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Influvac (Influenza-vaccine) belongs to a group of medications known as vaccines. It is used to prevent Influenza (the flu).
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Influvac (Influenza-vaccine) belongs to a group of medications known as vaccines. It is used to prevent Influenza (the flu). Influenza is a common viral illness caused by 2 types of virus: influenza A and influenza B.
Each year, different strains (new, slightly different versions of the virus) appear. Scientists predict which strains will be most likely for the coming year, and then these strains are used to make up the year's influenza vaccine. Each year's influenza vaccine contains 3 to 4 virus strains that are likely to circulate in Canada in the coming winter. The vaccine only provides protection against the strains of flu virus used to prepare the vaccine.
It usually takes 2 to 3 weeks for the protection against these viruses to be effective, and the protection lasts for 6 to 12 months. Annual vaccination is necessary to make sure you are covered for the new virus strains that are expected each year.
The vaccine increases a person's defenses against the influenza virus. It works by introducing very small amounts of viral components (parts) into the body. These components are enough to stimulate the production of antibodies (cells designed to attack that particular virus), which will remain in the body ready to attack that same virus in the future. The vaccine is used to prevent influenza for people over 6 months of age who want to reduce their chances of getting the flu.
The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) recommends annual vaccination for:
Your doctor may have suggested this vaccine for conditions other than the ones listed in these drug information articles. If you have not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are receiving this vaccine, speak to your doctor.
We sort your medication into clearly labeled, individual packs so you can be sure you're taking the right dose at the right time.
The influenza vaccine is given once a year, usually in October or November, as an injection into a muscle (usually on the upper arm). It is given by a health care professional.
It is important Influvac (Influenza-vaccine) be given exactly as recommended by your doctor. If you miss an appointment to receive the influenza vaccine, contact your doctor as soon as possible to reschedule your appointment.
Influvac (Influenza-vaccine) is stored in the fridge and should be kept out of the reach of children. It should be protected from light and not allowed to freeze.
Do not dispose of medications in wastewater (e.g. down the sink or in the toilet) or in household garbage. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medications that are no longer needed or have expired.
Many medications can cause side effects. A side effect is an unwanted response to a medication when it is taken in normal doses. Side effects can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent. The side effects listed below are not experienced by everyone who takes Influvac (Influenza-vaccine). If you are concerned about side effects, discuss the risks and benefits of Influvac (Influenza-vaccine) with your doctor.
The following side effects have been reported by at least 1% of people taking Influvac (Influenza-vaccine). Many of these side effects can be managed, and some may go away on their own over time.
Contact your doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe or bothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects.
Although most of the side effects listed below don't happen very often, they could lead to serious problems if you do not check with your doctor or seek medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
Seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
Be sure to mention any side effect to your doctor, as it may mean that you are allergic to the vaccine. If so, it would not be safe for you to have more doses of the same type of vaccine.
Some people may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries you while you are taking Influvac (Influenza-vaccine).
We manage your refills and get in touch with your doctors for prescription renewals so that you always have the medication you need.
Influvac is no longer being manufactured for sale in Canada. For brands that may still be available, search under influenza vaccine. This article is being kept available for reference purposes only. If you are using Influvac (Influenza-vaccine), speak with your doctor or pharmacist for information about your treatment options.
Do not receive this influenza vaccine if you:
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There may be an interaction between the influenza vaccine and any of the following:
If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your specific circumstances, your doctor may want you to:
An interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of them. Speak to your doctor about how any drug interactions are being managed or should be managed.
Medications other than those listed above may interact with Influvac (Influenza-vaccine). Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications you are taking.
Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the Nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.
Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or Allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use Influvac (Influenza-vaccine).
Allergic reactions: In rare instances, this vaccine may cause severe allergic reactions. This is why your doctor may ask you to stay in the office for about 30 minutes after having the vaccine so that you can get medical care if you experience an allergic reaction. If you notice signs of a severe allergic reaction (hives; trouble breathing or swallowing; or swelling of the lips, face, throat, or tongue), get medical attention immediately.
Allergy to eggs: People who have an allergy to eggs that causes anaphylaxis (hives, swelling of the mouth and throat, difficulty breathing) should discuss with their doctor the risks and benefits of receiving this vaccine and whether any special monitoring is needed. Bleeding: If you have a bleeding disorder or if you take anticoagulants (blood thinners), talk to your doctor about how this vaccine may affect your medical condition and whether any special monitoring is needed.
Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS): Guillain-Barre syndrome, a neurological disorder, has been rarely reported after this vaccine is given. If you experience any weakness or tingling in the legs, arms, or upper body, contact your doctor. Most people recover fully from GBS.
Immune system: As with any vaccine, influenza vaccine may not be as effective for those who have a weakened immune system (e.g., people on chemotherapy, people who have had an organ transplant, or people with HIV).
Vaccine protection: As with any vaccine, this vaccine may not protect 100% of people who receive it. The vaccine only provides protection against certain strains of the flu virus – the ones from which it was prepared (or ones that are closely related).
Pregnancy: If you are or may become pregnant while receiving Influvac (Influenza-vaccine), talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of using this vaccine. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization recommends influenza vaccination for healthy pregnant women.
Breast-feeding: Breast-feeding mothers can receive the influenza vaccination.
Children: The influenza vaccine is not recommended in children under 6 months of age.
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All material © 1996-2021 MediResource Inc. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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