Fluvirin is vaccine against "the flu" (influenza). Influenza vaccination should be repeated each year before the start of the flu season, September to early November.
Fluvirin is a vaccine to help protect against the influenza virus in adults and children aged four years and over. Fluvirin is an inactivated vaccine that cannot cause "the flu" but stimulates the immune system to produce antibodies that protect against it. The full effect of the vaccine is generally achieved approximately 3 weeks after vaccination.
Fluvirin is available in an injectable form to be given directly into the muscle by a healthcare professional.
Common side effects include mild hypersensitivity reactions such as rash, local reactions at the injection site, and influenza-like symptoms such as fever, muscle aches, tiredness, headache, chills. These reactions are due to the immune system responding to the vaccine and are not flu. They usually disappear within one to two days without treatment.
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Uses of Fluvirin
Fluvirin is an inactivated influenza virus vaccine for persons 4 years of age and older against influenza virus disease caused by influenza virus.
Fluvirin is not indicated for children less than 4 years of age because there is evidence of diminished immune response in this age group.
This vaccine may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Fluvirin Drug Class
Fluvirin is part of the drug class:
Side Effects of Fluvirin
Serious side effects have been associated with Fluvirin. See the "Fluvirin Precautions" section.
Common side effects of Fluvirin include the following:
- Injection site reactions (redness, tenderness, swelling, etc.)
- Influenza type symptoms (fever, muscle aches, headache, tiredness, chills)
This is not a complete list of Fluvirin side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Inform your doctor if you have any side effects that bother you and do not go away.
Call your doctor about medical advice related to side effects. You may report side effects to VAERS at 1-800-822-7967.
Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:
- Irradiation therapy (radiation treatments)
- Any other live or inactive vaccine given in separate vial or syringe
- Immunosuppressive therapies such as prednisone, auto-Immune treatments such as etanercept (Enbrel), and chemotherapy such as capecitabine (Xeloda)
This is not a complete list of Fluvirin drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Serious side effects have been reported with Fluvirin, including the following:
- Guillain-Barré Syndrome (GBS). Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you have a history of GBS or any neurologic disorder including seizures. If Guillain-Barré syndrome has occurred within 6 weeks of receiving an influenza vaccine in the past, your doctor will determine if you should receive Fluvirin.
- Altered Immunity. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you have a suppressed immune system due to a current condition or medication therapy. If Fluvirin is administered to a person with a suppressed immune system, including individuals receiving immunosuppressive therapy, you may not get the best immune response. Tell your doctor if you are receiving immunosuppressive therapies such as prednisone, auto-Immune treatments such as etanercept (Enbrel), and chemotherapy such as capecitabine (Xeloda).
- Allergic Reactions: Tell your doctor if you are allergic to eggs or latex. Tell your doctor right away if you experience:
- Swelling of the face, tongue, or throat
- Trouble breathing
- Hives or bad rash
Do not receive Fluvirin vaccine if you:
- Have an allergy to eggs or to any inactive ingredient of the vaccine.
- Have ever had a life-threatening reaction to influenza vaccine.
Fluvirin Food Interactions
Medications can interact with certain foods in your diet. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid eating certain foods. In the case of Fluvirin, there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when receiving this vaccination.
Before receiving Fluvirin, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:
- Are allergic to eggs, any inactive ingredients in the vaccine or previous allergies to vaccines
- Have or have had an episode of Guillain-Barre Syndrome
- Are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
- Are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed
- A weakened immune system due to a current condition or medication therapy
Tell your doctor about all of the medications you take, including all prescription and non-prescription medicine, vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements.
Fluvirin and Pregnancy
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
The FDA categorizes medications based on safety for use during pregnancy. Five categories - A, B, C, D, and X, are used to classify the possible risks to an unborn baby when a medication is taken during pregnancy.
Fluvirin falls into category C. There are no well-controlled studies that have been done in pregnant women. Fluvirin should be used during pregnancy only if the possible benefit outweighs the possible risk to the unborn baby.
Fluvirin and Lactation
Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.
It is not known if Fluvirin crosses into human milk. Because many medications can cross into human milk and because of the possibility for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants with use of this medication, a choice should be made whether to stop nursing or stop the use of this medication. Your doctor and you will decide if the benefits outweigh the risk of using Fluvirin.
Fluvirin comes in an injectable form to be given directly into and the muscle by a healthcare professional.
The vaccine should be given each year before the start of the flu season (the best time to have it is from September to early November).
Children aged four to less than nine years who have not previously been vaccinated against flu should be given a second dose of the vaccine at least four weeks after their first vaccination.
Children who have previously had a flu vaccine only need one dose.
For adults and older children the vaccine is usually given as a single injection into the muscle of the upper arm.
Fluvirin is administered by a healthcare provider in a medical setting, therefore it is unlikely that an overdose will occur. However, if overdose is suspected, seek emergency medical attention.