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Flu
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ma9410 posted:
I'm prego and the doc says we both need to get a flu shot. Before I decide whether or not to get the shot, I want info about the tru flu and the flu shot.

We have many hesitations about me getting the flu shot, including:
1) I believe that you should let your immune system take care of things, and if after a few days you still feel cruddy then go to the doc or take something. (hubby and I both believe this) In other words, the fewer shots you get the better; getting sick and surviving it then carrying those genes on to future generations just makes healthier people. Women and babies survived thousand of years without a flu shot. Yes, infant mortality rate was higher then than now, but there are WAY more factors than just not getting a flu shot that go into that.
2) I will NOT be scared into getting the flu shot.
3) Hubby NEVER gets sick.
4) I sometimes get sick (diarrhea and/or puking) around the holidays, but after one or two miserable days I'm good to go. However, this is not the true flu (I do know what much). The true flu puts people in hospital.
5) Hubby will not be getting a flu shot, irregaurdless of whether I get one or not.
6) We don't like the fact that they inject a virus into you. (Right?) We also don't like that they more or less guess on which strand of the flu is going to be the most common for the year and vaccinate people with a shot for that strand, in a nutshell. (Right?)
7) Neither of us have ever had a flu shot, and never had planned on getting one.
My mom and my sisters never got a flu shot while pregnant. Their kids were all born between October and February, and every one of those kids was born healthy (and they still are).

I would just like info. from people that actually know what they are talking about. Again, I will not be scared into doing something, and telling me that we are horrible people if we don't get the flu shot won't convince me either.
Reply
 
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phoenix31674 responded:
Well, there are a couple of things to keep in mind.

1. When you are pregnant there are very few medications that are safe to take in pregnancy. No cough medicine most decongestants are out, expectorants are out. Basically Tylenol and you can try Benadryl, but I just had the flu and am breastfeeding and Benadryl did nothing to help with the excess of snot I had.

2. When is the baby due? If the baby is due in flu season, you should do everything in your power to protect your baby - and that means anyone who will be close to the baby needs to get the flu shot. There is a post on the parenting side of things about a mother whose six week old caught the flu last year. Her daughter spent 14 days in the hospital, 10 hooked up to an IV when the flu became pnuemonia. I'm not trying to scare you into it, I'm just pointing out what can happen when an infant does get the flu based on one mother's experience.

It is true the flu vaccine is a guess about what strains there are going to be, but they tend to be pretty accurate. When you get the injection it is a killed virus, so there is zero chance of it making you sick, but it will get your immune system to create an immunity for it.

Also keep in mind that this year's vaccine does have H1N1 in it. This is a strain of flu that disproportionately affects pregnant women. In 2009 when the outbreak was at it's worst, 28 pregnant women died from it in the US. Additionally women who catch that strain are 5 times more likely to have a stillbirth or baby born with fatal birth defects. While H1N1 is no longer pandemic, it's still out there.

In the end it is your decision, but just consider how you would manage the guilt if you or your husband were to bring the flu home and give it to your baby and your baby ended up in the hospital.

I had to get the flu shot when I was in the military. It's optional since I'm no longer in, but since we have small children, I get it every year. Sadly this year we caught the flu before the shots were available, but we'll still be getting shots this afternoon because there might be a different strain we didn't catch and DS at 1 year did not get H1N1 vaccinated. I do not wish even mild flu on anyone. We were down hard for a week and even 2 weeks after the worst we are not 100%.
 
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candy352 responded:
I understand how you feel about letting your immune system take care of things, but you should also remember that your immune system isn't like it was now since you're pregnant. I had the flu shot for the first time this year and it was right before I found out I was pregnant. I'm glad I got it taken care of then, because not only would my immune system be shot because of pregnancy but also because of diabetes. Also, when you get the flu, you get a fever, which raises the body temperature of the baby, which could become deadly. A flu shot is a personal choice though, but those are just my reasons for getting the shot.
 
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Byroney_WebMD_Staff responded:
Hello Ma9410!

Phoenix and Candy have shared some great personal experiences about getting the flu vaccine. Here's an article on the Flu Vaccine during Pregnancy , which may be helpful, too.

Ultimately, this is your decision and you should do what you feel comfortable with.

I hope good health finds all of you and your loved ones this winter,

Byroney
If high heels were so wonderful, men would still be wearing them. -Sue Grafton-


 
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ma9410 responded:
Thank you for your responses so far. I would like a doctor's explanaition though, on here. To my understanding the flu shot only covers the very serious flu that lands people in the hospital, which I have never had before, and what people typically call the flu isn't the true flu at all. <--- This is my biggest thing.

I only ever take Tylenol or Sudafed anyways, and both of these are safe to take during pregnancy.

I'm due Christmas Day. My neice was born in Nov. 2009 and the other in Dec. 2008. They never got any serious illness. My mom, sisters, nephew, and I were all born during flu season as well and nothing happened to us.

Like I said, I'd really like a doctor on here to tell me more about it.
 
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ma9410 responded:
I guess one can call me a skeptic, about everything.
 
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Byroney_WebMD_Staff replied to ma9410's response:
Ma,

Here is Dr. Atlas's response to another member Asking About the Flu Shot . It's only two weeks old, so it's very recent. If you have further questions, I'd suggest talking more with your own doctor.

It's smart for you to ask questions and look into things so you can make an informed decision. I'm sure this discussion will help many others who have the same concerns.

My best,

Byroney
If high heels were so wonderful, men would still be wearing them. -Sue Grafton-




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