A-Z List of Chemicals in Flu Vaccine – Substances and Ingredients

Flu Vaccine contains numerous chemicals ingredients in very small quantities in pharmacy Industry. They often include a deactivated flu virus. Each of the ingredients works together to ensure that the vaccine is safe and effective. Influenza viruses are always changing and developing. Therefore, so does the flu vaccine. Many have similar ingredients, including a small amount of the virus or bacteria being vaccinated against.

List of Chemicals in Flu Vaccine

 If you read the ingredient list of an average flu vaccine, you may notice words like formaldehyde, Polysorbate 80, and thimerosal. Some of these ingredients have made news in recent years due to concerns of health risks. Millions of people have gotten the flu vaccine. Very few of them have had any serious issues. Research overwhelmingly that the flu vaccine and the chemicals in it to be safe. Here’s a rundown of the chemicals you will find in a flu vaccine.

  1. Formaldehyde

This substance among the List of Chemicals used in Embalming is also an important substance in the flu vaccine. It is very toxic and potentially lethal in high doses. However, the small amounts of this substance create more harmless in a flu vaccination than danger. Its role in the flu shot is to inactivate toxins from viruses and bacteria that may contaminate the vaccine during production, therefore, the viruses also naturally present in the vaccine. This substance is among the many Chemical Element Human Body and is a product of healthy digestive function.

  1. Polysorbate 80

The list of chemicals in flu vaccine – This emulsifier chemical prevents sauces and salad dressings from separating. In flu vaccines, it keeps all the ingredients evenly distributed in the body. Therefore, large doses in a vaccine can cause some people to have allergic reactions. However, the amount of this substance in the flu vaccine is extremely small.

  1. Aluminum Salts

This substance is a veteran ingredient in vaccines for years. Aluminum salts are adjuvants element that they help the body to develop a stronger immune system response against the virus in the vaccine. Therefore, because they boost the body’s response, this means also that the vaccine can contain smaller amounts of the virus.

Similar to formaldehyde and other ingredients in the flu shot, the amount present in the vaccine is extremely small. This is not a primary substance in the flu vaccine, and not always present in flu vaccines. Moreover, some flu vaccine even aluminum-free.

  1. Thimerosal

The compound which is among the List of Food Preservative also act to keeps the vaccine free from bacteria and fungi contamination. Therefore, without this substance, the growth of bacteria and fungi is common when a syringe is in a multi-dose vial (a vial that contains more than one dose). Thimerosal comes from an organic form of mercury known as ethylmercury. It is a safe compound that only stays in the blood for a few days. It differs from other mercury that can cause illness in large doses, this substance is quite safe.

Flu vaccine will only contain thimerosal in a multi-dose vial. Their typical single-dose vials, pre-filled syringes vaccine do not need to include this preservative because contamination is not an issue. 

  1. Chicken egg proteins

Proteins from chicken eggs help viruses to grow before they made it into the vaccine. Viruses in vaccines are usually grown inside fertilized chicken eggs where it makes copies of itself. Afterward, the scientist separates virus from the egg and place it into the vaccine.

Therefore, the finished form of the vaccine may contain small amounts of egg proteins. The flu vaccine is typically safe for people with egg allergies. However, before every shot, it is best to mention the allergy to the doctor before receiving the shot. A person with a severe egg allergy may require intensive monitoring by a doctor after the injection.

  1. Gelatin

Gelatin act as a stabilizer in the flu vaccine. It keeps the vaccine effective from production to the moment of usage. Therefore, stabilizers also help to protect from damaging effects of heat or freeze-drying. The gelation in common flu vaccines usually come from pork-based gelatin. This pose controversy for the non-pork consumer to have flu vaccines or other vaccines in their lives.

  1. Antibiotics

The chemical substance presents in the flu vaccine to keep bacteria from growing during the production and storage of the vaccine. If it does not contain antibiotics that the vaccine may cause severe reactions, such as penicillin. Types of antibiotic exist in vaccines contain either gentamicin or neomycin. Both ingredients has a topical medications type such as lotions, ointments, and eye drops.  

  1. MF59 (squalene oil)

MF59 is a common flu vaccine in the UK. Among the long list of List of Prohibited and Restricted Cosmetic Ingredient in the UK, there are also chemicals that were banned in other countries but not the UK. Other vaccines in other countries may not use this chemical, but it is considered safe in the UK.

This chemical comes into the Fluad vaccine is not a new vaccine. MF59 in the vaccine makes it more effective. It is an adjuvant substance which helps to strengthen and lengthen the immune response to the vaccine. It also may lead to an increase in common side effects such as pain, swelling or redness at the injection site, slightly high temperature, headache, feeling generally unwell, shivering, or tiredness.

The main ingredient in MF59 is squalene oil, a natural substance in humans, plants, and animals. Therefore, so people are quite confident of the safety using this chemical.

  1. Sorbitan Trioleate

Emulsifiers in any vaccine which often as a combination for squalene oil from separating out from the water in the vaccine. It is a chemical compound made from oleic acid (a natural fatty acid) and sorbitol, another natural substance in fruits and other foods. Therefore, it is considered a safe chemical with natural based ingredients.

  1. Sorbitol

The natural substance in the human body also exists in fruit and berries. It is a typical substance that can be harmful in large amount. Moreover, Sorbitol is among the List of Artificial Sweeteners you should Avoid in foods and drinks. In vaccines, small quantities of Sorbitol act as a stabilizer. Sorbitol may also be present in one of the chickenpox vaccines in a small dose and very harmless. However, in some rare case, there are people with an allergy to sorbitol.

The key ingredient in all vaccines is there are more than one active chemical ingredients. Apart from this, the main ingredient in vaccines is the bacteria itself that they try to fight against. Most injected vaccines contain 0.milliliterses of liquid which means almost every chemical in it come in a small dose and just contains a few drops. Unlike food additive, the list of flu vaccine chemicals may include products used during the manufacturing process, even if they do not remain in the finished product.