Immune response to influenza vaccination of elderly people. A randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial

Vaccine. 1994 Oct;12(13):1185-9. doi: 10.1016/0264-410x(94)90241-0.


The objective of this study was to determine the immune response to influenza vaccination in elderly people, using a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Venous blood was taken from 1838 people aged 60 years and older, prior to injection with the influenza vaccine or a placebo. A second blood sample was taken three weeks later. The antibody reaction was measured by comparing the geometric mean titre and the percentage of participants who had a protective antibody titre before and after vaccination and for all sera of each strain. A protective antibody titre was found in 43-68% of those who had received the vaccine, depending on the strain investigated. Patients potentially at risk showed a response similar to the other participants. We conclude that influenza vaccination in elderly people provides a reasonable to good immune response. Research is needed on whether a good immune response decreases the incidence of influenza.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antibodies, Viral / biosynthesis*
  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Influenza A virus / immunology
  • Influenza B virus / immunology
  • Influenza Vaccines / immunology*
  • Influenza, Human / prevention & control
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Orthomyxoviridae / immunology
  • Risk Factors


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Influenza Vaccines