Vaccinations & travel medicine

Flu season 2023 has started - get vaccinated in time

Effective immediately, all of our locations have the flu vaccine in stock for you. To help protect you from getting sick and avoid a severe flu outbreak, you can now get vaccinated at your Avi Medical practice.

What is the flu?

Behind this is an infection caused by influenza viruses. Influenza is caused by viruses that are transmitted through droplets - for example when sneezing, coughing or talking. In addition, you can transmit the viruses from hand to hand, for example when shaking hands or via contaminated objects (for example door handles). The risk of infection is particularly high where there are many people, for example in public transport, workplaces, schools or shopping areas.
The real flu (influenza) is sometimes hardly distinguishable from a harmless cold (flu-like infection). In about one third, influenza begins suddenly with a high fever and headache, sore throat and aching limbs. Dry cough and unusually severe fatigue are also characteristic. In addition, sweating and sore throat are possible. However, it can also be severe, causing pneumonia, for example, and even death.
Complications mainly affect people with pre-existing conditions as well as people of advanced age. Pregnant women are also at increased risk, especially for pneumonia,

Who and when should be vaccinated against influenza?

The Permanent Vaccination Commission (STIKO) recommends vaccination against influenza for all persons over 60 years of age. There are further groups of people who may need vaccination, you can find them here.

The flu vaccination must be repeated every year with the current, adapted vaccine, as flu viruses can change very quickly. The best time for this is in October/November, as it takes about 14 days for the vaccination protection to build up.

Vaccination is especially recommended for the following groups of people:

- People who are over 60 years old

- People with underlying diseases

- Pregnant women from the second trimester onwards

- medical staff and caregivers

- Residents of retirement and nursing homes

How is the vaccination carried out and what must be observed?

The flu vaccine is a dead vaccine. The vaccination is given into your upper arm muscle. Occasionally, due to the stimulation of the body's own defences after the vaccination, there may be redness or swelling at the injection site, which may also hurt. General symptoms such as fever, shivering or sweating, tiredness, headaches and muscle aches may also occur in the first few days after vaccination. Such vaccination reactions usually subside after a few days.

How can I get vaccinated at Avi Medical? 

To check whether you have been vaccinated, simply make an appointment for a vaccination status check at one of our Avi Medical practices and talk to our medical team. They will advise you in detail whether you are already protected or whether you should receive a vaccination. The doctors will also check whether there are other vaccinations that would be useful for you and will carry these out directly if necessary.

How are influenza viruses transmitted?

From person to person
The flu is very contagious. When a person sneezes, coughs or talks, tiny droplets of nasopharyngeal secretions containing the virus become airborne and can be inhaled by other people in the vicinity.

The viruses are also passed on via the hands if they have come into contact with virus-containing secretions. If the mouth, nose or eyes are subsequently touched, the flu viruses can enter the body via the mucous membranes.

Via contaminated objects
The pathogens can also adhere to door handles, grab rails, stair rails or similar objects and be passed on from there via the hands.

What are the signs of illness in people with influenza?

About one third of all illnesses typically start with a sudden feeling of illness, fever, sore throat and dry cough, accompanied by muscle, limb, back or head pain. Especially in older people, the signs of illness are often not as pronounced and are more like a cold. In an uncomplicated course, the symptoms disappear after 5 to 7 days. However, the cough can last much longer.

The severity of the illness can vary. A flu infection can run its course with mild symptoms or even without any symptoms at all. However, the flu can also be accompanied by severe courses of the disease, which in the worst case can lead to death.

The most common complication is pneumonia. In children, middle ear infections can also develop. Rarely, inflammations of the brain or the heart muscle can occur.

When does the disease break out and how long is one contagious?

After infection, the first symptoms are felt relatively quickly after 1 to 2 days. The infected person can already be contagious on the day before the onset of symptoms and up to approx. 1 week after the first signs of illness appear. Children or people with a weakened immune system can also excrete the pathogens for longer.