Have you been putting off getting a flu shot this year? If you have an egg allergy, you may have heard that it’s not safe to receive your seasonal flu shot. That’s because flu vaccines are manufactured in a process using chicken eggs, which leaves trace amounts of the protein ovalbumin in the vaccine.
Until this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended that people with egg allergies should err on the side of caution and refrain from getting flu shots. Now, however, the CDC has updated its recommendation in light of new evidence that flu shots are safe, even for people with severe egg allergies.
“People with egg allergy of any severity can receive the influenza vaccine without any special precautions,” said Dr. Matthew Greenhawt of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology in a peer-reviewed paper cited by the CDC in its new guidelines.
Egg allergies are rare—affecting an estimated 2 percent of children in the United States—and most people outgrow their egg allergies by the time they reach adulthood. As such, egg allergies are typically only a cause for concern in pediatric settings.
This is good news for us, because eggs aren’t just useful for making flu vaccines; they’re also nutritious staples of a healthy diet. If you haven’t gotten your flu shot this season, it’s not too late!
Stay tuned for more updates from your source for all your favorite breeds of egg-laying hens—Chickens for Backyards.