Afluria: Quadrivalent influenza H1N1 vaccine

Afluria: Quadrivalent influenza H1N1 vaccine

Afluria vaccine is inactivated influenza vaccine. It is split virion vaccine. It is tetravalent vaccine. It contains 4 types of antigens from influenza virus species. This is vaccine from Seqirus.
Afluria for intramuscular injection is inactivated influenza vaccine. It protects from strains of Type A and Type B influenza virus.

This is egg based vaccine that is virus strains for this vaccine manufacturing are propagated on hen’s eggs. It may contain egg proteins.

How is Afluria vaccine available?

Afluria vaccine is available in ready to inject formulation as slightly opalascent liquid form. It is available in pre-filled sterile syringe for injection. It is available in dose 0.25 ml and 0.5 ml. It is available in single dose packet.

How is Afluria vaccine stored?

Afluria vaccine is stored at 2-8 degree Celsius as recommended by manufacturer. Temperature range is maintained by the cold chain. The vaccine if accidentally frozen should be discarded and not used. The temperature range is maintained at all stages of storage and transport.

How is Afluria vaccine given?

Afluria vaccine is given by injection on antero-lateral aspect of thigh in infants and small children. Those for adult and adolescents it can be given on deltoid region of the shoulder. All standard safe injection precautions need to be taken. After use the disposables and needles are to be discarded as per the guidelines for biomedical waste management protocols. The expired vaccine should be discarded as per BMW protocols so that it is not harmful to environment. The dose for those below 3 years is 0.25 ml and those above 3 years is 0.5 ml

At what age Afluria vaccine is given?

Afluria vaccine is given at age 6 months and second dose at 7 months then one dose is given yearly till 5 years of age. Children with chronic pulmonary diseases and those with increased chances of pulmonary infection this dose should be given yearly. Those adults who are diabetic and hypertensive and immunosuppressed should get this vaccine yearly.

This vaccine is used in pregnancy as there is increase risk of wine flu during pregnancy. The studies done on rats suggest no effect of fetus. Since influenza has increased risk in pregnancy the risk to benefit ratio should be considered for this vaccination during pregnancy.

6 months through 35 monthsOne or 2 doses 0.25 ml eachIf 2 doses administer at least 4 weeks apart
36 months through 8 yearsOne or 2 doses 0.5 ml eachIf 2 doses administer at least 4 weeks apart
9 years and olderOne dose, 0.5 ml 
Schedule of Afluria vaccine

How does Afluria vaccine works?

Afluria is killed vaccine. It contains inactivated virus. This is active form of immunization. When this vaccine is injected to an individual the antigens in it get inside the body. These antigens are recognized by the immune system of the individuals. The immune system develops mechanism to fight against the virus and if real infection takes place the immune response is rapidly ramped up and the disease is prevented. Only the drawback is influenza virus mutates rapidly and so because if this, the new version of vaccine comes yearly. It is needed to be given yearly.

What are side effects of Afluria vaccine?

Side effects of Afluria vaccine are usually mild and can be managed at home very easily.

  • Fever can be there after the vaccination. It can be mild to moderate grade and can be managed at home by paracetamol and sponging. Fever may last for 1-3 days usually reduces with time.
  • Local pain and redness swelling can come at injection site. It may last for 1-3 days. It can be easily managed with paracetamol and local cold fomentation.
  • Headache can come in some patients after vaccination. Usually reduces in 1-3 days. This headache can be managed at home with paracetamol.
  • Irritability and abnormal crying.
  • Loss of appetite and vomiting.
  • Muscular pain and fatigue seen after Afluria vaccination may last for the 1-3 days. It generally reduces by its own.
  • Allergy and anaphylactic reaction: This is very rare side effect. The vaccine should not be given to those who are allergic to the component/s of the vaccine. The anaphylactic reaction should be managed very swiftly. The skilled person, necessary drugs and equipments should be available for the management.

To whom this vaccine should not be given?

Those who are allergic to any of the vaccine components.

Those who had severe allergic/anaphylactic reaction at the time of the previous dose.

Those who are less than 6 month of age.

Those who had episode of GBS in last 6 weeks.

Those who are allergic egg proteins.

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