June 27, 2013
1 min read

Influenza vaccine failed to affect infection risk with other respiratory viruses

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Children who received influenza vaccines were not more likely to have other respiratory viruses, contrary to children in other study samples, according to study data published online.

Edward A. Belongia, MD, of the Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation in Wisconsin, and researchers reported data on nasopharyngeal samples collected from 2,010 children and 1,738 adults with respiratory illnesses between 2004 and 2010.

The researchers noted influenza in 12% of the children and about 20% of the adults. Other non-influenza respiratory viruses were detected in 70% of children and 38% of adults who did not have influenza. Belongia and colleagues noted that their findings are inconsistent with other studies, which have shown a greater incidence of respiratory viruses associated with influenza vaccines. However, they wrote: “We cannot rule out the possibility that vaccination may alter susceptibility to non-influenza viruses in some circumstances. There is limited biological evidence to support an effect of nonspecific immunity across virus families or species, and limited evidence to support the role of vaccination in such immunity.”

Edward A. Belongia, MD, can be reached at 1000 N. Oak Ave., Marshfield, WI 54449; email: belongia.edward@marshfieldclinic.org.

Disclosure: All of the study researchers are employed by the Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation in Wisconsin.