Influenza virus vaccine, live (Into the nose)

Introduction

Influenza Virus Vaccine, Live (n-floo-EN-za VYE-rus VAX-een, lyve)

Keeps you from getting sick with an influenza virus ("catching the flu").

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

FluMist

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to influenza vaccine (a "flu shot") or eggs, egg products, gentamicin (Garamycin®), gelatin, or arginine (an amino acid). You should not use this medicine if you have HIV/AIDS, cancer, problems with your immune system, or a history of Guillain-Barre syndrome (a nerve problem). You should not use this medicine if you are also using any medicine that affects your immune system, like cancer treatments or steroids (such as prednisone). This medicine should not be given to a person under 17 years old who is also using aspirin or any medicine that contains aspirin. Some medicines that contain aspirin are Aggrenox®, Soma® Compound, Norgesic®, and many cold medicines.

How to Use This Medicine

Spray

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine.
  • This medicine is for use only in the nose. Do not get any of it in your eyes or on your skin. If it does get on these areas, rinse it off right away.
  • Before using the medicine, gently blow your nose to clear the nostrils.
  • Children 2 to 8 years of age who have not received the nasal vaccine before should receive 2 doses at least 1 month apart.
  • The influenza vaccine must be repeated each year to protect you from the flu.

If a dose is missed:

  • Most people need only one dose of this medicine.
  • If your child needs a second dose of this medicine, it is very important for your child to receive the second dose on schedule. If you must cancel the appointment for the second dose, make another appointment as close to that date as possible.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using any other medicines given through your nose, or any medicine that weakens the immune system (such as steroids, chemotherapy, or radiation).
  • Make sure you doctor knows if you are also using medicine to treat influenza virus infections (such as amantadine, oseltamivir, rimantadine, zanamivir, Flumadine®, Relenza®, Symmetrel®, or Tamiflu®). Wait at least 48 hours after your last dose of antiviral medicine before using FluMist®. It is best to wait at least 2 weeks after using FluMist® before using any antiviral medicines. Talk with your doctor if you are concerned about this.
  • You should not receive any other vaccines at the same time that you receive FluMist®.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have heart disease, kidney disease, diabetes, anemia or similar conditions such as sickle cell disease, or if you have ever had asthma or other breathing problems.
  • Tell your doctor about any health problems or illnesses you have had recently, especially if you have a fever. This medicine is for use by healthy adults under 50 years old, and children 2 years of age and older.
  • Tell your doctor if you spend time with a person who has health problems, such as someone you live with. This is especially important if you are often with a person who has problems with his or her immune system. Try to avoid being with anyone who has immune system problems for at least 21 days after you receive this vaccine.
  • Children under 2 years old are usually not given the flu vaccine nasal spray. Young children who need the flu vaccine are usually given the flu vaccine injection (a shot).
  • This medicine will not treat flu symptoms if you already have the virus.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Ear pain or discharge.
  • Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, and body aches.
  • Unusual tiredness or weakness.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Drowsiness.
  • Headache, or pain around the eyes and cheekbones.
  • Irritability.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Muscle pain.
  • Sneezing, or stuffy or runny nose.
  • Stomach pain.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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