-- Robert Preidt
TUESDAY, May 17 (HealthDay News) -- Concern about vaccine safety
is one of the main reasons why some parents in the United States
are reluctant to have their asthmatic children vaccinated against
the flu, researchers report.
The new study also found that parents who don't vaccinate their
asthmatic children are less likely to consider flu to be a trigger
for their child's asthma.
Flu vaccination is recommended for all children, but especially
for those with asthma because flu can trigger asthma flare-ups.
The study included 237 parents who had at least one child with
asthma and took part in a national survey conducted in the summer
Seventy percent of the parents said they had their child
vaccinated against seasonal or H1N1 influenza during the 2009-2010
flu season, and 65 percent said they planned to have their child
vaccinated in the 2010-2011 flu season.
Parents who didn't vaccinate their children were less likely
than those who did vaccinate to believe that getting the flu was a
"very important" asthma trigger (53 percent vs. 72 percent), and
more likely to be concerned that the vaccine would cause side
effects (60 percent vs. 26 percent) or make their child sick (41
percent vs. 13 percent).
The study was scheduled for presentation May 16 at the American
Thoracic Society's international conference in Denver.
"Not surprisingly, parents who felt that their children were likely to experience an asthma attack when they got a respiratory infection were more likely to get their child vaccinated," study author Dr. Toby Lewis, an assistant professor of pediatric pulmonology at C.S. Mott Children's Hospital in Ann Arbor, Mich., said in a society news release.
"Worries about potential side effects of the vaccine emerged as an important factor for families who did not have their child vaccinated. The group as a whole indicated that their physician was an important source of health information for their family, suggesting that physicians may have an opportunity to advise families about this important preventative measure," Lewis added.
"The results will help physicians, public health professionals and health educators tailor messages most effectively to this group of families," Lewis concluded.
The American Lung Association has more about
children and asthma.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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