New research suggests that a flu shot my reduce the risk of having a stroke by 25%.
Evidence that respiratory infections trigger stroke suggests that influenza or pneumococcal (pneumonia) vaccination might prevent stroke. Investigators from the University of Lincoln and the University of Nottingham looked at medical records of more than 47,000 patients for the years 2001 through 2009 to investigate whether influenza or pneumococcal vaccination or both together were associated with reduced risk of stroke or transient ischaemic attack (TIA).
They included 26,784 cases of stroke and 20,227 cases of TIA with equal numbers of matched controls. Influenza vaccination within-season was associated with 24% reduction in stroke risk but no reduction in TIA. Stroke risk was significantly lower with early (September to mid-November) but not later influenza vaccination (mid-November onwards).
Pneumococcal vaccination was not associated with reduced risk of stroke or TIA.
Pneumonia and influenza together are among the top 10 leading causes of death among those over age 65. It is estimated that more than 36,000 Americans die each year from influenza-related illness and 40,000 die from pneumococcal infection.
Enough said. Check with your doctor.
Tags: detecting stroke, flu shot, mini stroke, preventing stroke, stroke symptoms