H1N1 vaccines are now US FDA approved

Current seasonal flu vaccines available in most clinics in the country are not protective to the 2009 H1N1 flu virus. Last September 15, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved 4 vaccines and they are now being sold in US pharmacies. The vaccines are manufactured by leading pharmaceutical companies: CSL Limited, MedImmune LLC, Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics Limited, and Sanofi Pasteur Inc. Word as to when this will be commercially available in the Philippines is not yet announced. The current vaccines are indicated only for adults and studies for effects in children are still under way.

They are contraindicated in persons with allergies to chicken eggs and other substances in the vaccine. Common adverse effects include a mild fever, body aches and fatigue. There is a nasal spray delivery system which could cause a runny nose, nasal congestion, and sore throat. Expectant management and proper counsel is still the rule.

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