Over the course of a typical flu season - which runs from October to May in the United States - hundreds of thousands of people are hospitalized with the virus and tens of thousands die from it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Last year, flu activity wasn't elevated until mid-January.
There have been 39 flu-related hospitalizations so far in Cuyahoga County, 33 in Summit County and 42 in Stark, according to health department statistics. However, a national panel of experts announced on Tuesday that egg allergies should not prevent anyone from getting a flu shot, and that adverse reactions to the vaccine are no more likely among those with allergies compared to everyone else.
He says it's still too early to tell, but he says those thinking of getting the vaccine, shouldn't be anxious about that myth that you'll get the flu from the flu shot.
For many years people who have egg allergies have been warned not to get the flu vaccine because it has traces of egg protein. "We want health care providers and people with egg allergy to know there is no need to ask this question anymore, and no need to take any special precautions".
The new findings mean that even more people will be able to get their recommended flu shot without sacrificing peace of mind. "Egg allergy primarily affects young children, who are also particularly vulnerable to the flu".
See an allergy specialist for the flu shot. "It's very important that we encourage everyone, including children with egg allergy, to get a flu shot". The new guidelines reinforce the fact that the flu vaccine is safe and effective for everyone - even those with egg allergies.
The state health department recommends flu shots for anyone six months or older.
The DPH said more than 250 people tested positive for the flu as of early December.
Vaccination against flu can help reduce hospital admissions in this age group and help stop the spread of flu in the community. But, he points out, the amount of egg proteins in the vaccine each year has been decreasing.