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Influenza Vaccine Cuts Flu-Related Pediatric ICU Admissions — Physician’s First Watch

Medical News |
March 28, 2014

Influenza Vaccine Cuts Flu-Related Pediatric ICU Admissions

By Amy Orciari Herman

Complete vaccination coverage against influenza (e.g., 2 doses in young children) is associated with about an 80% reduction in flu-related pediatric intensive care unit admissions, according to a case-control study in the Journal of Infectious Diseases.

Between 2010 and 2012, U.S. researchers examined data on some 45 children who were admitted to 21 pediatric ICUs with confirmed influenza, 170 ICU controls without influenza, and 90 community-based controls.

Vaccination coverage was low, with just 18% of influenza cases, 31% of ICU controls, and 51% of community controls fully vaccinated. In adjusted analyses, full vaccination was 74% to 82% effective in preventing influenza-related ICU admission. Partial vaccination coverage provided no benefit.

Reader Comments (1)

SHELDON BALL Physician, Geriatrics, Anvita Health

This is a classic example of how expressing findings in relative terms gives the impression of a much larger impact than expressing them in absolute terms. It is disappointing that the editor did not attempt to provide a number needed to treat. I would think J Watch would be more attentive to providing absolute risks.

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