NFR Flu Shots – yes or no?

Trapper

ISO brown liquor and wild salmonoids
#1
Every year my Primary Doc asks me if I want a flu shot. The VA hospital where I get my health care has signs on the road in and all over the outpatient and inpatient areas. Every year I've declined largely because in the winter time I'm virtually never in contact with Petri dishes (aka little kids). I haven't had the flu in over 30 years.

Last year I read the flu vaccine was only about 40% effective and virtually useless against the really nasty strain.

I know that everything you stick in your body has a side effect. My sister gets a shot every year even though she always gets mild flu symptoms; headache, fever, nausea, muscle aches. While I don't hear about people dying from getting a flu shot, what side effects have people experienced?
 

Trapper

ISO brown liquor and wild salmonoids
#4
Hell no on the flu shot. The army made me get one back in the 90s under duress- "take the shot L.T. or else....... :(
Wow! They actually TOLD you what they were injecting you with? In Navy bootcamp we lined up and walked through a gauntlet where ungloved and untrained guys hit you with an airgun. The deck was sticky from blood.

This was before AIDS/HIV but it wasn’t before Hepatitis.

Maybe because you were an officer?
 

Greg Smith

Active Member
#5
I'm back to getting one now. The older vaccines used to make a little sick, but the new ones don't bother me at all. Some times the vaccines aren't 100% effective, but they tend to lessen the severity of the flu. You may gotten away without shots, but these vaccines are evolving and your luck may run out. Also, you may become a carrier and cause others to become sick. If you never touch a shopping cart or handle any merchandise in a store, you may stay lucky.

Greg
 
#7
I always get one. The only side effects I get are a sore arm and I feel a little achy. Side effects vary from person to person. Some people feel junky, others have absolutely zero issues.

I think its worth it. Having the flu sucks, and I really don't want to miss work unless I'm purposefully taking the time off to fish or doing something fun with the family. I don't want to be sick at home. Yes, they guess what strains of flu will be most prevalent, and yes, sometimes they guess wrong. Still, 40% effective against some strains is better than 0% against all of them. You are also decreasing the chance you will give the flu to someone else.
 

Smalma

Active Member
#8
yes -

All the information is the vaccine is not entirely effective; typically between 19 and 60%. Recent estimate for the 2017 vaccine was that it was 36% effective in preventing the flu. Remember that the estimate for 2017 that 80,000 folks in the US died from the flu.

Curt
 
#10
Wow! They actually TOLD you what they were injecting you with? In Navy bootcamp we lined up and walked through a gauntlet where ungloved and untrained guys hit you with an airgun. The deck was sticky from blood.

This was before AIDS/HIV but it wasn’t before Hepatitis.

Maybe because you were an officer?
It was at Fort Rucker and the flight surgeons and flight medics were a little more casual than the basic training medical folks I'm sure. Don't get me wrong, if I would have said "no way" there would have been hell to pay. :D
 

GAT

Dumbfounded
#11
I have chronic asthma so I don't have a choice. They don't always seem to help but I do know if I do get sick it isn't as bad as it could be so they must have some positive effect. I'll get my yearly shot this month.
 

JayB

Active Member
#13
There's an ethical component to belief that comes into play in discussions like this that rarely gets brought up. It's hard to bring up without coming across as preachy and tedious, but hey - it's The Internet - so that's the coin of the realm most of the time anyway.

There's a great old book out there called "The Ethics of Belief" that has a story about a man who operates a commercial ferry service. When the inspector comes to evaluate his ship, he finds enough objective problems with the boat to conclusively determine that it is no longer seaworthy and mustn't leave the dock with passengers aboard until the problems he identified are fixed. The owner sees the report, and the boat, but sincerely believes that the boat is safe and has it set sail with a full load of passengers, all of whom die when the boat sinks en route.

Is the man guilty if he sincerely believed that the boat was safe? According to the author of the book, the answer is a categorical "yes." Why? Because there was no defensible basis for believing that it was seaworthy.

At this point there's also no defensible basis for refusing a flu vaccine on the basis of the risks to your personal health. There hasn't been for many decades. Ditto for believing that you aren't amplifying the risks of lethal infections for others by refusing to get vaccinated. You may be such a strapping fellow that the worst flu symptoms that you get are a case of the sniffles so mild that you mistake it for a run-of-the-mill cold, but you can pass that same virus to a baby, an elderly person, or a cancer patient, or anyone else with a physiological vulnerability and that same virus can put them in the ground. You have the right to refuse to get vaccinated, but there's no defensible basis for pretending that the ethical implications of that choice don't exist.
 

steelydan

Newb seeking wisdom
#15
I got a flu shot ONE TIME.
Two weeks later, I got the worst flu of my life and was sick for over two weeks.
Coincidence?
Maybe, but the correlation is hard to ignore.
I get flu once or twice a year...Feel like shit for two days, gradually get better.
Two years ago, I got hammered...Spent two days in bed.
I consider getting flu a normal part of life and am somewhat dubious re claims that a vaccine is a preventative.
Maybe I'm just stubborn?
 

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