Flu jab effectiveness

Hi all,

My asthma/bronchiectasis flares up whenever I develop a cold these days. I had the Flu jab (and the Swine Flu jab) last Autumn and have spent over half this year in hospital so I can't help feeling that these jabs didn't help. Does anyone have any experience where they feel the Flu vaccination has caused their asthma to get worse?

I have got an appointment to have the jab again this year, but am in two minds as I feel as fit as a fiddle at the moment.

Thanks for any thoughts/advice,

Sarah x

15 Replies

  • I had flu jab year before last and was v ill afterwards.I have flu now so a bit late to bother this year!Will go for pneumonia one as now asthma is brittle will be worth doing just in case!

  • Having mine next week.Carnt say it made me bad just had a big lump on arm with flu jab but glad get it next few days.Had a bad winter and summer and dreading winter again x EDIT-Had mine now and pnewmonia one also x

  • read this tweet by DHgovuk over concerns for this years flu vacine. bit.ly/aprSt5

  • ok....I could be being really dumb here...it wouldnt be the first time....but what effect would it have if you already had the swine flu jab last year? i only started getting jabs last year (wasnt on the list till last year cause of confusion over my asthma)

  • The flu jab will protect you from one strain of the flu virus. Colds and flu are not the same thing.

    So having the flu jab will protect you from getting a particular version of the flu. You will not be protected from any mutations of the virus or bacterial infections.

  • My Dad and Nan have asthma, they don't have their flu jabs as it gives them flu!

    Also I have a family friend who works with medicine and he said to stay away from the swine flu jab as it's not had extensive testing yet.


  • Got my flu jab today. Told it covers 4 types of flu. Apparently this years flu jab will be a booster to last year's swine flu jab.

  • I think it is really important to remember that flu is not just a cold. A lot of asthmatics at the severe end of the spectrum can become very ill with it and some end up hospilized. I also think that some people think that the flu jab is a magic cure that prevents all colds, flu and virus'.

    If you get flu, it doesnt mean your jab hasnt worked. There are many different strains of flu virus and it would be to difficult to put all of them in the jab, so each year they just pick a few of the most common ones and put those in. As someone else has already said, this years jab also covers you for swine flu too.

    Correct me if I am wrong but as far as I'm aware, flu vaacines contain only dead flu virus, so there is no way you can catch the flu from it. If you ever catch the flu after having the jab then that is just and unlucky coincidence i guess.

    Sorry about my long ramble but I want to make sure that people protect them selves this winter because nobody wants to spend christmas in hospital, or any time at all in hospital for that matter!

    Hope everyone is well


  • oh im worried about getting mine, didnt have it last year and was ill, the year before i had it and i was ill so i dont know what to do. having had flu i know how blooming awful it is and how bad it makes my asthma but im not going out very much at all (and by going out i mean food shopping/bill paying not socialising as this is very very rare for me as i get very anxious) so do i really need it?

  • The vaccine is aimed at reducing severity of symptoms of the flu if taken. I will personally take the sore arm and a week feeling miserable if it prevents me having the ful blown symptoms of flu or a visit to itu if I can prevent it.

  • Hiya,

    I agree with gussypoo, it's better feeling a bit off it but it only happens sometimes and the stinging doesn't last long(with me).

    I caught the flu last year a few days before I was to receive the flu jab and I suffered badly from it. In fact I haven't been right since and had pneumonia and 4 bad chest infections since so I will go and get my jab next week.

    Please take care of yourself and dont forget that prevention is always better than the cure.

    love Lydia x

  • I've had flue jab every year since being diagnosed with asthma. Most times, so far, it has been effective. Only once did I end up with flu like symptoms after. Didn't like the swine flu jab last year though, felt pretty rotten for a couple of days afterwards.

    I've got mine on Monday, so hope I'm ok with this one!

  • For KE

    For KE

    You haven't ticked to let me answer your message.

    Re: swine flu booster in flu jab.

    My asthma nurse at GP surgery asked if I'd had the swine flu jab last year. I said yes. To which she said this will be wee booster.

    Hope this helps.

  • Ok - just to add my 2p-worth:

    This year's flu vacc is tri-valent, i.e. it contains the three strains (varieties) of 'flu that are likely to be circulating this winter. One of these is Swine 'flu. If you had the Swine 'flu jab last year, you can still have the 'flu jab this year - as has already been said, it will boost your immunity.

    The 'flu jab does only contain ""dead"" vaccine, so cannot give you 'flu. Your body's immune reaction to it may give you some mild cold-like symptoms for a few days.

    The 'flu jab has been thoroughly tested as it is every year, so there are no concerns about the safety of it in any way, shape or form (there were concerns about last year's Swine 'flu vaccine, but these cannot apply to this year's 'flu jab as it has not been fast-tracked through the approvals process).

    As has already been said, the 'flu jab will only protect against the three most prevalent strains of 'flu, and won't protect you against all 'flu strains. It also will not stop you from getting the common cold (oh, if only!!).

    Hope that helps!


    (Has her 'flu jab every year, had her Swine 'flu jab last year, and is still here now ;-) )

  • parents view

    My daughter Chloe is a well controlled asthmatic(thanks to suitable meds) but soon after she was diagnosed i got the letter about flu jab and i said no -boy do i regret it she did get the flu and was VERY poorly and nearly ended up in hospital - she now has it EVERY year without fail - yes she may have a few days of being under the weather (i try to link up jab with weekend or half term) but its worth it in the end.

    I however despite being a brittle asthmatic with heart problems dont have it as i have had an allergic reaction when i last had it so just try VERY hard to avoid coming in contact with poorly peeps and pray very hard i dont get it. My hubby does although hes not asthmatic as he is technically my'carer' but we had to fight for this.

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