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Dr. Lloyd's blog has now been retired. We appreciate all the wisdom and support Dr. Lloyd has brought to the WebMD community throughout the years.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Don’t Give Me the Flu

Here’s a sincere plea: Don’t give me the flu!

You see, if I contract viral influenza I will very likely give it to many other people. For up to five days before I develop fever and realize that I’m sick, I will shed highly-infectious virus particles to everyone with whom I come in contact. Earlier this week I was in a very crowded lecture hall with over 200 people who came to hear me speak. Did you know that I roam all over the room when I lecture? Hopefully they departed with some useful information, a few laughs and nothing more.

Here’s the deal: You can protect me if you get your flu vaccination.

Are you worried about availability? There are over 135,000,000 vaccine doses available today.

Are you worried about Thimerosal? You shouldn’t be worried because there is no valid scientific evidence that links Thimerosal to neurodevlopmental disorders. But lets say that you are still skeptical. Many flu vaccines are Thimeosal-free… all you have to do is ask. Single-dose syringes and the nasal FluMist influenza vaccine contain no Thimerosal.

Thank you for protecting me from getting influenza.

Be sure to get your healthy children over 6-months-old vaccinated, too. Children love me and they flock to me. School-age children are also very powerful vectors for influenza. They can shed live virus for 10 days because of their younger immune systems. Remember, I asked for your help.


Worried about needles? By now I hope you would be willing to take one for me, but even the squeamish can still be heroes. The FluMist nasal influenza vaccine is inhaled through each nostril and works just as well as the injectable form. In some aspects FluMist is superior to the traditional injection.

Finally, if I get the flu, I will likely miss work and be unavailable to help all those who are counting on me. This will really mess things up. So, please keep your promise and go get your flu vaccine.

On second thought, I’m not sure you’ll keep your word. I’m going to go get myself vaccinated. That way I can help protect you and your family from seasonal flu.

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Posted by: Bill Lloyd MD at 12:55 pm


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