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Format: 04/20/2014
Format: 04/20/2014


WPXI-TV: Local doctors' offices flooded with swine flu calls

Thursday, September 3rd, 2009

It's now seasonal flu shot season but people going in for those vaccines are seeing their doctors with questions about the swine flu vaccine – wondering if it is safe?

Allegheny General Hospital doctor Marc Itskowitz said patients are starting to ask the tough questions. "Some of our patients are concerned about possible side effects because the vaccine is being developed pretty quickly," said Itskowitz.

During the swine flu scare in the mid 1970's the widespread vaccination was thought, by some, to bring on guillain barre syndrome -- a sometimes life threatening disease which can temporarily paralyze the central nervous system. There was never a scientifically proven link but many people remember.

"I'm telling them to stay tuned, we need to get more information -- its being studied right now – there are five clinical trials that were started in July. We'll probably have more info in about two to three weeks,” said Itskowitz.

Doctors say what makes this swine flu pandemic different from the one in 1976 is who it is affecting.

To read more, visit the WPXI-TV web site.

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