The Big Picture by Lennie Peterson

The Big Picture

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  1. burleigh2

    burleigh2 said, about 4 years ago

    Funny enough, people that get the flu shot aren’t guaranteed to not get the flu and I know of quite a few people that have gotten the flu only after they got the shot and many more who haven’t gotten a flu at all and they never get the shot. ;-)

  2. Lynne B

    Lynne B GoComics PRO Member said, about 4 years ago


    The flu shot has between a 60-80% efficacy most years; it depends on how congruent the strains selected for the shot are with the strains circulating (they have to predict this months in advance in order to be able to grow a supply of weakened virus).

    When the strain of flu in the shot isn’t a good match with the strains of flu encountered, then sure, the shot doesn’t help. Even when it is a good match, it doesn’t induce a protective immune response in 100% of the people. HOWEVER, and this is the big thing, it does create a protective response in better than half the people who get it, and if that involves enough of the population, it can interrupt the transmission vectors. That’s what the whole “herd immunity” thing is about.

    And that’s why it’s so important for doctors, nurses, carers and people who come into contact with people who are already fragile and/or who have an impaired immune response, to get the vaccine. It’s to provide as much of a protective non-infectious buffer around those folks as possible.

    Having said all that, there is active research under way to come up with a better flu vaccine, hopefully a “universal” one that has far better cross-reactivity, that people would only have to get once every ten years or so.

  3. Indigo

    Indigo GoComics PRO Member said, about 4 years ago

    I don’t get the flu shot either.

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