Flu Vaccinations Safe for Egg Allergic Patients

Dr. Sara Narayan

Influenza is a serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death.  Every flu season is different, and influenza infection can affect people differently.  Millions of people get the flu every year, hundreds of thousands of people are hospitalized and thousands or tens of thousands of people die every year from flu related causes.

Most influenza vaccines contain a very small amount of egg protein.  However, studies that have examined flu shots in both egg allergic and non-egg allergic patients show that severe allergic reactions in patients with egg allergy are unlikely.  In a recent vaccine study, there were 10 cases of anaphylaxis after more than 7.4 million doses of inactivated flu vaccine.  Most of these cases of anaphylaxis were not related to the egg protein present in the vaccine.

The CDC and its Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices have updated their guidelines on egg allergy and receipt of influenza (flu) vaccines. Based on the new recommendations, people with egg allergies no longer need to be observed for an allergic reaction for 30 minutes after receiving a flu vaccine. Patients with severe egg allergy should receive the vaccine in a medical setting under the supervision of a health care provider who is able to recognize and manage severe allergic conditions.

As always, please call us with any questions or concerns you may have.


Sara NarayanDr. Sara Narayan is board certified in Allergy/Immunology and Pediatrics. She received her medical degree from St. George’s University School of Medicine. She completed her pediatric residency at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital in Westchester, NY and her allergy/immunology fellowship at SUNY Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn, NY. She practiced as a general pediatrician for two years before entering her subspecialty fellowship. Her clinical interests include pediatric asthma, seasonal allergies, food allergies, eczema and urticaria. Dr. Sara Narayan grew up in Groton and has recently returned to Massachusetts to practice medicine.

Leave a reply