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Facts about flu shots and meningitis

Military nurse giving a female National Guard employee a flu shot.

(Photo: Flickr/The National Guard)

Facts about flu shots and meningitis

October 15, 2012

Q: Are flu shots safe to take because of the meningitis scare? Also, if you've been sick with a stomach problem or cold, should you wait?

A: Well, flu shots are usually safe. As such there is no risk for getting meningitis. Please do not panic.

Serious side effects from the flu shot are very rare. Though some people have cold-like symptoms, including sniffles, headache, runny nose, sore throat, cough, and body aches for a day or two.

If you're not feeling well but only have mild symptoms, then you can go for the flu vaccine. Otherwise it is advised that you wait and get flu vaccine after you are completely healthy.

-- Answer from Dr. Robert F., a physician on JustAnswer.

For more updated information about the U.S. fungal meningitis outbreak, check this page at the CDC site.