New tiny needle flu vaccine approved
The vaccine can be used on adults between the ages of 18 and 64 years and differs from traditional flu vaccines because it uses a syringe with a very short needle.
The new Fluzone product has a needle that is 90 percent shorter than normal needles at just one tenth of an inch long.
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Normally, flu vaccines are administered through a needle with a length of approximately one to one-and-a-half inches but Sanofi says the sight of such a long needle is distressing for patients.
Rather than injecting the vaccine into the muscle like previous flu shots, the Fluzone injects it into skin cells.
Sanofi says that the dermis – the layer just under the surface – has a high concentration of dendritic cells, which are one of the key players in generating an immune response.
Although the company has said that patients prefer the new shorter needle that the Fluzone Intradermal has to offer, it is not yet known whether it is any less painful than longer needles.
However, company research did find that reactions around the injection site (redness, swelling and itching), were more common with the new vaccine.
It is hoped that now the Fluzone Intradermal has been made available in America it will increase the rates of influenza immunisation in adults in the US.
Flu shots are recommended for most American’s although many adults don’t have them.