Before you take your flu shots, here is something to consider.....
Nutrition News and Views, November/December 2010, Vol. 14, No. 6
How effective are flu vaccines? The vaccine formula change each year. Usually in the spring, three flu strains are chosen based on guesswork, flu outbreaks in Asia, and recommendations of the World Health Organization. The guess is frequently wrong. Researchers divide flu in two types. One is blamed on influenza A or B viruses which afflict fewer than 15% of people who appear to have flu. The flu vaccines applies to this type. All other forms of flu (85%) are referred to as influenza-like illness. Both types produce exactly the same symptoms. It's just that specific flu viruses can't be found in influenza-like illness. Vaccine researcher Tom Jefferson, MD, explains: "The flu is not caused by a single 'bug' --about one-third of all influenza is caused by an unknown agent; about one-third are caused by rhinoviruses, the same viruses that cause the common cold; and the remainder are a mixed bag of other agents including influenza A and B viruses and members of the coronavirus family," Anywhere from 150-200 viruses are implicated in causing the symptoms. What makes it really complicated, he says, is that they all appear to cause the same illness. What we see every year as flu may be caused by 200 to 300 different agents (viruses and others). A vaccine is offered against a few influenza A and/or B viruses, though no one can predict which strains of or how much A or B will be applicable. Since the A and B viruses account only for a small percentage (15%) of all flu-type cases, in no way can the vaccine prevent the type of lue that the vast majority of people get.
Here are some other quotes from the article...
"There is no evidence whatsoever that seasonal influenza vaccines have any effect, especially in the elderly and young children. No evidence of reduced cases, deaths, complications."
September 2, 2008 AMA Morning Rounds headline read: "Researchers suggest influenza vaccine's effectiveness in elderly patients may have been exaggerated by earlier observational studies." The earlier studies seemed to show that vaccines were effective when they really were not.
February, 2010 Cochrane Database of System Reviews shows that flu vaccines keep coming up short. Dr Roger Thomas explained that what troubled the researchers was that the vaccines had no effect on laboratory-confirmed flu. They looked for proof of reductions in flu, pneumonia, and deaths from pneumonia. They didn't find any of these.
An early 2010 study implicated the 2008 flu vaccine in causing an increase of risk for 2009 H1N1 swine flu.
--This is my own opinion, I think flu-vaccine is just another way of big PHAMA company scaring the innocents and making huge profits out of it. Sad, but true.