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Open Access Short Report

Self-reported adverse reactions in 4337 healthcare workers immunizations against novel H1N1 influenza

Harald Bias123, David Quarcoo23, Claus Meier-Wronski1, Sabine Wicker4, Joachim Seybold5, Albert Nienhaus6, David A Groneberg23* and Andres de Roux23

Author Affiliations

1 Occupational Medical Service, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Free University and Humboldt University, D-14195 Berlin, Germany

2 Institute of Occupational Medicine, Social Medicine and Environmental Medicine, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, 60590 Frankfurt am Main, Germany

3 Institute of Occupational Medicine, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Free University and Humboldt University, D-14195 Berlin, Germany

4 Occupational Health Service, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, 60590 Frankfurt am Main, Germany

5 Medical Directorate, Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Free University and Humboldt University, D-14195 Berlin, Germany

6 Institution for Statutory Accident Insurance and Prevention in the Health and Welfare Services, Department of Occupational Health Research, Pappelallee 35/37, Hamburg 22089, Germany

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BMC Research Notes 2011, 4:297  doi:10.1186/1756-0500-4-297

Published: 17 August 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The use of the 2009 H1N1 vaccine has generated much debate concerning safety issues among the general population and physicians. It was questioned if this is a safe vaccine. Therefore, we investigated the safety of an inactivated monovalent H1N1 pandemic influenza vaccine

Methods

We focused on the H1N1 pandemic influenza vaccine Pandemrix® and applied a self reporting questionnaire in a population of healthcare workers (HCWs) and medical students at a major university hospital.

Results

In total, 4337 individuals were vaccinated, consisting of 3808 HCWs and 529 medical students. The vaccination rate of the employees was higher than 40%. The majority of individuals were vaccinated in November 2009. In total, 291 of the 4337 vaccinations were reported to lead to one or more adverse reactions (6.7%). Local reactions were reported in 3.8%, myalgia and arthralgia in 3.7%, fatigue in 3.7%, headache in 3.1%.

Conclusions

Our data together with available data from several national and international institutions points to a safe pandemic influenza vaccine.

Keywords:
adverse reaction; healthcare worker; immunization; novel H1N1 influenza