Amid a turbulent flu season, where discussion seems to have centered around the efficacy of this year’s flu vaccine, heartening news from a study done by Public Health Ontario is showing that the flu vaccine may offer secondary protection against heart attacks.
Protection from heart attacks has been shown particularly for groups such as older people, and people with cardiovascular and other chronic conditions, who are at high risk of complications.
Not only is the risk of heart attack moderated by the flu vaccine, but the vaccine has been compared to other long-term health measures, for example quitting smoking, in its prevention capacity.
This news is especially important considering recent additional research showing that the risk of heart attack increases sixfold in the week following a positive flu diagnosis, particularly among vulnerable groups.
While younger, healthier people may not be at as high risk of complications from the flu, they too can transmit the influenza virus to others who may be at greater risk.
The International Federation on Ageing (IFA) 14th Global Conference theme Toward Healthy Ageing will feature current research on the connections between influenza, ageing, and chronic conditions.
For more information on these connections, contact the following experts from the IFA Expert Centre:
Dr. Jean-Pierre Michel Professor of Geriatric Medicine
Dr. Jean-Pierre Michel is a full Professor of Medicine at Geneva University Medical School and head of the geriatric ward
Dr. Regina Roller-Wirnsberger President
Professor of Geriatrics and Competency Based Curriculum Development at the Medical University of Graz in the Department of Internal Medicine