Author | Dirk P. Dittmer, PhD

Articles

The Flu Vaccine in Cancer Patients: Insights From Other Immune-Suppressed Populations

November 15, 2010

Influenza immunization can have four possible outcomes: (1) the vaccine is well tolerated and protects against subsequent infection; (2) the vaccine is not well tolerated-ie, it is associated with an excess risk of morbidity or mortality-but it protects against subsequent infection; (3) the vaccine is well tolerated but confers no protection; and (4) the vaccine is associated with morbidity and/or mortality and confers no protection. The CDC has evaluated the likelihood of each of these scenarios and recommends vaccination of cancer patients. Boehmer and colleagues have reviewed the efficacy data for influenza vaccination in cancer patients and have arrived at a more differentiated view.