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Flu Facts for People with Cancer

Over 90,000 adults will be hospitalized and more than 6,000 will die because of influenza in one year in the United States.

Adults who receive the flu vaccine are less likely:
  • to visit their healthcare provider for the flu.
  • to be hospitalized for the flu.
  • to die from the flu.

Patients with cancer who receive the flu vaccine are also less likely to develop and experience consequences from the flu.

Key issues and concerns for cancer patients

  • Discuss the flu vaccine with your doctor at your next office visit.
  • the flu shot from last year does not protect you this year.
  • Just because you've never had the flu doesn't mean you can't or won't this year.
  • You cannot get the flu from receiving the flu shot.
  • Ask your provider about allergy/intolerance that occasionally occurs with the flu vaccine.
  • The flu shot does not protect against non-influenza viruses.
  • Cancer and chemotherapy treatments weaken your immune system, making you more likely to develop serious complications from the flu.
  • The flu shot is usually covered by insurance so check your policy.

If you are a U-M Cancer Center patient

Flu shots are being administered in reception A on level B1 [going to a new websiteView internal map]. Patients can come in and get vaccinated without a scheduled encounter/appointment with their UMCCC provider.

Still have questions?

The nurses at Cancer AnswerLine™ have answers. Call 1-800-865-1125 and you'll get a personal response from one of our registered nurses, who have years of experience in caring for people with cancer.

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Speak with a Cancer nurse: 1-800-865-1125