Expectant mums have nothing to fear with flu shot: doctor

AS SOON as those two lines appear on the test, pregnant women are cautious about what goes into their bodies but if there is one exception to the rule, it's the flu vaccine.

Expectant mothers are being urged to roll up their sleeves and get the flu shot, ahead of the upcoming flu season.

Warwick Condamine Medical Centre's Dr Lynton Hudson said the vaccine was one of, if not the only, vaccination recommended to pregnant women.

He said the shot was not a live virus vaccine, meaning it didn't contain the flu virus and women could not contract the flu from the shot.

"There is a lot of fear and there is a story that you can get the flu from the vaccine but that isn't the case," he said.

"It is good that people understand the risks of what they put in their body when pregnant but it is also important they understand the risks of the illness."

Dr Hudson said the vaccine was safe throughout the entire pregnancy.

If influenza is contracted by an expectant mother, the affects can be more severe than those experienced by others.

"They found in the flu pandemics that women did a lot worse with it when pregnant," Dr Hudson said.

"They became more unwell and there can be effects to the baby."

Darling Downs Public Health Physician Dr Penny Hutchinson said pregnant women who contracted the flu were at risk of miscarriage and some had been admitted to intensive care.

Dr Hutchinson said the best time to protect against flu was now, ahead of the upcoming season.

"There is a bit of hesitation with women who are concerned about being vaccinated in their pregnancy but the risks of the flu are far worse than the vaccine," she said.

The vaccine is not recommended to those who have allergy problems with either eggs or other vaccines.

 

Get yours

  • A free vaccination session for people of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island descent will be held Monday, April 29 from 4-6pm at Warwick High School.
  • For more information, phone your GP.


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