Recent research published in The Journal of the American Medical Association suggests that the flu shot may provide additional benefits to the cardiovascular well-being of senior citizens. This research, led by Jacob A. Udell, a clinician scientist at the University of Toronto, included almost 7,000 participants with an average age of 67 years. When compared with participants who did not receive the influenza vaccine, influenza-vaccinated participants were significantly less likely to experience a cardiovascular incident (such as a stroke or heart attack) during the one-year study follow-up time.  Finding fewer cardiovascular incidents among vaccinated individuals is especially important because it highlights the flu vaccine’s potential to decrease health care costs. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, influenza (commonly known as the flu) affects five to 20 per cent of the population, and results in over 20,000 hospitalizations each year. The strain influenza places on the immune system is known to make the elderly and those with chronic conditions (such as asthma, cancer, and diabetes) more likely to develop complications associated with the flu. These complications include, but are not limited to, pneumonia, dehydration, or infections.

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