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Special Alert ---- Influenza Vaccine

Dec. 18, 1996

Certain high-risk patients -- those with chronic heart or lung diseases or those who are immune suppressed -- may have received subpotent influenza vaccine and should consider additional vaccination according to the Food and Drug Administration.

FDA emphasized that since some protection probably exists from the first injection, priority should be given to any high-risk patient who hasn't yet had a flu shot over anyone being considered for a second shot.

Eleven batches of Parke Davis' Fluogen are in question. Parke Davis recalled those batches last month upon discovering the protection against the Nanchang flu, a new strain of the usually harsh Type A flu, wasn't as potent as thought. According to reports, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention studied elderly nursing home residents in New York and found those who got the recalled vaccine produced 39 percent fewer flu antibodies than nursing home residents who got another manufacturer's vaccine. A separate CDC study of healthy young health-care workers found no difference in antibody levels between the recalled and more potent vaccines. Healthy individuals who aren't at risk for flu complications do not need a second shot.

Recalled vaccine lots are: 00176P, 00276P, 00576P, 00586P, 00676P, 00686P, 00786P, 00886P, 00966P, 00986P and 01066P.

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