Getting the flu is not fun and flu shots are recommended by the CDC each year for that year’s specific flu strains.

New research is giving some hope to those who may be at higher risk of a stroke by getting the flu shot and here’s why; respiratory infections increase the risk of stroke in the days following infection in some people.

“…flu vaccination might lower the chances of stroke among adults, especially people under 45,” according to Dr. Gyanendra Kumar, a Mayo Clinic neurologist not involved in the study.

“Some of these are increased hypercoagulable state, a transient period where you have a greater predisposition to form clots,” says Dr. Kumar.

When clots form, they can block blood flow to the brain and could cause a stroke or brain damage.

So, there is another potential benefit of getting the yearly flu shot; preventing a stroke in those who are susceptible.