Published in IJCP August 2018
Advantages of Subunit Influenza Vaccine: An Overall Perspective
August 04, 2018 | Raju Shah, Suhas Prabhu

Influenza, a contagious respiratory infection, is caused by influenza virus A, B and C in humans. Chills, fever, headache, myalgia, fatigue and respiratory discomfort are the most commonly observed symptoms, whereas progression of illness may result in bronchitis, pneumonia, secondary bacterial infections, acute respiratory distress, cardiovascular diseases and even death. Management of influenza involves high treatment costs and functional losses. Therefore, immunization against influenza is the best method to prevent it. Seasonal trivalent influenza vaccine (TIV) formulations, i.e., whole inactivated virus (WIV) vaccines, “detergent”-split vaccines (SIV) and subunit vaccines (SUV), use inactivated influenza antigens. There are live attenuated influenza viruses vaccines also available, which we will not be discussed in this article. Administration of WIV vaccines leads to an increased rate of and more severe adverse reactions; therefore, less reactogenic forms of influenza vaccine, SIV and SUV are preferably being used. The present review compares SUV and SIV in terms of tolerability, and reactogenicity. Furthermore, the immunizing and reactogenicity profile of SUV in high-risk subgroups of the populations (children, elderly, pregnant women, liver transplant patients, asthmatics, diabetics and nursing home residents) has also been discussed.