This medication is a vaccine against influenza (flu) virus. It is also called the seasonal flu vaccine. The vaccine works by helping the body produce immunity (protection) that will prevent you from getting the flu or lessen the seriousness of the infection. As with any vaccine, it may not fully protect everyone who receives it. Since different types of flu viruses cause infection every flu season, usually a new vaccine is produced and given for each flu season.
This form of the vaccine is given through the nose and is recommended for healthy children and adults. In the U.S., it is approved for use in people aged 2 to 49 years. In Canada, it is approved for use in people aged 2 to 59 years.
If this vaccine is the first flu vaccination of a child aged 2 through 8 years, the child should receive a second dose (usually at least 1 month after the first dose). If a child in this age group has received this vaccine in a previous flu season, only one dose is given. Patients aged 9 years and older (including adults) should receive only one dose for each flu season.
To receive this vaccine, sit or stand upright with your head tilted back. A health care professional will spray the medication into each nostril, one at a time.
If your doctor has directed you to receive this vaccine, remember that he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
Contact your doctor for medical advice about side effects. The following numbers do not provide medical advice, but in the US, you may report side effects to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) at 1-800-822-7967. In Canada, you may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before receiving this vaccine, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to eggs; or if you have previously had a severe allergic reaction to flu vaccine; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients (such as gentamicin, gelatin, arginine), which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before receiving this vaccine, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: breathing problems (e.g., asthma, wheezing, chronic lung disease), current infection/fever, diabetes, history of Guillain-Barre syndrome, immune system problems (e.g., due to cancer treatment, HIV infection), kidney disease.
This vaccine contains a weakened form of the flu virus. After receiving the vaccine, you may be able to infect others with flu for up to 3 weeks. Rarely, infections may occur in people in close contact with someone who has received this vaccine. Caution is advised if you have regular close contact with family/household members with weakened immune systems (e.g., due to cancer).
Children aged 2 to 17 years who are taking aspirin should not receive this vaccine due to the risk for developing Reye's syndrome, a rare but serious condition. Also, children in this age group should not use products containing aspirin for 4 weeks after receiving this vaccine unless directed by the doctor. Consult the doctor for details.
This form of the vaccine is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Instead, a flu vaccine that is given by injection is recommended. Consult your doctor for more details.
See also Precautions section.
Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first.
Avoid taking certain drugs that fight flu virus (e.g., amantadine, oseltamivir, rimantadine) when receiving this vaccine. If you are currently taking any of these drugs, you should not receive this vaccine until at least 48 hours after stopping treatment. Do not take any of these drugs until at least 2 weeks after receiving this vaccine.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription products you may use, especially of: other vaccines, other products applied in the nose, drugs that weaken the immune system (e.g., cyclosporine, tacrolimus, certain anti-cancer drugs, corticosteroids such as prednisone).
This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Keep all medical and laboratory appointments.
This vaccine is usually given once for each flu season. If the doctor prescribes a second dose (for a first vaccination in a child aged 2 through 8 years), and the child misses the second dose, contact the doctor to set up a new appointment.
Store in the refrigerator. Do not freeze. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.
Information last revised July 2014. Copyright(c) 2014 First Databank, Inc.
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