Flu is a respiratory infection caused by a number of viruses. The viruses pass through the air and enter your body through your nose or mouth. Between 5% and 20% of people in the U.S. get the flu each year. The flu can be serious or even deadly for elderly people, newborn babies, and people with certain chronic illnesses.
Symptoms of the flu come on suddenly and are worse than those of the common cold. They may include
Most people with the flu recover on their own without medical care. People with mild cases of the flu should stay home and avoid contact with others, except to get medical care. If you get the flu, your health care provider may prescribe medicine to help your body fight the infection and lessen symptoms.
NIH: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
The seasonal flu shot is different every year based on which strains of the flu are most likely to cause the flu in that upcoming flu season. The inactivated influenza vaccine cannot give you the flu because there is no live flu virus in the shot. However, you can have minor side effects such as headache, fever, and fatigue or you can have major side effects such as an allergic reaction or Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS). References 1. Influenza (flu) vaccine. CDC. URL: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/vis/vis-statements/flu.pdf. Accessed April 9, 2018 2. Flu Shot. Medline Plus. URL: https://medlineplus.gov/flushot.html#summary. Accessed April 9, 2018
Animal studies have specified that Flu vaccines in pregnant women lead to an increased risk of miscarriages and fetal loss. So, Flu vaccines are not considered to be safe during pregnancy. FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has specified Influenza vaccination (flu shot) in Pregnancy category C which specifies that there was no fetal harm in animals administered with Influenza vaccination. But there is no adequate data for human studies that have demonstrated Influenza vaccination to be safe for use in women in any trimester of pregnancy. Women before taking flu vaccines are advised to notify their gynaecologist if they become pregnant or intend to become pregnant or are breastfeeding an infant. References 1. NIH H1N1 flu shots are safe for pregnant women URL: https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/h1n1-flu-shots-are-safe-pregnant-women Accessed January 29, 2018 2. Wikipedia Influenza vaccine URL: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Influenza_vaccine#Pregnancy Accessed January 29, 2018