This flu season, you might here the term “quadrivalent vaccine” thrown around a surprising amount. This new type of vaccine was only recently approved by the CDC for use, so it’s no wonder that doctors and other medical professionals are excited about it. For those who will be getting vaccinated this flu season, the term can be off-putting and mysterious – what is the difference between this new vaccine and the old ones? Is it dangerous? Does it include new medicines or chemicals that the old vaccine did not? The answers are simple, and not as mysterious as they may seem.
A flu vaccine usually comes in a trivalent form – this means that it fights three strains of the influenza virus. Last year, however, protection against these three strains was not enough – many people who had been vaccinated still caught the flu. Why? The flu that was predominant in the later part of the flu season was a strain of flu that had not been included in the trivalent vaccination. The trivalent form protects against two A-type viruses and one B-type, while the quadrivalent protects against a second B-type.
This vaccination is all-new to doctor’s offices, hospitals, and the market in general as of this year. This means that consumers will be protected against the nasty fourth form of the flu, all while getting their usual shot or nasal vaccination. The only thing that has really changed is the addition of an inactive fourth form of influenza to the vaccination, in hopes of preventing a large outbreak like last season.
Unfortunately, this quadrivalent vaccine is running out quickly. If you wish to buy flu vaccine of a quadrivalent type, you’ll need to act fast. Contact your doctor, hospital, or place of flu vaccination to ask about getting a quadrivalent vaccination.