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Influenza vaccine may reduce risk of heart disease and death
Date:10/27/2012

ative of patients such as those in North America and Canada in particular could help answer this question," he says.

This research could also potentially boost use of the vaccine, which Udell believes is still woefully low. "The use of the vaccine is still much too low, less than 50 per cent of the general population; it's even poorly used among health care workers," he says. "Imagine if this vaccine could also be a proven way to prevent heart disease."

An Ipsos Reid survey conducted by B.C. and Quebec Lung Associations this year found that 36 per cent of Canadians reported having received a flu shot in 2011.

And according to the Public Health Agency of Canada's National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI), the 2008 Adult National Immunization Coverage Survey found that vaccination rates for adults 18 to 64 years of age with a chronic medical condition is low at 35 per cent.

It also found that non-institutionalized seniors aged 65 and older have higher coverage, at 66 per cent.

According to the NACI, rates for both groups have declined somewhat since their 2006 survey and fall short of the 80 per cent national targets for influenza vaccine coverage in adults under age 65 with chronic conditions and in seniors.

People with ICDS who get the shot have fewer adverse events The second study, conducted by cardiologists Drs. Ramanan Kumareswaran and Sheldon Singh from Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre examined the use of the influenza vaccine in patients with implantable cardiac defibrillators or ICDs.

"Anecdotes suggest that patients have more ICD shocks during flu season. We were trying to figure out what we can do to reduce the amount of shocks in (our clinic's) ICD population during the flu season," says Dr. Kumareswaran.

Patients with ICDs that had appointments at the Sunnybrook Hospital ICD clinic between September 1st 2011 and November 31st 2011 completed a survey that identifie
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Contact: Jane-Diane Fraser
jfraser@hsf.ca
613-569-4361 x273
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada
Source:Eurekalert

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