Image of influenza virus shattering glass heart

In patients with
cardiovascular disease

Flu Can Have A Devastating Impact1

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Your older patients with cardiovascular diseases are at increased risk of a first major cardiovascular event when diagnosed with influenza2

In a study of the correlation between influenza and cardiovascular events, within 1 week of influenza infection, adults had2:

Glass Heart Icon

~10x 

increased risk of a first heart attack

In subjects at least 40 years of age or older2,a

an=1227

Glass brain icon

~8x 

increased risk of a first stroke

In subjects 40 years of age or older2,b

bn=762

Study limitations: Individual noninfluenza respiratory virus impact and age impact on vascular events were not investigated. During the study period there were changes in microbiological testing practices (eg, PCR was not widely used in 2004). The day after the date of respiratory sampling was used as the start of the risk period.2

The American Heart Association urges eligible individuals aged 6 months and older to get their annual flu shot3

Protecting against influenza can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular events and can help keep your patients out of the hospital.4

References:

  •  Estimated flu-related illnesses, medical visits, hospitalizations, and deaths in the United States — 2019–2020 flu season. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. October 1, 2021. Accessed November 11, 2021. https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/burden/2019-2020.html 
  •  Warren-Gash C, Blackburn R, Whitaker H, McMenamin J, Hayward AC. Laboratory-confirmed respiratory infections as triggers for acute myocardial infarction and stroke: a self-controlled case series analysis of national linked datasets from Scotland. Eur Respir J. 2018;51. doi:10.1183/13993003.01794-2017 
  •  Top health organizations urge flu and COVID-19 vaccines to protect vulnerable, reduce burden on hospitals. American Heart Association. September 27, 2021. Accessed November 11, 2021. https://newsroom.heart.org/news/top-health-organizations-urge-flu-and-covid-19-vaccines-to-protect-vulnerable-reduce-burden-on-hospitals 
  •  MacIntyre CR, Mahimbo A, Moa AM, Barnes M. Influenza vaccine as a coronary intervention for prevention of myocardial infarction. Heart. 2016;102:1953-1956.