Flu shots may help protect heart failure patients from early death, new research suggests.
Heart failure is a leading cause of death and hospitalization in the United States, and the flu is a common complication in these patients.
The new study, published in the journal Circulation, found that patients with heart failure who received a flu shot were 38 percent less likely to die during the influenza season than those who did not get the vaccine.
“The findings of this study add to the growing body of evidence that influenza vaccination is a potentially life-saving intervention for patients with heart failure,” said study author Dr. Daniel Muñoz-Torrent, of the Cardiology Department at Vall d’Hebron University Hospital in Barcelona, Spain.
“Given the high mortality associated with heart failure, and the significant burden of influenza in these patients, routine vaccination of heart failure patients should be strongly considered.”
In the study, the researchers analyzed data from more than 4,000 heart failure patients who were hospitalized with the flu between 2010 and 2014.
They found that the death rate among patients who received a flu shot was 3.4 percent, compared to 5.6 percent among those who did not get the vaccine.
“This is the first study to our knowledge to evaluate the relationship between influenza vaccination and mortality in a large cohort of patients with heart failure,” said study author Dr. Josep Redon, also of the Cardiology Department at Vall d’Hebron University Hospital.
“Our findings support the current recommendations from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology that all patients with heart failure should receive the influenza vaccine.”
Previous research has shown that the flu shot can reduce the risk of death in heart failure patients by up to 50 percent.
The new study is the first to evaluate the benefit of the flu vaccine in this population in real-world conditions.
“The findings of this study should encourage all patients with heart failure to get vaccinated against influenza,” said Dr. Redon.
“Vaccination is safe, effective, and potentially life-saving, and it should be considered a cornerstone of heart failure management.”
According to a new study, getting a flu shot may help protect patients with heart failure from early death.
During the study, researchers looked at data from over 4,000 patients with heart failure. They found that those who got a flu shot were less likely to be hospitalized or die from flu-related complications than those who did not get a flu shot.
Previous studies have shown that the flu can be especially dangerous for people with heart failure, and that getting a flu shot can help protect them. This new study adds to the evidence that flu shots are important for people with heart failure, and that they can help to protect against early death.
If you have heart failure, talk to your doctor about whether a flu shot is right for you.