Flu vaccine and possible egg allergy

Hi all, I'm a newbie but have browsed the boards for some time and found loads of useful information, so am very grateful for that. However, I have a question I can't seem to find any posts about.

I went for my annual asthma review at my new practice a couple of weeks ago and the asthma nurse asked me if I wanted the flu vaccine. I haven't had this before as my old asthma nurse wouldn't do it because I have a problem with eggs (gastro issues) and quite a few allergies/uricaria.

I discussed this with her and she said she fully understood but thought there was a vaccine which wasn't grown in eggs that I could have. This week one of the GP's rang to say that if I have a true egg allergy (ie swollen lips, urticaria etc) I can't have the normal vaccine but if it's just gastro then I can. Unfortunately the reaction to eggs has never been established as my old GP refused to send me for allergy testing when I asked. The other vaccine isn't available at the practice.

BUT if I do go ahead and have it I must stay on the premises for an hour in case I have a reaction to it.

I said I would think about it but quite honestly I am worried about the thought of it.

Has anyone else been in this situation? What did you decide and if you went ahead were you ok?

Thank you


5 Replies

  • i dont know whether this will help you but my teenager daughter is egg intolerant and also has some unknown alleries.she has the flu injection every year just gets sore arm she does take antihistamine beforehand but no adverse reaction.

  • If you are unsure whether you have a 'true egg' allergy surely the safest thing to do this year is to have the egg free one, then hopefully get allergy testing/ or a referral to an allergist.

    Why can't the GP order the egg free vaccine in for you, they are available?! I work at a GP surgery in Scotland and we are sent information about the different vaccines available including the egg free version. We search our database beforehand to see how many patients have egg allergies.

  • Hello Shelly,

    I am anaphyalctic to eggs and haven't had the vaccine for many years now.

    I spent a hr on the phone this AM to try to sort out getting the egg free or a low albumen vaccine...... going round in circles...

    Anyway, there is / was an egg free vaccine this year, Preclucel, but it has been withdrawn due to a lot of reactions.

    There are three vaccines that have a very low amount of egg in and can be given in a split dose ( 2) in a safe environment. These are Viroflu, Fluvarix and a generic one from Sanofi Pasteur MSD.

    You can ask your GP to prescribe one of these and it can be obtained from a pharmacist!

    Anyway, please ask for an allergy test to determine if you are actually allergic to eggs. It would solve quite a few issues for you.

    I have to have mine in Chest clinic at my local hosp being Brittle asthmatic...........

    Hope this helps


  • Thank you so much for all your replies, I feel re-assured that others have been in a similar situaiton and still able to have the vaccine. I use piriton a lot, that's a good idea to have some beforehand.

    Bryony I did think it odd to be just told that they 'didn't have any' apart from the normal vaccine.

    I will definitely ask for the allergy testing again, my last GP wasn't very helpful but my new one is much more approachable and it would be so helpful to find out for sure. I think I will ask him about the vaccine too.

    ShellyB x

  • My daughter has an egg allergy (plus a few more), she is also brittle asthmatic. Last year she went into hospital to have the flu jab they only gave her one tenth and ended up having quite a bad reaction. Her respiratory consultant is looking into the jab this year and said that the jabs this year have a lower egg albumin but he a still going to talk to her allergy consultant as to if she is safe to have it. The best thing to do is get as much information as you can. You should also find out if you are allergic to eggs. I hope it all works out for you.

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