't come to life when it's reintroduced in the body.

    It's true that when we had the flu shot last week we each had to sign a release form. I don't recall this always being the case. And we didn't in the US Army, where it was mandatory.

    Which brings me to one of my tedious anecdotes, so some of you can break off here. I was a Lt. Colonel, and checked on my office staff to see if they had taken their required flu shots, after numerous announcements.

    I was appalled to learn none of them had, offering more lame excuses than you could imagine. Come on, boys & girls, you're soldiers, even senior NCOs, what's this wimp-out routine you're pulling? (The commissioned officers had all already complied on their own)

    Well, I'd had enough. I told my Operations NCO to have a 15 passenger Army van outside our office the next day. When the van arrived I had my senior NCOIC order every enlisted soldier onto it. I rode along with them to the hospital. And personally observed everyone one of them get their flu shot, per mandatory DA Directive. You wanna be children, you get treated like children.

    And so on the way back I had the driver take a detour off post, to a very popular civilian ice cream stand. I treated everyone to ice cream at my expense. I told them this was their reward for getting their shots. Some of them realized the symbolism of my action.

    And yet a Sergeant naively asked me if there would be ice cream for taking next year's shots, too.

    "No, Sergeant," I replied, "the reward will be no court martial." Needless to say, a year later everyone got their flu shots on their own.

    To quote a line from Mel Brook's movie Blazing Saddles: "He's strict!"

    But that was what I was paid to do. And in our business contagious diseases were Combat Readiness detractors. Plus we had been given DA Directives, that weren't negotiable. We were soldiers, and if you didn't wanna play the game anymore, take off the uniform.

    And today I still see the wisdom of the flu shot, both for the individual and for the entire community. So that I view declining such protection as dangerous self-centered behavior, harmful to others.
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    Sep 14, 2014 6:16 AM GMT
    southbeach1500 saidI would rather not have Thimerosal injected into my body, thanks.

    There are Thimerosal-free flu shots.
  • Rhi_Bran

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    Sep 21, 2014 4:11 AM GMT
    Art_Deco said
    Rhi_Bran saidI've never once had the flu in my life...

    Your "life" is 24 years, according to your profile.


    Those quotes make that statement seem needlessly condescending. And just because I'm younger than you doesn't mean I don't intend to keep myself as healthy as possible as I age, thank you very much.

    And so you don't want to get the vaccine shot WHY? I still haven't heard a good justification yet. A lot of prevarication, but no convincing arguments.

    I'd like to hear some compelling arguments, backed up with facts, for not getting the flu shot.

    Well, some people like myself do not get the SHOT because of a mild to severe allergy to eggs - many standard flu vaccines are made with virus cultured in eggs and as such may contain egg proteins which we do not want to stick directly into our blood / lymphatic system. I personally get the nasal spray vaccine, although I used to get the shot because I've only recently developed an egg allergy (mostly due to eating 3-4 every day for the last year.... d'oh. I'm also allergic to bird dander.)