8 Mercury-Free Flu Shot Options

The CDC recommends annual flu shots for all persons aged six months and older. Here are some flu shot options.

mercury-free flu shot

A mercury-free flu shot can help you from getting sick over the winter.

While you may think that most naturopathic physicians are anti-vaccine, the truth is that many licensed NDs do recommend and/or administer vaccinations. As medical students, we learn about vaccinations and administer them in our teaching clinics.

I personally get a mercury-free flu shot from a local pharmacy every year. I do this because I’d rather not suffer through the flu myself and because I want to help protect my friends, family, and those who are most vulnerable to the deadly effects of the flu. I make sure that the vaccine I get does not contain mercury since I’d rather not be injecting this toxic heavy metal, even in minute amounts, into my body.

The CDC recommends annual flu shots for all persons aged six months and older. The purpose of this article is not to discuss the potential value or harm of influenza vaccinations. Rather, my goal is to let you know that if you do decide to get yourself or your children vaccinated, you have a choice as to whether your flu shot contains mercury. 

Retain Your Independence!

Download this expert FREE guide, Successful Aging: Social tips, home safety advice, balance exercises for seniors, and more to help you live independently.

Learn exercises and activities for seniors to keep you safe and let you age in place.

What is thimerosal?

Previously, many flu vaccines contain thimerosal,[1] a preservative that is 49.55% mercury by weight.[2] Thimerosal in flu vaccine rapidly breaks apart into ethyl-mercury compounds which have an affinity to bind to other compounds inside in the body.[2] This results in increased body and brain inorganic mercury concentrations, possibly increasing the risk of neurodevelopmental disorders in children and neurotoxicity in adults.[2-5]

The use of a thimerosal flu vaccine has been largely eliminated over the past decade in the United States, but the inactivated influenza vaccine still uses it in multi-dose vials that require a preservative. (There is also one single-dose vial listed below that contains thimerosal.)

Ask for these mercury-free flu vaccines

  • Fluarix Quadrivalent by GlaxoSmithKline. 0.5 mL single-dose prefilled syringe.
  • FluLaval Quadrivalent by ID Biomedical Corporation of Quebec (distributed by GlaxoSmithKline). 0.5 mL single-dose prefilled syringe.
  • Fluzone Quadrivalent by Sanofi Pasteur. 0.25 mL single-dose prefilled syringe; 0.5 mL single-dose prefilled syringe; and 0.5 mL single-dose vial.
  • Afluria by bioCSL. 0.5 mL single-dose prefilled syringe.
  • Fluarix by GlaxoSmithKline. 0.5 mL single-dose prefilled syringe.
  • FluLaval by ID Biomedical Corporation of Quebec (distributed by GlaxoSmithKline). 0.5 mL single-dose prefilled syringe.
  • Fluzone by Sanofi Pasteur. 0.5 mL single-dose prefilled syringe.
  • Fluzone Intradermal by Sanofi Pasteur. 0.1 mL prefilled microinjection system.

Refuse these mercury-containing flu vaccines

  • Fluzone Quadrivalent by Sanofi Pasteur. 5.0 mL multidose vial. Mercury content from thimerosal: 25 µg Hg/0.5 mL.
  • Afluria by bioCSL. 5.0 mL multidose vial. Mercury content from thimerosal: 24.5 µg Hg/0.5 mL.
  • FluLaval by ID Biomedical Corporation of Quebec (distributed by GlaxoSmithKline). 5.0 mL multidose vial. Mercury content from thimerosal: <25 µg Hg/0.5 mL.
  • Fluvirin by Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics.0.5 mL single-dose prefilled syringe. Mercury content from thimerosal: ≤1 µg Hg/0.5 mL.
  • Fluvirin by Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics. 5.0 mL multidose vial. Mercury content from thimerosal: 25 µg Hg/0.5 mL.
  • Fluzone by Sanofi Pasteur. 5.0 mL multidose vial. Mercury content from thimerosal: 25 µg Hg/0.5 mL.
  • FluLaval Quadrivalent by ID Biomedical Corporation of Quebec (distributed by GlaxoSmithKline). 5.0 mL multidose vial. Mercury content from thimerosal: <25 µg Hg/0.5 mL.

If you choose to get a flu shot this year, I urge you to follow my lead and receive a flu shot without mercury.

What is your own practice about getting the flu shot each year? Have you sought out mercury-free flu shot options, and are they readily available? What are your thoughts on flu shot options. Share your opinion on flu shots and mercury with our community of readers in the comments section below.

Originally published in 2014, this post has been updated.


[1] CDC. Influenza vaccines — United States, 2014–15 influenza season.

[2] Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health. 2014;11(9):9156-9170.

[3] Transl Neurodegener. 2013; 2: 25.

[4] Curr Med Chem. 2013;20(32):4060-9.

[5] J Appl Toxicol. 2013 Aug;33(8):700-11.

Anchor
Comments

Leave a Reply

×
Enter Your Log In Credentials
×
×

Please Log In

You are trying to access subscribers-only content. If you are a subscriber, use the form below to log in.

Subscribers will have unlimited access to the magazine that helps people live more sustainable, self-reliant lives, with feature stories on tending the garden, managing the homestead, raising healthy livestock and more!

×

Please Log In

You are trying to access subscribers-only content. If you are a subscriber, use the form below to log in.

Subscribers will have unlimited access to the magazine that helps the small-scale poultry enthusiast raise healthy, happy, productive flocks for eggs, meat or fun - from the countryside to the urban homestead!

Send this to friend

Hi,
I thought you might be interested in this article on http://universityhealthnews.com: 8 Mercury-Free Flu Shot Options

-- Read the story at http://universityhealthnews.com/daily/aging-independence/8-mercury-free-flu-shot-options/