People With Diabetes and Flu Shots

text message about diabetes and flu shots

If you have diabetes you have certainly been nagged at by your doctor to get a flu shot.  We’ve all heard it a million times.  People with diabetes must get a flu-shot or the world will start spinning in the opposite direction.

But why?

According to this Canadian Study, people with diabetes are 6% more likely to get hospitalized for the flu.

“This increased risk [for hospitalization] is small, but nonetheless is justification for targeting adults with diabetes to get vaccinated,” said Johnson, director of the Alliance for Canadian Health Outcomes Research in Diabetes at the University of Alberta.

Is a tiny increased risk of hospitalization worth it to you?  And how effective is the flu-vaccine anyway?  According to the Center For Disease Control, it’s close to impossible to measure exactly how effective a vaccine is…but they do say this:

While determining how well a flu vaccine works is challenging, in general, recent studies have supported the conclusion that flu vaccination benefits public health, especially when the flu vaccine is well matched to circulating flu viruses.

Kelly Rawlings wrote an article for Diabetes Forecast that has some flu-fighting tips for people living with diabetes.  Kelly suggests getting the vaccine for much of the same reasons that the Canadian study pointed out.  It’s also well into flu-season and I still haven’t received the vaccination.  So I’m wondering if it’s too late.  According to Kelly’s article, however, getting the shot even after the beginning of flu season is better than going without.

I have a doctor’s appointment in February and I will ask for my doctor’s advice then…but I feel that if I haven’t had the flu by then, perhaps the vaccine won’t be worth it.

Late last week I sent a Tweet out asking people in the online community if they get a flu-shot and why or why not.  The responses were very varied.  Plenty of people believe in getting the flu-shot:

And other people expressed that they didn’t feel that the flu-shot did them any good:

Do you get the flu-shot?  Why or why not?

6 thoughts on “People With Diabetes and Flu Shots

  1. I have never gotten a flu shot in my life. I tend to shy away from optional shots if I can. My husband got his only flu shot two years ago when his work was paying, and he got the flu very badly for the first time in years. He won’t ever get another. I did get vaccinated for pneumonia however.

  2. I work for a pediatric hospital where the flu vaccine is required. Regardless, since I have Type 1 and Rheumatoid Arthritis, my doctor doesn’t seem like he’d take no for an answer 🙂 I’ve had the pneumonia vaccine as well.

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