Flu Vaccine Marketing Tactics and Shocking Side Effects

By Revital Aranbaev

Some possible side effects from the flu vaccine: runny nose, congestion, and fatigue (aka symptoms of the flu). So why are people getting the flu vaccine if a possible side effect is flu symptoms?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend the flu vaccine for nearly all individuals because “the effects of the illness are greater than the most common side effects of the vaccine.”

There are two types of flu vaccines available for children and adults. The first kind is the traditional flu shot administered with a needle, which is made from killed flu viruses. The second kind is a nasal vaccine administered as a nasal spray, made from weakened live viruses. There is no current evidence on which vaccine is more effective but lots of parents prefer the nasal vaccine for their kids in order to avoid needles.

Flu vaccines are not 100% effective; according to the CDC receiving an annual flu shot can reduce one’s risk of getting influenza by 70 to 90 percent. [i]

The CDC states that 5%- 20% of Americans get the flu each year. More than 200,000 people in the U.S. are hospitalized for it annually and about 3,000 to 49,000 deaths are flu-related. That’s a pretty big gap! We couldn’t get more specific than that?

It’s not widely publicized, but about 90% of flu-related deaths occur in people aged 65 or above.[ii] So why is there so much fear created around getting the flu at any age?

Why not specify who is more at risk and why, instead of pushing it on everyone?

Marketing -

Let’s look at who’s administering the flu vaccine and why. Since 2010, marketing for the flu vaccine has become more rigorous than ever. According to the Wall Street Journal, drug stores struggling with the economy are pushing flu vaccines earlier and harder than ever.[iii]

They are promoting this service through TV commercials, in-store displays, Facebook and Twitter. The drugstore CVS is letting people book an appointment online, on the phone or in person. Walgreens is offering flu-shot gift cards, targeting kids heading off to college, and using slogans like "Arm yourself for the ones you love."

Until a few years ago, retail pharmacists couldn't even get state certification to provide flu shots. By 2010 all 50 states allowed pharmacists to provide vaccinations. According to the Wall Street Journal “The hope is that customers will stop in for a flu shot and pick up shampoo or a gallon of milk.” Since pharmacies can’t return leftover vaccines, they’re motivated to sell ALL of the flu shots they bought to customers like you and I!

In the past, flu vaccination season started in October. But in 2009, the CDC recommended the timing be moved up by a month. So since 2010, the shots have been available prior to Labor Day.

In the past year, more than 110 million doses of vaccine had been delivered in the United States by the end of September, with manufacturers projecting total production of 166-173 million doses. This is the most flu vaccine ever produced for the U.S. market![iv]

Side Effects

The most common immediate side effect from the flu shot is injection site reaction, which can cause tenderness, redness of the skin, or inflammation.[v]

Possible side effects of the nasal flu spray can include fever, headache, runny nose, vomiting and some wheezing.[vi]

People who are allergic to eggs are at the highest risk of developing an allergic reaction from the flu vaccination, since the vaccination contains egg products.[vii] Symptoms from an allergic reaction can include itchy skin or hives, throat or facial swelling, dizziness, or breathing difficulties.

On a much grander scale of side effects, Dr. Hugh Fudenberg, a well known immunogeneticist states that if you receive five or more flu shots you have a ten-fold increased chance of getting Alzheimer's. That's ten times more likely than no flu shots or one.[viii]

He and other researchers state that the connection is a result from the combination of mercury (thimerosal) and aluminum that builds up over time in the brain. According to the CDC, "The following substances are found in vaccines: aluminum, (brain toxin) antibiotics, egg protein, formaldehyde (now listed as carcinogenic), MSG or monosodium glutamate (a known neurotoxin), and thimerosal (neurotoxic mercury)."[ix] Note that not all of these additives are used all the time.

Please comment and let us know your experience with the flu vaccine.

[i] http://www.livestrong.com/article/83023-truth-flu-shots-risks-/

[ii] http://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/influenza/fact_sheet.htm

[iii] http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703908704575433470792980944.html

[iv] http://www.doh.state.fl.us/Disease_ctrl/immune/files/Influenza_Key_Points_Oct_2011.pdf

[v] http://www.livestrong.com/article/207741-what-are-the-dangers-of-the-flu-shot/#ixzz1opLe6I9V

[vi] http://www.livestrong.com/article/77700-common-side-effects-flu-shot/

[vii] http://www.livestrong.com/article/207741-what-are-the-dangers-of-the-flu-shot/#ixzz1opLe6I9V

[viii] http://www.naturalnews.com/033891_vaccines_delayed_injury.html

[ix] http://www.naturalnews.com/033891_vaccines_delayed_injury.html

4 Comment(s)

  1. As a physician who works in a bay area hospital, I see young people with chronic illnesses such as asthma suffer flu related complications such as life threatening bacterial pneumonia following the flu routinely.  Does "Dr. Hugh Fudenberg, a well known immunogeneticist"
    have any randominzed controlled studies or any studies to back up his claims? You don't mention this in your article.

    karin | Reply

  2. You couldn't pay me  to get a flu shot.

    Barbara Costides | Reply

  3. Karin, for detailed information on Dr. Hugh Fudenberg’s studies you can check out his website- http://nitrf.org/fudenberg.html

    admin | Reply

  4. I have to get flu shots because I work in an ER and it is required. The second time I got one I got a localized reaction with a hardened area that turned into a bullseye bump where I got the shot. It lasted for over a month. The NP at the hospital I got it told me I likely had a reaction to eggs in it because I have been a vegan nearly my entire life. So now I have to get the non-egg type which is a huge disappointment since it appears that it is made with some type of animal liver. WTF? Can’t it be made vegan?

    tresa black | Reply

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