ASTHMA: Get flu vaccine to reduce risks

As we move into flu season, it's time for people with asthma to protect themselves against the flu virus.

Sunday, 16th December 2018, 3:30 pm

New analysis by Asthma UK reveals that around a million Brits with asthma are at risk because they’re not planning to get the flu vaccine, even though eight in 10 people with asthma say flu is a top trigger for life-threatening asthma attacks.

That’s why Asthma UK is urging people with asthma to get the flu vaccine as soon as possible to reduce their risk of catching the virus and prevent a life-threatening asthma attack.

The flu virus can increase the inflammation in the airways so they can become narrow, leaving people coughing, wheezing and gasping for breath. This increased inflammation also means people are more likely to react to other triggers, such as pollen or pollution, increasing the chance of an asthma attack.

Every asthma attack is potentially life-threatening, with around three people dying from one in the UK every day.

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Unfortunately, there are lots of myths about the flu jab not working, causing side effects or causing flu.

But the vaccine can’t give you flu, the potential side effects are minimal and it could save people’s lives by preventing a life-threatening asthma attack.

Asthma UK’s website provides all the information you need about flu – visit asthma.org.uk

Dr Andy Whittamore,

Clinical Lead at Asthma UK and a practising GP