Flumist: Quadrivalent live attenuated influenza vaccine

Flumist: Quadrivalent live attenuated influenza vaccine

Flumist vaccine is live attenuated influenza vaccine. It is live vaccine. It is Quadrivalent vaccine. It contains 4 types of antigens from influenza virus species. It protects from Influenza A strains and influenza B strains. This is vaccine from Medimmune LLC.

Flumist for intramuscular injection is inactivated influenza vaccine. It is prepared from influenza virus.

The virus is propagated in Hen’s egg while manufacturing this vaccine.

How is Flumist vaccine available?

Flumist vaccine is available in ready to spray formulation as slightly opalascent liquid form. It is available in pre-filled sterile syringe for sparying. It is available in 2 doses of 0.2 ml.

How is Flumist vaccine stored?

Flumist 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.  It should be kept in carton till needed to be given to protect it from light. The temperature range is maintained at all stages of storage and transport.

How is Flumist vaccine given?

Flumist vaccine is given by spraying the vaccine in nose. The rubber cap is removed. The end of the sprayer is held near nose so that is sprayed in nose. The dose adjusting clip is not moved. The plunger is pushed as fast as possible till dose adjusting clip no longer allows further push. Then held near other nostril and pushed again. Thus the entire dose is delivered in to nose of the patient.

The devise should not be touched with alcohol solutions like spirit.

At what age Flumist vaccine is given?

Flumist vaccine is approved for the use for those above 2 years.

It is given 1 or 2 doses 0.5 ml 1 month apart in age 2-8 years.

It is given single dose yearly for those above 9 years.

How does Flumist vaccine works?

Flumist is live attenuated vaccine. It contains live influenza virus strains of A and B types. This is active form of immunization. When this vaccine is sprayed to Nose. These live attenuated virus infect the person who got the dose. They have capacity to infect but they cannot cause severe disease. 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 Flumist vaccine?

Side effects of Flumist 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.
  • Runny nose and nasal stuffiness may occur which can be treated at home.
  • Sore throat and cough.
  • Wheezing and asthmatic attack are known side effects after taking this vaccine. Incidences are more in those below 5 years of age.
  • 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 VaxiFlu-4 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 it is not given?

  • Flumist vaccine should not be given to those who are sever allergic to any of its components.
  • Flumist vaccine should not be given to those who had got allergic/anaphylactic reaction at the time of the previous dose.
  • It should not be given to those who are allergic to egg proteins.
  • Safety data of this vaccine in pregnancy and lactating mother is not established. Considering it is live vaccine should be avoided in this group.
  • Those with sever immuno-deficiency and with HIV AIDS stage 3 and 4 disease should not be given live vaccines.
  • Those on aspirin therapy should not be given this vaccine.
  • Currently wheezing patient.
  • Those who had Guillian Barre syndrome.
  • Those who have diabetes.
  • Those who have kidney, Heart and lung problems.
  • Those currently taking medicines like Tamiflu, Amantadine, Rimantadine and Aspirin.

What cautions are needed with this vaccine?

This vaccine should not be given to those who are on aspirin therapy.

Aspirin therapy cannot be given till 4 weeks after taking this vaccine.

This vaccine may induce allergy in few patients. Those allergic to egg protein should not take this vaccine.

This vaccine should not be given to those below 2 years age as incidences of wheezing and difficulty in breathing are more in this age group after taking this vaccine.

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