The Vaccine Mom Busts Flu Myths
Nov 20, 2019

Vaccinate Your Family is thrilled to welcome Taryn Chapman, the creator of The Vaccine Mom, who will be offering up regular Video Blogs for Shot of Prevention on a variety of  topics. Taryn is a molecular biologist and medical writer who is on a mission to bring science to the public in relevant and meaningful ways. Read more about the “Vaccine Mom” in our About Us Section.

I hope you will enjoy this video discussing the importance of timely flu vaccinations for your family! My goal is to help vaccine-hesitant parents make the informed decision to vaccinate. By connecting as a mother and creating meaningful conversations, parents tend to be more open to accepting that vaccines are safe and effective. I’m hopeful that my videos will help more parents choose to vaccinate their families.

Check out my favorite resources on influenza:

Vaccinate Your Family’s Flu Vaccine Section

CDC’s “Flu Vaccine Protects You and Your Family”

Vaccinate Your Family’s “2019-2020 Flu Season”

Kid’s Health’s “Is the Flu Vaccine a Good Idea for Your Family?”

Healthy Children’s “Which Flu Vaccine Should My Children Get This Year?”

Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Vaccine Education Center’s “Influenza (Flu) Vaccine Resources”

Flu Vaccine Is Safe For Pregnant Mom’s VYF Page

Check out more posts by Taryn, The Vaccine Mom

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2 responses to “The Vaccine Mom Busts Flu Myths”

  1. Anna says:

    Hi, I was just wondering how the lady in the video can say that the flu strain can protect against other flu viruses or mutants of viruses when it say this in the insert of Fluarix

    “Antibody against one influenza virus type or subtype confers little or no protection against
    another virus. Furthermore, antibody to one antigenic variant of influenza virus might not protect against a new antigenic variant of the same type or subtype. Frequent development of antigenic variants through antigenic drift is the virological basis for seasonal epidemics and the reason for the usual replacement of one or more influenza viruses in each year’s influenza vaccine”

    Did she get her information from a different flu insert? Just not sure how to process this, it seems like totally different information.

    • VaccinateYourFamily says:

      Dear Anna, here is some background on how a “good match” is determined – this is copied from the CDC website
      Vaccine Match
      What is meant by a “good match” between viruses in the vaccine and circulating influenza viruses?
      A “good match” is said to occur when the flu vaccine viruses used to produce flu vaccine and the viruses circulating among people during a given influenza season are “like” one another such that the antibodies produced by vaccination protect against infection with circulating viruses.

      What if circulating viruses and the vaccine viruses are different?
      During seasons when one or more of the circulating viruses are different or “drifted” from the vaccine viruses, vaccine effectiveness against the drifted viruses can be reduced. It’s important to remember that flu vaccine protects against three or four different flu viruses and multiple viruses usually circulate during any one season. Even if the effectiveness of the vaccine is reduced against one virus it can still be effective at preventing flu illness caused by the other circulating viruses. For these reasons, CDC continues to recommend flu vaccination for everyone 6 months and older even if vaccine effectiveness against one or more viruses is reduced.

      Why is there sometimes not a good match between a vaccine virus and circulating viruses?
      Flu viruses are constantly changing (called “antigenic drift”) – they can change from one season to the next or they can even change within the course of one flu season. Experts must pick which viruses to include in the vaccine many months in advance in order for vaccine to be produced and delivered on time. (For more information about the vaccine virus selection process visit Selecting the Viruses in the Influenza (Flu) Vaccine.) Because of these factors, there is always the possibility of a less than optimal match between circulating viruses and the viruses used to produce vaccine.

      The production process for some seasonal vaccines also may impact how well vaccine works against certain viruses, especially influenza A (H3N2) viruses. Growth in eggs is part of the production process for most seasonal flu vaccines. While all influenza viruses undergo changes when they are grown in eggs, changes in influenza A(H3N2) viruses are more likely to result in antigenic changes compared with changes in other influenza viruses. These so-called “egg-adapted changes” are present in most of the vaccine viruses recommended for use in egg-based vaccine production and may reduce their potential effectiveness against circulating influenza viruses. Advances in vaccine production technologies (for example, cell-based and recombinant technology) and advanced molecular techniques are being explored as ways to improve flu vaccine effectiveness. Learn more by visiting, Advancements in Influenza Vaccines.

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