Winter time is flu time. Even if the real flu has lost some of its explosiveness because it was confused with the much less dangerous flu-like infection, it is still one of the most dangerous diseases that recur every year and can be fatal. The Flu shot.
Doctors recommend that the risk groups of people over 50, children up to seven years of age, pregnant women, the chronically ill and people with an immune deficiency should protect themselves with a flu vaccination in good time.
Every year doctors ask patients into their practices to give them the annual Flu shot to administer. The background to this measure is to protect patients from influenza, which is also popularly known as the flu.
In this respect, it is necessary to differentiate from the common (flu-like) cold, which is often confused with the real flu. The difference is not only that common flu has a different virus from influenza viruses, but also that real influenza is far more dangerous, if not life-threatening, to humans.
Even healthy adults can develop extremely severe symptoms when infected with influenza. For some risk groups with a fundamentally weakened immune system, the viruses, if the immune system cannot recognize them in time and fight them successfully, weaken the organism in such a way that death is associated. Statistically speaking, 1,000 people die of influenza every year in Austria alone.
Protection would be very easy. With a flu shot, symptoms cannot develop even if the pathogen has already entered the body. Because of the danger of flu-causing viruses, doctors especially recommend that risk groups of over 50 years of age, children up to seven years of age, pregnant women, the chronically ill and people with an immunodeficiency (e.g. HIV-positive) get a flu vaccination in good time protect the seasonal influenza.
goal of Flu shot is to prepare the immune system for a possible infection. For this purpose, the vaccine contains "dead" virus particles, which is why the active ingredient of the flu vaccination is also known as the "dead vaccine". In this way, the immune system gets to know the pathogen and triggers immune reactions.
The aim is for the immune system to remember its shape by getting to know the virus. If there is an emergency later, that is, an infection with a real flu virus, the immune system remembers its shape more quickly. The faster detection means that the pathogen can be combated more quickly before the virus can spread in the person's body and trigger symptoms.
Due to the preventive nature of the flu vaccination, the patient not only protects himself but also others, since he himself is no longer an option as a virus carrier.
The flu vaccination must be refreshed annually. The reason for this is that the virus is constantly changing through natural mutation throughout the year. So that the immune system is always "up to date", he has to get to know the virus shape every year through a flu vaccination.
The vaccine itself is injected into the deltoid muscles of the upper arm using a syringe. In patients with bleeding disorders, the vaccine can alternatively be injected under the skin instead of in the muscles. In any case, the vaccine does not reach its full effectiveness until two to three weeks after the injection. Children also need to receive two injections one month apart when they get their first flu shot, while a single injection is sufficient for adults.
Side effects are at one for adults Flu shot Usually not to be feared except for slight reddening at the injection site. The immune response varies depending on the specific constitution of the immune system.
With particularly strong immune reactions, typical symptoms such as fever and headache can appear as side effects of the flu vaccination. Despite their general harmlessness, there are a number of risk groups for whom a flu vaccination is not recommended.
Mainly these are people who are allergic to chicken protein, a component of the flu vaccination. People with an acute fever are also recommended to postpone the flu vaccination at least until the (fever) symptoms have subsided.