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Having a Flu Vaccine

The flu is unpleasant for anyone but if you have CGD, it can lead to further problems.

People with the condition can fight the flu virus normally. But having flu may lead to nasty bacterial pneumonia and this can be more severe for people who have CGD.

If you have CGD, you should have an injection from your doctor which will help protect you against the flu.


Who should have the flu vaccine?

Annual flu jabs are recommended for older people and those with medical conditions, including CGD and immune deficiencies. Within the next two years, children will also routinely receive the annual flu vaccine to all children. 

Find out more about how the NHS has extended the flu vaccincation programme.


When do you need to have the flu vaccine?

You need to have the flu vaccine every year. The vaccine won’t cover absolutely every strain of flu but it will give protection from most so is strongly recommended.
It won’t cover every strain of flu but will protect from most – so is strongly recommended.

For maximum protection, you need to have the vaccine before the start of the flu season, in the autumn. If this isn’t possible, it is still worth having later in the year when flu is still circulating.


Are there any side effects?

The most common side effect of the flu jab is redness, pain and swelling where you have had the injection.  This should clear up after a few days.  The virus in the flu vaccine is killed, so you can’t catch flu from the vaccine.


What should you do if you want to organise a flu vaccine?

Ask your GP or physician to give you the flu vaccine. Most UK GP practises and treating physicians will set up clinics over the autumn before the flu season starts.

For more information on the flu vaccine, visit the NHS choices website.  



This advice was provided by Dr Catherine Cale, Consultant Immunologist, and Professor David Goldblatt, Professor of Vaccinology and Immunology, at Great Ormond Street Hospital, London. August 2012