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Flu Shot May Curb Respiratory Infections in People With Heart Failure
Doctors should consider high-dose vaccine for those over 65, study suggests

By Robert Preidt

THURSDAY, Feb. 2, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Flu and pneumonia vaccines may reduce heart failure patients' risk of dangerous respiratory infections, a new review suggests.

More than 5 million Americans have heart failure, when the heart is too weak to pump enough blood to meet the body's needs. Respiratory infections are the leading cause of hospitalization for people with heart failure. These infections are associated with high death rates in a hospital, the review authors said.

The researchers reviewed studies published from January 1990 to July 2016. These studies suggested that flu and pneumonia vaccines seem to help protect people with heart failure from life-threatening respiratory infections.

People older than 65 with heart failure may benefit more from high-dose vaccination, the researchers said.

"Vaccination represents a low-cost intervention that may be able to prevent the significant disease, death and cost associated with heart failure," said senior author Dr. Robert Mentz, an assistant professor of medicine at Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, N.C.

But, the evidence is still limited, Mentz's team said. That's because most vaccination clinical trials either haven't included heart failure patients or haven't looked at the impact of vaccines in heart failure patients.

More research is needed, the authors said.

The review was published Feb. 1 in the journal JACC: Heart Failure.

"A deeper understanding of current vaccination practices within the heart failure population is necessary to guide population-level interventions aimed at improving vaccination rates," Mentz said in a journal news release.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends yearly flu vaccination for adults with heart failure. Heart societies such as the American College of Cardiology also advise an annual flu shot. The ACC also recommends pneumonia vaccination for people with heart failure.

More information

The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has more on heart failure.

SOURCE: JACC: Heart Failure, news release, Feb. 1, 2017

Copyright © 2017 HealthDay. All rights reserved. URL:http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=719188

Resources from HONselect: HONselect is the HON's medical search engine. It retrieves scientific articles, images, conferences and web sites on the selected subject.
Heart
Heart Failure, Congestive
Infection
Respiratory Tract Infections
Pneumonia
Blood
Research Personnel
Death
The list of medical terms above are retrieved automatically from the article.

Disclaimer: The text presented on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It is for your information only and may not represent your true individual medical situation. Do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare professional.
Be advised that HealthDay articles are derived from various sources and may not reflect your own country regulations. The Health On the Net Foundation does not endorse opinions, products, or services that may appear in HealthDay articles.


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