Flu Mist is 'OK' for Young Children

By: Jummy Olabanji Email
By: Jummy Olabanji Email

February 19, 2007

A recent study released by the New England Journal shows there's an even better, painless way to protect your kids from the flu, but with no needles involved.

"The nice thing about the live one is its just a couple of drops of the vaccine up your nose. No shots," said Dr. Bill Petri, Chief of infectious disease at UVA.

This Flu Mist vaccine has already been proved to be as affective as the flu shot in adults.

"What's exciting about the report was that this live vaccine was proven to be much more effective in preventing influenza in young children. That's important because children under the age of five run the risk of being in the hospital or having to go to the doctors office with severe influenza, so its important to try to prevent flu in children under the age of five," said Dr. Petri.

Even with these new results, it is important for parents to realize that the FDA still needs to sign off on this study before it's safe for your youngster.

Even once its approved, Dr. Petri says it may not be safe for every child.

"From six months to twelve months of age, there was more wheezing as a response to the live vaccine," said Dr. Petri.

Doctor's also say children should get vaccinated, no matter which form it is.

"There's two really good reasons for doing that, one is to prevent them from having a severe attack
of the flu and the second to prevent their grandparents from getting infected from the children," said Dr. Petri.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, Virginia is one of about fifteen states with regional flu activity.

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