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pain in shoulder following flu shot 2012
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concernedsparky posted:
I finally found a thread on a website with people who are suffering from the same situation of having related inflammation in the corresponding arm following having a flu shot. I have had for 8 wks following my flu shot of rt upper arm, inflammed bursa, radiating pain down left arm, back of shoulder and is about an 8 as far as pain is concerned. I have been to my primary doc re: the pain. Given NSAID's. Helped a little. Sleeping or laying down is VERY painful. I am thus sleeping upright, trying not to lay on inflammed lt shoulder. I should also mention that I have a ticklish/numb feeling down my arm. I cannot even wear a bra, it hurts so bad. After contacting my doc again, she referred me to physical therapy. They gave me an exercise to do and a cervical collar to wear for my neck as well as directions to ice the shoulder. I was quite honest with the PT about the sudden onset of the above mentioned as I didn't injure myself, fall, etc. It came on directly following the flu injection. I spoke to an accupuncturist who said that they might have hit a spot in the arm that 'froze' the point that he would have used a needle to treat inflammed shoulder. In other words, a nerve was hit with the needle of the injection. Now, I wear a cervical collar to lift my neck up and keep any further strain on my shoulder. Am on NSAIDS for the last 8 wks. They wanted to give me Vicodin, but I declined as I am 21 yrs recovered alchoholc. Also, given Robaxin, a muscle relaxant. And being ref. to an accupuncturist & visit with an orthopedic md.

I wanted to post all this as I have been stumped as to the cause of this painful inflammed condition that appeared directly following the flu shot. If I can be of help to others who are suffering the same kind of symptoms, that are being told that it can't possibly be the flu shot itself that caused this. I have done even more research into the chemicals that are in the flu shot. I have to wonder if they have been any part in this as some of what I read are pretty powerful chemical agents injected into one's system.

I'm REALLY grateful for all who have posted on this thread as it made me feel heard and not alone. I have various medical conditions that I dealt with for years. Western medicine has not always had the answers, quite honestly, so I have ventured into holistic means, researching all I can get my hands on to alternative medicine. I will
continue to post any more info and update on this most frustrating condition. All I was trying to do was something preventative as I cannot afford to get the flu and here I am dealing with the consequences. In constant pain, meds to treat, PT, and now accupuncture. My hope is that there will be some healing and answers SOON!
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Rod Moser, PA, PhD responded:
I would vote for you to see a neurologist, not the orthopedist. Based on the information you have posted, you may have a radial nerve injury (since the pain radiates to your thumb area).

Yes, the flu vaccine AND the needle most likely caused the sudden onset of your symptoms. If a branch of the radial nerve or the nerve itself was damaged, you have a very good chance to healing over time....but there is absolutely no way to predict outcome at this point. You can do all of the alternative or holistic things you want, but healing is an individual process and is unlikely to be influenced, enhanced, or expedited by any therapeutic interventions in this arena. If you get bettter, you will most likely attribute the LAST thing you did, but sadly, that does not prove the LAST intervention was the magic bullet. Just because Western Medicine can't cure "everything", neither can all of those unproven, non-traditional methods. You do have the right to choose however, but do so wisely.

The flu vaccine is NOT laced with powerful chemical agents, no matter what biased information you read on the Internet from those anti-vaccine zealots. Hundreds of millions of vaccines are safely administerd every year, but just like a lightning strike, these things can happen.....and, it happened to you. It would be nice if you won the lottery instead, but think of these adverse events as the reverse lottery. I am so sorry this happened to you, but don't attribute blame soley to the intervention, but rather the statistical event that sometimes, crap happens.

True. You are not alone. Many people have posted on this site about adverse injection events. The hundreds of millions of people that did not have a problem are not posting. They have no reason to do so.

Next year if you want a flu vaccine, consider Flu Mist (sprays in your nose) or the new micro-injection system that only goes in your skin...about as deep as a mosquito bite. There is no way for this new injection system to hit a nerve.
 
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Rod Moser, PA, PhD replied to Rod Moser, PA, PhD's response:
One more resource from my own "biased" opinion....

http://blogs.webmd.com/all-ears/

Sorry if this is a duplicate comment. My computer isn't perfect either!
 
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momeick responded:
I don't have any answers but I do have the same problem. I received a flu shot two weeks ago and the pain is gradually getting worse. I can't lift my arm above my head to take my shirt off, and I'm beginning to have trouble sleeping at night. I sure wish I'd known this was a possible side effect. I'd have gone with the flu mist. Never had a reaction like this before, but needle was inserted higher and farther back than usual. After reading posts, I just took an Aleve. I really hope it helps.
 
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trobin responded:
It's 4am and I'm up with extreme arm pain. I recieved the flu shot 2 weeks ago. The shot was given higher than I'm used to. The pain is getting worse everyday, as well as range of motion. Can't lay on my right side and can barely put a tee shirt on. Not sure what to do.
 
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Rod Moser, PA, PhD replied to trobin's response:
The only thing you can do is to see your primary care medical provider so that you can have your arm properly examined. In the meantime, taking an anti-inflammatory medicine would be helpful.
 
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Borovik replied to Rod Moser, PA, PhD's response:
I got the flu shot in my right arm, upon the nurse's insistence since I'm right-handed. This was 2 weeks ago, Oct. 31, 2012. I had so much pain the first night, unable to move covers, remove a shirt. It went away a bit, but is now getting worst. Still difficult to remove a shirt. What did she do to me? My shoulder hurts so much. How will I be able to ski this winter?
 
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spyrogirl replied to momeick's response:
Wow! Am I glad that I found this website as I received my flu shot a week ago, and like you, I also received my shot higher on my shoulder and 2 days later I started with this pain in my shoulder and a popping noise at times when I move my shoulder. Sometimes the pain is sharp and stabbing. I'm going to my doctor this week and am going to mention this to him. I'll re-post if I find out more and to add any treatments, etc that he gives to me...I thought I was going crazy but I now know that others had this same problem.
 
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An_249317 replied to momeick's response:
I just had the same thing happen to me as well after having my flu shot on November 4th. The injection itself hurt, more than a normal shot would, and it was much higher up my arm - near my shoulder. By the time I saw how high the technician was putting the needle in, it was too late and I didn't say anything.
My arm was achy for about a week or so, but I didn't worry about it. Then, after about 14-16 days after the shot I suddenly had excruciating pain anytime I tried to life my arm higher than my chest. I could not cross my arm over my chest, or raise it up at all. I could not remove my shirt without wanting to scream in pain, and couldn't pull my pants up comfortably either. I have NEVER had any type of shoulder pain before this. I was waking up in the middle of the night almost paralyzed on my right side with pain.

Ibuprofin helped but not enough. I saw my primary care doc after 3 weeks of this nightmare. He referred me to an Ortho right away. They both told me that this is not too common, but all the inflammation in the shoulder was probably caused by the needle being too high up & it got into the area near the Rotator Cuff, which is causing the range of motion problems...long story short I'm on a Steroid pack for 6 days and they expect a normal recovery, I will follow up in 6 weeks if I don't make satisfactory improvements. It is already feeling better (thankfully) and I can at least get dressed & function without tremendous pain, although not 100% better.

I have seen on some sites that the CDC wants to know when injections are not administered correctly - they track that and I intend to report it all. I'd like to sue the pharmacy too for being negligent and hurting me when I was trying to do something good for my health!
 
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BlueJayAlum replied to An_249317's response:
I Forgot to include this in my post - here's what this condition is called:

Shoulder injury related to vaccine administration (SIRVA)
 
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Aru88 replied to Borovik's response:
I got the flu shot the week before Thanksgiving (almost 4 weeks now) and the soreness in my left arm at the point of injection persists. It becomes worse when I am more active during the day, but I'm not sure why it aches so much. If anyone has seen a doctor about this, please let me know. I'm not one to be concerned, but it is rather alarming that an vaccination could cause so much discomfort. It prevents me from moving my arm above my head at times (sporadically it is worse).
 
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fitnessnut responded:
Same issue here. Flu shot on Nov 28. I've had many shots over the years, but never pain like this. Arm really hurt right away. The pain has come and gone several times since, but was terrible over the holidays. It is the worst at night. It just aches all night long and trying to get a shirt off bends me over with pain. I'm a pretty tough cookie most of the time, but this is a bit much. I'm still working out, but it's definitely impacting my strength and form. Doing shoulder presses this morning was miserable. I was fine as long as I didn't fully extend my arm. It's so strange because just a few days ago, the pain was gone. It's very inconsistant and it seems like it's very specific movements that cause the pain to flare up. Anything over the head with my arm slightly crossing my body is a real problem. Nothing that i've taken has taken the edge off at night. I will post progress. I have yet to see anyone post that they are better, which is a bit worrisome to me. Thanks to everyone for posting. I was starting to wonder if I actually had an injury from working out, but everything i'm experiencing is very similar to the other posts here. Off to see my doc tomorrow.
 
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jm222 replied to Rod Moser, PA, PhD's response:
Hi, I've read these posts but my 3 1/2 yr old son had the flu mist and got the same pain discussed on this thread. We have seen numerous doctors including rhematologist, pediatric, sports, got an MRI and xrays with 2 blood panels -- all came back negative.

We're left to believe we need to see a neurologist as you mentioned, but we're confused since my son got the flu mist and not the shot. Is this nerve pain still possible?

He had a cold and Hand-Foot-Mouth disease back to back around the same time, but his arm pain started immediately after the flu mist.

At first he couldn't lift his arm, now he can't do a bicep curl so he leaves it completely limp. It's been 2 months now and so frustrating. Any help or advice would be much appreciated!

Thanks.
 
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Rod Moser, PA, PhD replied to jm222's response:
I don't believe that there is a known causative link between FluMist and the symptoms that your son is experiencing. In the past, albeit rarely, the flu vaccine has been linked to Guillain-Barre syndome - a progressive neurological disorder -- but your son is not experiencing any common or classic symptoms of this disorder. Hand, foot, and mouth disease should not be implicated.

Your son has seen many specialists, so getting a neurologists opinion would be advisable. My heart really goes out to him, but I am at a loss to be able to help pinpoint the reason for his condition.
 
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debby2210 responded:
I also had a flu shot that felt unusual when she gave it to me. I had this shot 8 weeks ago and the pain in my arm is intense and very uncomfortable. Have my first dr. appt. this week but am starting with a general doctor. Have found your web site very informative as I thought I was crazy. Even tried to remember if I had fallen because I thought maybe it was a rotator cuff. I am a very active person and this has been most uncomfortable and debilitating.


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