Children who get the annual flu vaccine, especially those who have asthma, may be more likely to be hospitalized than children who don’t get the shot, a new study shows. But the researcher noted … “This may not be a reflection of the vaccine but that these patients are the sickest, and their doctors insist they get a vaccination,” said study author Dr. Avni Y. Joshi, a fellow at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. “I would be very cautious about interpreting this,” said Dr. Gurjit Khurana Hershey, director of asthma research and professor of pediatrics at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. “The bottom line is that kids with asthma who get the flu vaccine are probably a different population anyway. They may be the more severely ill children, so it may have very little to do with the vaccine.” The study has too many unknowns and covers too wide an age range over too many flu seasons to indicate any change in recommendations, said Dr. Hank Bernstein, a member of the committee on infectious diseases of the American Academy of Pediatrics. The authors looked back at 263 children aged 6 months to 18 years who had visited the Mayo Clinic between 1999 and 2006 with laboratory-confirmed influenza. Children — including children who had asthma — who received the annual inactivated flu vaccine were almost three times more likely to be hospitalized than those who were not inoculated.
Note: With hospitalization rates nearly three times that of children who did not get vaccinated, why are these doctors downplaying this study so much? Why the focus on asthma, when the study covered a wide range of children? Why isn’t anyone calling for more research on these striking results? For lots of articles raising serious questions about the safety of vaccines, click here.