A look at pros and cons of flu shots

Home Archived Opinion A look at pros and cons of flu shots

Sahara Locke

Published: October 25, 2006

Flu season is once again upon us and whether or not people will take the recommended but often dreaded flu shot remains to be seen.

For years doctors have pushed the flu shot as a way to prevent one of the most irritating and in some cases, even fatally contagious virus that is often accompanied by high fever, muscle aches, a cough, tiredness and headaches.

The flu shot, as with anything of intrinsic value, has its own pros and cons, no matter how much people believe that it is utterly and completely necessary for flu prevention.

The flu shot does carry certain side effects.  According to WebMD, the shot can trigger achy muscles and a low fever.  On the up side, the flu shot can prevent hospitalization and death for the elderly, pregnant women, and infants who are highly susceptible during flu season.

There is still a possibility that even though someone takes the shot that they could still get the flu.  In addition, the shot uses mercury to prevent bacterial contamination, but mercury has its own downsides as being toxic to the brain and nerve cells.

People with chicken and egg protein or gelatin allergies or anyone who has ever suffered a severe reaction to any previous influenza shot are cautioned not to have the shot.

The Center for Disease Control recommends that elderly over the age of 65, those living in a nursing home, childcare workers, women who will be pregnant during flu season and those who work in healthcare receive the flu shot each year.

Flu shots are offered beginning Nov. 6 at all three campuses and are $20 for employees and $25 for students and the general public..  For more information call 484-1322.

When everything is said and done it still remains the choice of those who are contemplating getting the shot to weigh the pros and cons and decide once again for another flu season whether they will or will not get the shot.

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