Hospitalizations for heart failure rose in months with more flu activity, reports the Star Tribune.
Research led by a Minneapolis pharmacist has found a link between flu and heart failure hospitalizations, building the case for more adults getting their flu shots.
Studying influenza seasons between 2010 and 2014, the group of researchers found that heart failure-related hospitalizations rose by 24% in those months when clinics reported 5% bumps in flu activity.
The study is one of the first to establish an association between influenza and heart failure — though prior research has shown more heart attacks in severe flu seasons, said Orly Vardeny, a pharmacist with the University of Minnesota and the Minneapolis Veterans Medical Center.
“The purpose really is to strengthen the rationale for people getting vaccinated, especially people who are vulnerable, like those with heart disease,” she said.