Should we get vaccinated?

Should anyone who can do so get vaccinated against H1N1?

  • Yes.

    Votes: 19 46.3%
  • No.

    Votes: 16 39.0%
  • It's not as simple as that.

    Votes: 6 14.6%

  • Total voters
    41
  • #1
DaveC426913
Gold Member
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Simple question:
Do you believe everyone who can do so should get vaccinated, or no?
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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Simple question:
Do you believe everyone who can do so should get vaccinated, or no?
Only if you have stocks in the company producing the vaccines.
 
  • #3
Evo
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Yes, you should get vaccintaed. I get vaccinated every year and do not get sick.

Like I said in another thread, even if you personally don't care if you get the flu, you could infect someone that could die from it.

My employer offers free vaccinations in our office evey year, and no one gets sick. this year, due to the media hype, that had to order thousands of extra vaccines because they maxed out on the appointments so quickly.

I'd like people that vote no to say why.

Are you afraid of getting vaccinated, and if yes, why are you afraid?
 
Last edited:
  • #4
lisab
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I recently had H1N1, I think. It wasn't severe at all, in my case. I missed two days of work.

But as far as I know, I've never had the seasonal flu. Everyone I know who has had it (the real thing, not a cold or food poisoning) says it's just horrible, aches and pains and fever for many days, sometimes over a week.

A few years ago a coworker was on chemo, and we were asked to get a seasonal flu vaccination (voluntarily). So I did, of course, and with no ill effects.

I get one every year now. Perhaps I'll get through my whole life and never get the flu :smile:.
 
  • #5
Moonbear
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If you work in a healthcare setting, around children, have any susceptibility of respiratory illnesses (asthma, smoker, past history of pneumonia after flu), then definitely get vaccinated. If you are otherwise healthy, it's optional, and might be best to leave the vaccine available to those who need it more. There are some issues for those who may be immuno-compromised, and should discuss it with a physician. They're more susceptible to catching flu and having serious complications, but also are susceptible to serious complications from the vaccination too. If you have an egg allergy, absolutely do not get it (the vaccines are still made in eggs).

To me, the risk of an adverse reaction to the vaccination (and there is always a risk) needs to be carefully weighed against the risk of developing the illness or serious complications from it.

That, and the vaccine isn't even available here yet, and my students already are spreading the H1N1 flu around, so I figure by the time it's available, it'll be a waste of time and money...I'll either have had the flu, or been exposed and be immune from exposure. I think they're distributing it to health and EMS workers first.

Evo, your anectdotal evidence is only that. I have NEVER gotten a seasonal flu vaccine, and also have not gotten sick with seasonal flu. Most of us already have immunity to a lot of flus just from all of our childhood exposures.
 
  • #6
DaveC426913
Gold Member
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I'd like people that vote no to say why.
It's over-hyped - a knee-jerk reaction. It's just the flu. Hundreds of people die every year from flu yet they are not hyped like this.
 
  • #7
Evo
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It's over-hyped - a knee-jerk reaction. It's just the flu. Hundreds of people die every year from flu yet they are not hyped like this.
I absolutely agree that this flu is over hyped, see my posts here https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=348634

At the same time, I think getting a flu shot, if you are not allergic, is a smart thing to do. When I switched companies I found it odd that almost no one gets sick in the winter, then I found out two years later that almost everyone that works there gets flu shots. Now I get them too.
 
  • #8
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Sure, if you want to get a Microsoft funded CIA super-duper drug company microchip installed in your brain through your blood stream (yes Windows 7 is that good apparently) so our evil lizard crocodile overlords can monitor you from their evil-inside-dormant-volcano-castle™ (*death lasers sold separately), then go ahead!

On a more serious note I will be getting the vaccine when I can, news channels reports it's just hit Norway kind of big.
 
  • #9
259
3
I am still a teenager so I still have an irrational shot-phobia.

I will not get it as long as I can still convince my mom that "the H1N1 vaccine will have a 100% chance of causing AIDS."
 
  • #10
378
2
It's over-hyped - a knee-jerk reaction. It's just the flu. Hundreds of people die every year from flu yet they are not hyped like this.
but then there was Spanish Flu
 
  • #11
Evo
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To me, the risk of an adverse reaction to the vaccination (and there is always a risk) needs to be carefully weighed against the risk of developing the illness or serious complications from it..
Isn't the risk of problems from the flu actually higher than the risk of serious adverse reactions to the vaccine?
 
  • #12
918
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I'm getting the vaccine. I figure at my age what's the chance I'll become autistic?
 
  • #13
Moonbear
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Isn't the risk of problems from the flu actually higher than the risk of serious adverse reactions to the vaccine?
No, because the flu going around is actually very mild. The incidence of severe complications is low, even if the media is hyping it as something more than that. Keep in mind that one of the vaccines being used is a nasal spray which is a LIVE vaccine, not an attenuated vaccine. In many areas, it's the only version of the vaccine available. There is a risk that the live vaccine itself can infect you with the flu, especially if you are in one of the at-risk populations.

Now, in the other thread, you mentioned the risk of spreading flu to someone who is more susceptible, and that is why health care workers are being asked to get vaccinated, as is anyone who works or lives with someone susceptible. But, the best thing anyone can do to avoid infecting anyone else is just to stay home if they think they have flu, and not return until they are cleared by a doctor. And, it is helpful if employers are reasonable about their sick time policies and allow any employees who need to stay home longer to do so. As I'm telling my students, if they get sick, the first thing they need to do is get better. If they feel better but aren't cleared to return to classes yet, and want to get caught up from home, I'm helping them get make-up work by email. If necessary, I'll give them incompletes so they have extra time to catch up if they are out for an extended time and can't catch up before the end of the semester (though, I think they are getting more studying done while stuck home in bed than when they are well and running around socializing).

If it was the swine flu I caught this summer, the biggest reason it's going to spread easily is that it doesn't make you all that sick. That means people are more likely to keep going to work while they have it, and just think they have a cold rather than flu. And, more people will catch it this year because it's different enough from other flus that most people don't already have immunity.
 
  • #14
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1
I knew there is a potential for a reaction to the seasonal flu vaccination, but it's a killed virus. It's my understanding (and of course there's a very good chance I'm entirely wrong) that contracting the disease from the inoculation doesn't happen. I got the seasonal flu shot last year because I was travelling out of country during flu season and our Travel Health Clinic recommended it. I got the seasonal flu shot this year because one of my co-workers is receiving chemo treatments and we're asking everyone in the office to do their best to take extra precautions because he has a compromised immune system. (We even managed to get our building to install hand sanitiser dispensers at the front and back doors of the building.)

And, we'll all get H1N1 vaccination too. It just got approved in Canada this past week, and they're asking healthy people to hold off until high-risk people get their shots first.

All flu shots are free to everyone this year. Generally they're free to high risk people, and we other folks pay for ours. There was a loophole to that, though, where all you had to do was say you were around high-risk people and you'd get your shot for free. I paid for mine. I don't mind contributing.

But should you get it? My GP always argued, no, that perfectly healthy people should not. He was high-risk being a GP and all, and he didn't get flu shots, because he wanted his body to develop its own immunities to the bugs. He didn't ever catch the flu in the eighteen years I've known him. I haven't ever had a flu shot prior to last year either and not had problems. A couple of friends of mine, who didn't get flu shots last year, and got the flu and said they wished someone would have put them out of their misery. I guess the muscle/joint/bone pain is pretty incredible. So, I don't know. There's a load of anecdotal evidence in both directions. And, with the seasonal flu shot, they're only guessing at which few pose the greatest risk any given year but don't always guess right, and a totally different strain takes off like mad.

H1N1, though, they do know is circulating and, while it's no worse than any other in terms of the effects of it, it has already crossed back from humans to pigs once again. So getting some relatively safe exposure to help build immunity before it mutates and crosses species yet again (if it hasn't already) is likely a good plan. And the more people who have immunity to a particular disease, the better off we all are, because then, even the people who aren't inoculated benefit from herd immunity.

I can't say I'm yet a believer in the seasonal flu vaccination, because there are too many variables in terms of what may or may not hit. (Plus, I get wicked swelling in my arm from that shot that makes me whine a great deal.) But I think a H1N1 shot is a good plan because it is one specific disease we know is behaving weirdly and we need to give the most vulnerable in our populations the most help and best chance we can.
 
  • #15
Moonbear
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I'm getting the vaccine. I figure at my age what's the chance I'll become autistic?
Actually, I have a friend with autistic children who is really struggling with whether to get them the vaccine or not. They have very altered immune systems, and have severe reactions to vaccinations. But, they are also in one of the populations of high risk for complications from the swine flu. We were just talking about this the other day. She said that she's not surprised people believe vaccines cause autism if they didn't notice the autism before the childhood vaccines were given. Her children were already clearly demonstrating signs of autism prior to any childhood vaccines, but had severe and bizarre reactions to the vaccines that set them back..so bad she thought one of them had a stroke. She has been looking into it, because her kids have unusual immune cells always present whenever they have blood draws for anything, and it seems this is very common in autistics. So, she always very carefully weighs the risk of severe illness against the almost certain severe reactions to vaccination before allowing any vaccinations now.
 
  • #16
Moonbear
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And, we'll all get H1N1 vaccination too. It just got approved in Canada this past week, and they're asking healthy people to hold off until high-risk people get their shots first.
Note that the primary seasonal flu this year is also an H1N1 virus. It gets very confusing. The CDC is calling the seasonal one "Seasonal H1N1" and the swine flu "2009 H1N1." I don't think that makes it much less confusing, since both are going around in 2009.

I just don't have a lot of confidence in the seasonal vaccines, partly because they are guessing every year, and partly because they need to give it every year. It seems that if you've gotten a bout of flu, you have immunity for a long time, yet the vaccine doesn't seem to provide that long term immunity that people need to keep getting it annually. With the swine flu vaccine, at least they know it's protecting against the actual virus going around, not just a guess at what one might go around.

One of my parents' friends is on immunosuppressants following a lung transplant. She's in one of those very high risk categories, so gets the flu vaccine every year, and then every year spends a week being sick from the reaction to the vaccine. I have to really think long and hard about how a vaccine would work in someone with a suppressed immune system, though, because I would think the immunosuppression would prevent the vaccine from doing anything.
 
  • #17
918
16
Actually, I have a friend with autistic children who is really struggling with whether to get them the vaccine or not.
Is she afraid they'll become even more autistic? The vaccine-autism link is so well known to be a deliberate fraud that the only people still pushing it are those whose 15 minutes are up and they can't let go.
 
  • #18
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But should you get it? My GP always argued, no, that perfectly healthy people should not. He was high-risk being a GP and all, and he didn't get flu shots, because he wanted his body to develop its own immunities to the bugs. He didn't ever catch the flu in the eighteen years I've known him.
I would recommend getting a new GP. One who uses evidence and science based medicine, and doesn't put his patients at risk.
 
  • #19
OmCheeto
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If you work in a healthcare setting, around children, have any susceptibility of respiratory illnesses (asthma, smoker, past history of pneumonia after flu), then definitely get vaccinated. If you are otherwise healthy, it's optional, and might be best to leave the vaccine available to those who need it more. .......
I agree, but you forgot one group:

http://www.capitalpress.com/orewash/TH-h1n1-102309-infobox" [Broken]
Updated: Saturday, October 24, 2009 11:03 AM
H1N1 in pigs was inevitable, producers say
Industry reiterates that meat even from diseased swine is safe
By TIM HEARDEN
Capital Press

Now that the H1N1 virus has been detected in at least one pig shown at the Minnesota State Fair, the U.S. pork industry is taking the development in stride -- and hoping everyone else will, too.
Poor pigs.... :frown:

From the http://www.health.gov.on.ca/english/providers/program/pubhealth/flu/flu_09/bulletins/flu_bul_01_20091023.pdf" [Broken] from the other thread:

Among the 28 confirmed cases that have died, 25 (89%) had underlying chronic medical conditions reported,.....

Among cases that are currently or have previously been hospitalized, a number of underlying medical conditions have been reported, including but not limited to diabetes, cardiovascular conditions, renal conditions and pulmonary conditions.
humans that is.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • #20
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I just don't have a lot of confidence in the seasonal vaccines, partly because they are guessing every year, and partly because they need to give it every year. It seems that if you've gotten a bout of flu, you have immunity for a long time, yet the vaccine doesn't seem to provide that long term immunity that people need to keep getting it annually. With the swine flu vaccine, at least they know it's protecting against the actual virus going around, not just a guess at what one might go around.
That's what I was trying to say, Moonbie. The seasonal vaccine is a studied guess that I haven't ever had much confidence in, but H1N1 is different.

Here, as best I know, we're getting the regular flu vaccine and H1N1 all by itself. The regular vaccine has already long been out (although there's a huge push this year to get as many people vaccinated as possible with loads, and loads of flu shot clinics opening up everywhere) and we've already got the shot. People I know are now all waiting the requisite time period before going for H1N1, which was only approved this week at any rate.

I would recommend getting a new GP. One who uses evidence and science based medicine, and doesn't put his patients at risk.
He didn't. And he's one of the most brilliant diagnosticians I've ever met; the breadth of his knowledge on all things medical -- including less-than-conventional stuff -- along with his diligence to remain as absolutely current as he can in terms of information and new developments has made him the very best doctor I've had in my life. He has, for the 17 years I've known him, been nothing but stellar.
 
  • #21
Monique
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I have to really think long and hard about how a vaccine would work in someone with a suppressed immune system, though, because I would think the immunosuppression would prevent the vaccine from doing anything.
That's true, it's the same with elderly people who don't have a well-working immune system: they don't build up long-term immunity with one shot. The Netherlands is going to give these immunocompromised groups a second 'booster' shot of the vaccine, because otherwise you might as well not vaccinate them at all.
 
  • #22
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If the virus mutates enough the vac will have been worthless I believe anyone know if this is correct or not?
 
  • #23
BobG
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Yes, you should get vaccintaed. I get vaccinated every year and do not get sick.

Like I said in another thread, even if you personally don't care if you get the flu, you could infect someone that could die from it.

My employer offers free vaccinations in our office evey year, and no one gets sick. this year, due to the media hype, that had to order thousands of extra vaccines because they maxed out on the appointments so quickly.

I'd like people that vote no to say why.

Are you afraid of getting vaccinated, and if yes, why are you afraid?
I avoid flu vaccinations like the plague and March 2008 was the first time I missed a day of work/school because of illness since March 1970 (neither were the flu).

Why am I afraid of flu shots? Because they're different each year. I assume they've been tested and are mostly safe, but no one puts out products with a 100% flawless rate (Avandria, Paxil, Vioxx, Fen Phen, among others). While the chance of any vaccine being harmful is very small, the more different drugs you ingest, the larger the chance of getting a harmful one.

I think it's a good idea to limit all drug use (including vaccines) only to those drugs that you have an actual need for. I rarely get sick and recover quickly when I do (colds, etc). I don't consider myself to carry much risk of dying from the flu.

Even more importantly, shots hurt.
 
  • #24
russ_watters
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Simple question:
Do you believe everyone who can do so should get vaccinated, or no?
I do, but I don't care enough to take the time out of my day to do it.
 
  • #25
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If the virus mutates enough the vac will have been worthless I believe anyone know if this is correct or not?
Yes, this is exactly what happens and is why there are new flu vaccines every year. Your flu shot from 2 years ago is going to do nothing against the modern strains that exist now. And probably within a year, the main flu virus going around now will then mutate into something else which you will need another new vaccine for.


I personally never get flu shots anymore. The only time I've ever been severely ill from a flu virus was actually when I got a flu shot. Since I stopped getting them, I've stopped getting sick. I of course don't recommend this for everyone though. Some people do need to get vaccinated, its just not for me.
 

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