According to a recent article in MD Magazine, scientists at a private research company have made significant progress toward the development of an oral flu vaccine. As stated in the article, the researchers at Vaxart, Inc., “have found that an oral tablet for influenza vaccination can protect against infection just as well as – if not better than – a commercial injectable quadrivalent influenza vaccine.”
The oral flu vaccine recently underwent Phase 2 clinical trials, reportedly with very favorable results. MD Magazine reports that:
“A total of 48% of the participants who were immunized with the oral vaccine tablet were protected against the virus, according to the investigators, whereas only 38% of those immunized with the [injectable quadrivalent influenza vaccine (QIV)] were protected.
“Furthermore, 37% of those who were given the oral tablet vaccine went on to develop influenza infection compared with 44% of those who were immunized with QIV and 71% of those who received placebo.”
Will We Soon Have Access to an Oral Flu Vaccine?
The oral flu vaccine must still go through Phase 3 testing before it will be eligible to be released for widespread use in Phase 4 public trials. But, if it gets there, the oral flu vaccine could have significant and far-reaching implications. The oral flu vaccine (which is in the form of a tablet) would be easier to transport and easier to administer; and, if it is truly more effective than the ordinary flu shot, it could prevent an untold number of infections and related fatalities.
Eliminating the Risk of SIRVA for Flu Immunization
Another benefit of an oral flu vaccine would be elimination of the risk of shoulder injuries related to vaccine administration (SIRVA) during influenza immunizations. The annual flu shot is among the leading causes of SIRVA, and many forms of SIRVA – including brachial neuritis and shoulder bursitis – can have potentially-serious and long-term consequences. Individuals diagnosed with SIRVA will often be entitled to significant financial recoveries under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), including compensation for medical expenses, loss of income, and pain and suffering.
Since Phase 3 trials can last several years, we unfortunately cannot expect to be able to start asking for flu vaccine tablets at our doctors’ offices any time soon. The flu shot remains the best option for children and adults, although the CDC has re-approved use of the nasal spray flu vaccine for the 2018-2019 flu season. For now, flu shot recipients need to be aware of the risk of SIRVA, and anyone who experiences shoulder pain following a vaccination should seek medical treatment and legal representation as soon as possible.
Learn more about the symptoms of SIRVA: Can You Suffer an Injury Following the Flu Vaccine?
Contact National Vaccine Lawyer Leah V. Durant
The Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC is a vaccine injury law firm that represents individuals nationwide in claims under the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP). If you or a family member has been diagnosed with SIRVA following a flu shot, we encourage you to call 202-800-1711 or contact us online for a free and confidential consultation.
Leah Durant Bio
Experienced litigation attorney Leah Durant focuses on representing clients in complex vaccine litigation matters. Leah Durant is the owner and principal attorney of the Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC, a litigation firm based in Washington, DC. Leah Durant and her staff represent clients and their families who suffer from vaccine-related injuries, adverse vaccine reactions and vaccine-related deaths. The Law Offices of Leah V. Durant, PLLC is dedicated to assisting individuals in recovering the highest level of compensation as quickly and efficiently as possible. To learn more, contact vaccine attorney Leah Durant today.