Influenza Vaccines for Preventing Acute Otitis Media in Infants and Children
Description of Resource:
Acute otitis media (AOM) is one of the most common infectious diseases in infants and preschoolers. Symptoms include ear pain and fever, but it may also cause hearing loss due to eardrum perforation or fluid accumulation in the middle ear. AOM is often preceded by viral infection, such as influenza. Preventing viral infections might prevent AOM. This systematic review investigated whether influenza vaccines might reduce the occurrence of AOM in infants and children. Eleven randomized controlled trials comparing influenza vaccine with placebo or no treatment in infants and children ages 6 months to 6 years, with or without a history of previous episodes of AOM, were identified. Ten out of 11 trials were funded by vaccine manufacturers. This review found a 4% reduction in AOM and about an 11% reduction in the number of antibiotic prescriptions.