Thursday, September 24, 2009

Canadian Study Claims Flu Shot Increases Chances of Contracting H1N1 Swine Flu

For many in Canada and around the world, it is an annual fall tradition – rolling up your sleeve for the once-a-year flu shot.

Medical experts for years have been telling us these shots are good for everyone, as they really do help keep society safe from the flu, by reducing contamination rates.

This may change, if an unpublished Canadian study proves to be true. The series of studies from British Columbia, Quebec and Ontario says that those who got a seasonal flu shot last year are almost twice as likely to catch H1N1 Swine Flu when compared to those who have not had the annual vaccination.

The study’s lead writer’s have submitted a scientific paper to a medical journal, but won’t comment on it until it has been reviewed by other medical experts.

Vaccination; 041028-N-9864S-021 Yokosuka, Japa...Image via Wikipedia

Traditionally, medical journals prohibit researchers from discussing their unpublished work, prior to it being reviewed and published.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is concerned that this unpublished study will deter people from getting their annual flu shot, and is encouraging its member countries to promote and provide both seasonal and H1N1 Swine Flu pandemic flu shots.

News of the unpublished study isn’t new – the Public Health Agency of Canada knew of this study some time ago and has been keeping a low profile while it tries to determine the validity of the research.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control also knew of the unpublished study, and has dismissed it due to lack of similar evidence in the States.

Whether the study is accurate or flawed remains the question for medical experts – but the immediate concern remains: should I or shouldn’t I get a flu shot this year?

Flu shots aren’t golden tickets promising those who get them a flu-free season. Every year, microbiologists, virologists and other scientists work together to crack the flu vaccine secret code for the following flu season. Their research is based on the trends going on around the world with the current flu variants, and the seriousness of those infections.

The flu virus is usually made to counter the effects of three strains of the flu – and these three strains are the ones those medical miracle workers believe are the most likely ones to harm the public.

That’s why the flu vaccine may differ in results from year-to-year. Usually the brains behind the vaccine are pretty accurate, but just two years ago they admitted defeat, as they publicly stated that they had predicted the wrong variants, and so the flu shot didn’t do as much good as it could have.

But with this new unpublished study making the rounds of medical experts desk’s the question isn’t if the annual seasonal flu shot will work, but rather, will it make you more likely to catch the deadly H1N1 Swine Flu?

And that’s the question I’d like to know the answer too.

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