Rheumatoid Arthritis

Flu shots and RA

In this episode, Clint talks about his recommendation and personal experience on Flu shots.

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Well, I’ve always been nervous about having flu shots for that exact reason for myself personally. And in fact, earlier this year, in January going back, what, 10, 11 months. I had a flu shot for the very first time against my will. And the reason is we came to the states to complete my immigration process for my green card, and as part of that, everyone has to have a flu shot to be administered the green card. Now, my skepticism is probably at a sky high sort of reading right now, because I don’t know why the US regulations think that it’s unsafe for a person to be able to be administered a green card in the US unless they’ve had a flu shot. As if the flu shot is the most worrisome thing that a human could bring to their country. You know, as someone who hasn’t had a flu shot, I’ve had the same concerns, I work very hard to not introduce things to myself that could be troublesome for my immune system. As it turns out, it did absolutely nothing. In my particular case, I saw no ill effects at all either from a fatigue or any anything whatsoever and certainly nothing in terms of an inflammation response. So that’s my initial response.

And then the second part of that is I don’t think the studies suitably support the risk benefit of taking a flu shot when you have an autoimmune disease. So, I can’t quote any of the statistics offhand, so I’m only speaking just of my memory. But I don’t remember the statistics being that if you get a flu shot, you are therefore 80% likely not to get the flu that flu season, I don’t think the stats are anything like that, I believe that last time I checked, it was fairly marginal. And what happens is each year, flu strains change and so the vaccine that they create for this year then prevents you from the one that happened previously. And yet the next one comes around and it’s different, and you’re not you’re not immunized against the new strain. So you’re always one year behind, and I find the whole system to personally be a little bit insulting to the human intelligence of being able to minimize getting sick by simply doing all the things that as a group we know that we should be doing for our health.

So big summary is I’m not going to be encouraging them for anyone in our family. And I am not going to ever well, at the moment have no plans on getting one again myself unless I have to as I was made to this year. But, you know, these things are very controversial and make up your your own judgment based on that information, and your own research.

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