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Influenza A Vaccine and the Incidence of Otitis Media-Reply

Dennis A. Clements, MD, PhD
Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1996;150(6):653. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1996.02170310087025.
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Titles can be misleading, but the text is not. Reading the "Objective" and "Conclusion" in the abstract at the beginning of the article,1 and the "Conclusions" section at the end of the article, makes it very clear that we feel that the data we report are consistent with their being a reduction in the number of otitis episodes in influenza-vaccinated children during the influenza season, in particular when the circulating wild influenza strain was the same as in the vaccine.

Dr Aligne's point about their being an equal number of cases for the whole winter misses, in my mind, the main epidemiologic point, ie, that the influenza-vaccinated group had fewer episodes of otitis during the influenza period compared with the non–influenza-vaccinated group. This was in spite of the fact that the influenza-vaccinated children could be considered to be more otitis prone, having had an increased number of past episodes

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