Health Services offers preventative flu shots

By Chris Sarvadi
September 27, 2010

Cabrini College Student Health Services are offering seasonal influenza shots in the school nurse’s office.  The cost of the shot is $25 and it can be credited to your account.

The influenza virus causes the flu.  Coughing, sneezing, sharing food or drink and nasal secretions can spread the illness.

Everyone is at risk for the flu.  Symptoms of the flu include fever, sore throat, chills, fatigue, coughing, headache and muscle aches.  The time from transmission to infection is around two days, according to The World Health Organization.

Cabrini College students should be aware that other illnesses have the same symptoms and are easily mistaken for the flu.

“As a resident student, we ask you to live with 120 people in a building and getting vaccinated really reduces your risk of infection,” Susan Fitzgerald, Cabrini College nurse, said.

The H1N1 (pandemic) influenza was last year’s epidemic.  Cabrini College had 31 cases of the H1N1 influenza, according to Health Services at Cabrini College.

“I didn’t know I had it at first.  I actually found out Labor Day weekend.  I remember my whole body ached.  I couldn’t stop sweating and my fever wouldn’t go away,” Gianna Shikitino, senior communication major, said.  “I survived swine ‘09.”

The two types of vaccines are active and inactivated attenuated and Cabrini College has 180 doses of the inactivated vaccine.  This year’s vaccine provides protection against the H1N1 influenza, which means you don’t have to feel like senior communication major, Joe Cahill.

“I felt like a train wreck.  With a fever, shivers and nausea, my whole body ached in pain,” Cahill said.

The vaccine takes about two weeks to fully develop.  The infected may develop local redness and swelling around the area of the shot.

“You cannot get the flu from the flu shot,” Fitzgerald said.

The WHO recommends a vaccine that provides protection from the three most common flu strains.  The vaccine that the college’s nurse issues is one that the WHO recommends.

The most effective way to prevent illness is to get vaccinated according to the WHO.  Vaccination is most effective when circulating viruses correspond with the vaccine viruses.

Main Line Health gives many preventative tips for staying healthy.  Wash your hands regularly, cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze and avoid touching your mouth, nose and eyes as germs can spread easily.

Flu season is just around the corner, which runs from October through March.   Students can get vaccinated at their local doctor or at the college nurse’s office.

For more information on the flu, please visit Main Line Health or visit the Cabrini College nurse.

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Chris Sarvadi

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