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Flu Vaccine Safety

Flu shots at Phelps Health

Published on October 19, 2020

Information Provided by Cory Offutt, MD, Phelps Health Medical Group and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

How do I know the flu vaccine – or any vaccine – is safe?

According to the CDC, vaccines are among the safest medical products available, and scientists are continually working to ensure they are made even safer.

Are there any side effects of getting a flu vaccine?

Some common side effects of vaccines include a sore arm or fever. There is a small risk that serious problems could occur after getting a vaccine. However, the potential risks from the diseases vaccines prevent are much greater than the potential risks associated with the vaccines themselves.

Are there signs/symptoms that should cause concern after getting a flu vaccine?

After receiving a flu vaccine, your body goes through a natural inflammatory response to being exposed to something new. Most symptoms are mild and should only last for a couple of days.

Are there certain people who should NOT get a flu vaccine?

The CDC recommends that anyone under the age of 6 months should not get the flu vaccine.

I heard eggs are used in the flu vaccine. What if I am allergic to eggs?

According to the CDC, people with a history of egg allergy of any severity should still receive a flu vaccine. People with a severe allergic reaction to eggs should be vaccinated in an inpatient or outpatient medical setting under the supervision of a health professional who can recognize and manage severe allergic conditions.

What if I have been diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome?

If you have ever had a diagnosis of Guillain-Barré syndrome, you will need to speak with your provider before getting the flu vaccine because you may be ineligible.

Should I get a flu vaccine if I am currently sick?

If you are sick with a cold or other mild illness and you do not have a fever, you can still get a flu vaccine.

Learn more about flu vaccines

Dr. Cory Offutt, a family medicine physician with the Phelps Health Medical Group, says vaccines are important because they protect people with weaker immune systems, as well as the community as a whole.

Found in: Family Medicine Flu Health Health Influenza Vaccinations Wellness