Preparing for flu season

With flu cases already circulating, Dr. Pedro Piedra, professor of molecular virology and microbiology and of pediatrics at Baylor, stresses the importance of getting your flu shot sooner rather than later.

“It surprises me to see flu cases already because we’re just in early September and normally we start to see flu a little bit later,” Piedra said. “I don’t know if this is an early sign about what is in store this flu season, but it is a sign that we need to put vaccines on our horizon.”

Now is the time to get your flu shot. All influenza vaccines available in the U.S. this year will be quadrivalent vaccines containing two strains of influenza A (H3N2 and H1N1) and two strains of Influenza B (B Victoria and B Yamagata). The live attenuated nasal influenza vaccine, FluMist, is available for healthy adults and children between the ages of 2 and 49. For individuals over the age of 65, vaccines with higher antigen content or an adjuvant are available, as older adults need a slightly more potent vaccine to protect against influenza. Pregnant women can get the inactivated flu shot at any stage of their pregnancy and are encouraged to get vaccinated during the early months of life.

Learn about Baylor Medicine primary care.

By Anna Kiappes

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