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A flu shot for the squeamish...
9/28/2011

Squeamish about getting a flu shot? You may be in luck.

This fall, people seeking flu shots may be able to skip the big, scary needle and choose a new short-needle flu shot, called Fluzone intradermal.

Island Drug is one of the few pharmacies in the area to get this special flu shot! Quantities are limited!

Fluzone intradermal uses a shorter, thinner needle called a microneedle to give flu shots just under the skin, rather than deeper in the muscle like standard flu shots.

The shots' manufacturer, Sanofi Pasteur, said the microneedles are less than one-10th of an inch long and are about the width of a human hair. Standard flu shots are given with needles up to one and a half inches long. Delivering the shot to the skin instead of the muscle can help patients avoid the deep muscle ache associated with a standard flu shot.

The shot delivers the vaccine to a layer of cells just underneath the surface of the skin, called dendritic cells. Dr. Ralph Tripp, professor of infectious diseases at the University of Georgia, said this is an ideal spot for a vaccine, since these cells deal directly with the body's immune system.

Although people may feel better about avoiding a longer needle, the side effects for short- and long-needle shots are about the same. According to the Food and Drug Administration, patients reported pain, redness and swelling at the site of the injections with both short and long needles, although these symptoms were a little worse in patients who used the short-needle shot. Other side effects included fever and some muscle aches.

The new shot saves more than discomfort at the doctor's office. It also uses less of the vaccine than a standard shot. But despite the lower dose size, clinical trials of the shot showed it to be just as effective. Click here for the full article: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/flu-shot-lets-patients-skip-big-needle/story?id=14459743

For more information on all immunizations offered at Island Drug, Click Here