Tamiflu

Did you know that Tamiflu isn’t just used to treat confirmed influenza?  If you’ve been exposed, Tamiflu can be taken to prevent the flu (or at least minimize symptoms) after you’ve been exposed.

016As a person on multiple immunosuppressant drugs, flu season is not my favorite time of year.  I get my influenza vaccine hoping to stay healthy, but the shot is only about 60% effective, and the world is full of people who don’t understand how irresponsible it is to contribute to the spread of preventable disease.  $35 to greatly reduce my chances of dying from the influenza seems like a bargain.

A few days ago I was exposed to what was a few hours later confirmed to be influenza A.  This, I determined, was a situation worthy of skipping both my biologic and mtx.  My doctor determined that it was also worthy of a round of tamiflu.  With known exposure, tamiflu can be used to prevent the flu — or at the very least, make the case less severe than it would otherwise have been.  I had not known that Tamiflu could be used prophylactically.

If you are exposed to a confirmed case of the flu, there’s no need to spend any time worrying about whether or not you’ll get sick.  Talk to your doctor.

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How Flu Spreads
Tamiflu

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5 thoughts on “Tamiflu

  1. I’m so glad to hear that your doctor is so proactive! I’ve done some reading that tamiflu is somewhat less effective than claimed (the drug manufacturer didn’t release less successful trials) but it certainly has some effectiveness. I’m with you – as on the flu vaccine – 60% is WAY better than none. In the elderly and persons with suppressed immune systems (us) it is considerably less; as little as 9% in the elderly this year. Why would anyone who has the flu and knows that they have the flu knowingly expose others? That’s just wrong.

    • My doctor is pretty awesome :)

      My experience with Tamiflu has been good. I take it with dinner because 1) taking it with food can prevent upset stomach, and 2) it can cause sleepiness in some people. The only downside was the copay, because it’s tier 2 – looking forward to that one going generic!

  2. I get furious when people knowingly show up to work or functions when they are sick. Sneezing, coughing, feverish – stay home! I refuse to shake hands during cold and flu season. Some people think I am rude but I don’t care. If it means I stay well, I can hurt some feelings. Thanks for the Tamiflu information.

    • I carry hand sanitizer – and use it. It’s not rude to avoid germs.
      My husband is one of those people who go to work sick. He says that since he got the germs from people at work, he’s not exposing coworkers to anything new. I tell him that if he goes to work sick, it means his employees think that they have to work when they’re sick, which is how it spreads. If everyone felt free to stay home and recover, it wouldn’t spread through the entire office like it does now. It drives me crazy. Our compromise was that a few years ago he started getting an annual flu shot, and that’s solved the problem. I agree with you. People who are sick should stay home.

  3. I hope that Tamifl keeps you from getting the flu. After years with RA when I do get sick (not too often TG) it is worse than it used to be. Finally experienced chills 2 years ago

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