Mission: To save lives and reduce hospitalizations by protecting children, families, and communities against influenza.
Insights on Influenza
  • Flu Vaccine Information

FAQs: Are There Different Types of Flu Vaccines?

Posted on February 23, 2021
Share this article:

As we hear about several COVID-19 vaccinations becoming available from different companies, it has brought to light more questions about flu vaccines. In this post, we’ll answer common questions about the flu shot from our Facebook and Twitter communities.

Are there different types of flu vaccines?

Yes, there are different kinds of flu vaccines approved by the FDA.  Flu vaccines are made with different production technologies and some are approved for different age groups. Each vaccine must go through in-depth research and clinical trials to ensure it meets strict safety and effectiveness requirements. Vaccine technology may be egg-based, cell-based or recombinant (genetically engineered).

What is trivalent and quadrivalent flu shot?

A trivalent vaccine protects against three different influenza viruses, while a quadrivalent vaccine protects against four different flu viruses. Trivalent vaccines protect against two types of influenza A and one type of influenza B. Right now, the only trivalent flu vaccine available is for adults age 65+. Quadrivalent vaccines protect against two types of influenza A and two types of B. The most used vaccine today is the quadrivalent.

Different vaccines are approved for different age groups. There is no preference between the different types of flu vaccines. The most important thing is to get a flu vaccination every year. Speak with your trusted healthcare professional if you have questions about which vaccine is right for you.

What kind of vaccine is the flu shot? Can the flu vaccine make flu worse?

The flu vaccine contains dead (inactivated) or weakened (attenuated) viruses, or no flu virus at all. The vaccine works by causing your body to create antibodies, basically teaching your body how to fight off the flu. To cause actual infection, viruses need to reproduce, or make copies of themselves. Flu vaccines, no matter how they are made, do not contain viruses that can reproduce and make you sick with the flu. If you experience mild side effects following vaccination such as muscle aches or fatigue, that’s a sign that your body is building up an immune response, which is what it’s supposed to do!


Check out our FAQs on the flu vaccine for more info!

You might also be interested in...

Spot the Fake: Identifying and Comparing Good vs Bad Articles
History of Vaccines: How and Why Do Vaccines Work
Why Vaccinating Kids Matters for Their Health and the Community
Stay Informed
Sign up for our Weekly Flu News and quarterly newsletter, Fighting Influenza, to stay up-to-date on the latest flu news.


You are required to accept all of the terms and conditions in this License Agreement in order to receive a limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable, non-assignable, royalty-free license to use the FAMILIES FIGHTING FLU, INC. logo, displayed below (the “FFF Logo”), from Families Fighting Flu, Inc. (“FFF”). In order to accept these terms and conditions, you must click the “I Accept” button below.

  1. FFF hereby grants to you, and you accept, a limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable, non-assignable, royalty-free license to use the FFF Logo, which you may download and use solely in online and print earned media publications for a period of no more than six (6) months in the United States.
  2. You acknowledge that the FFF Logo is a valid trademark; that FFF is the sole owner of the FFF Logo; and that FFF retains all right, title, and interest in and to the FFF Logo. You agree that any and all use that you make of the FFF Logo, and any and all goodwill arising from your use of the FFF Logo, shall inure exclusively to the benefit of FFF.  You also agree that you shall not challenge the validity of the FFF Logo or FFF’s ownership or title thereto during the term of the License Agreement or thereafter.
  3. You agree that you shall use the FFF Logo only in the form shown above, and that you shall not alter, modify, change, or edit the FFF Logo in any manner.
  4. You acknowledge the valuable goodwill and reputation in the FFF Logo, and that it is essential that the high standards and reputation associated with the FFF Logo be maintained. You therefore agree to use the FFF Logo consistent with the highest standards of quality so as to protect and maintain the FFF Logo and FFF’s rights therein.
  5. FFF shall have the right to review and inspect your use of the FFF Logo at any time. FFF, in its sole discretion, may determine that you are not using the FFF Logo in an acceptable manner and require that you discontinue your use of the FFF Logo.  To the extent that FFF requires that you discontinue your use of the FFF Logo, you agree that you shall remove the FFF Logo from all online and print earned media publications as soon as practicable under the circumstances, and that you shall not use the FFF at any time in the future.
  6. You must include the following notice in connection with any use of the FFF Logo: “The Families Fighting Flu, Inc. logo is the registered trademark of Families Fighting Flu, Inc.”
I Accept