Get your flu shot

Published 8:42 pm Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Flu season is approaching, at that means it’s time to get those flu shots.

For less than $30, residents can get a shot that should keep the flu away. Doctor’s offices and pharmacies all over Suffolk provide the shots, which are covered by Medicare parts A and B.

This year’s flu vaccine will contain three viral strains: influenza A H3N2, influenza B and the 2009 version of H1N1.

The Centers for Disease Control recommends that everyone six months of age or older get vaccinated. Those at high risk for flu include young children, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions and those 65 and older.

New research indicates the vaccine might lower your risk of a heart attack. Adults 40 and older who get flu shots appear to be less likely to have a heart attack the following year, according to a study published Monday in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

Researchers compared the medical records of more than 16,000 first-time heart attack patients to those of 63,000 people with no heart attack history. After accounting for risk factors like smoking, high blood pressure and diabetes, people who got a flu shot were 19 percent less likely to suffer a first-time heart attack over the next year, compared to those who skipped the shot.

So there’s another reason to get a flu shot, perhaps even a better reason than normal.

Take care of it now, before it’s too late.

– The Tidewater News