FluMist Shot Down Again

ACIP voted against supporting live-attenuated influenza vaccine
(Precision Vaccinations)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), voted unanimously on June 21, 2017, to continue its recommendation against the live-attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) for the 2017-2018 season.

The LAIV is offered as a nasal spray.

FluMist Quadrivalent is a vaccine that is sprayed into the nose to help protect against influenza. It can be used in children, adolescents, and adults ages 2 through 49. FluMist Quadrivalent is similar to MedImmune’s trivalent influenza vaccine, except it provides protection against an additional influenza strain.

FluMist Quadrivalent may not prevent influenza in everyone who gets vaccinated.

The Pittsburgh Vaccination Research Group (PittVax) is one of a few sites across the U.S. that track flu in patients who received or did not receive the annual flu vaccine.

The data PittVax collected led to the CDC's recommendation against LAIV last year after data from the two previous flu seasons showed it to be ineffective at preventing influenza A, which is typically the most common strain.

“The CDC is being appropriately cautious and doing the right thing based on available data,” said lead author Kenneth J. Smith, M.D., M.S., professor of medicine and clinical and translational science in Pitt’s School of Medicine.

“However, our study finds that it would take only relatively small changes to tip the scales back in favor of offering the LAIV, so close monitoring is very important.”

In the past, the LAIV was a common vaccine offered to children 2 to 8 years old.

The CDC Vaccine Price Lists provides current private sector vaccine prices for general information.