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ADVANCE Perspective: Respiratory Views

From ACAAI: Adverse Reactions to Vaccines

Published November 7, 2009 11:40 AM by test test

A lot of patients who think they can't receive H1N1, seasonal influenza, or other vaccines; can. That's the kicker of new practice parameters on adverse reactions to vaccines released by a joint task force of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology and the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology at the ACAAI's annual meeting in Miami Beach.

The new parameters aim to correct common misconceptions among patients and healthcare providers about who can't receive vaccinations, including pregnant women and those with food allergies.

Most commonly, patients objecting to receiving vaccinations have experienced fever, achiness, or rashes that do not prevent them from receiving future vaccines. Of the roughly 235 million vaccines doses administered annually in the United States, only one in one million causes anaphylactic reactions.

"(But) even patients who are allergic (to eggs), the vast majority can be vaccinated," said Jonathon M. Kelso, MD, one of the chief editors on the practice parameters.

First, patients with suspected allergies to vaccines or vaccine components should be evaluated by an allergist, who can use intradermal skin tests to confirm whether or not the patient is reacting to the vaccine or vaccine components, said Dr. Kelso, of the division of allergy, asthma, and immonology at Scripps Clinic in San Diego, Calif.

For those who do test positive for egg allergies, graded doses of vaccines containing less than 1 microgram of egg protein may allow patients with to safely recieve the vaccine.

The full practice parameters were published in the October 2009 supplement to the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology and will be available at the website of the joint task force on practice parameters.

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