The last time I got a flu shot, I ended up having mild flu symptoms.
I do know that Dr. Charles Lapp - director of the Hunter-Hopkins Center for ME/CFS/FM in Charlotte, NC - says that as a general rule he does not recommend flu shots for his patients. He claims that there are ME/CFS/FM patients who relapse after getting flu shots and many of them do not even develop antibodies to the vaccination.
The article also says you have to weigh the risks. Do you travel a lot ? Do you work in the medical field or in a school ? If you do, obviously your chances of catching the flu would be higher.
So it is quite risky and I think once again, I will choose not to get the flu shot. The last time my PCP asked me to get a flu shot, he spent at least a few minutes trying to convince me that I needed one. After I kept saying no, I finally turned around and asked him if he was going to get the flu shot ? He paused... then smiled and shook his head... NO !
She says she does, but it's hard to tell....she dosn't do to much has lot of pain.The only interaction she may get with people infected w/flu is family at christmas...thats the most people at a time.She is 72.
She is concerned y I don't get the shot- I haven't had the flu in yrs-aleaast 20yrs and don't think I need it. I've also seen others that got it anad were sick with the flu several times that season!
It is a very difficult decision... I guess especially for elderly people. IMO, one should weigh the risk vs. benefit.
I know that I don't tolerate vaccinations well, especially now that my CFS is worse. I also don't tolerate surgery well and have since read that this is common with CFS & fibromyalgia patients.
There is an autoimmune condition called Guillain Barre Syndrome that can occur after either getting a flu shot or getting the flu. I figure since I'm so susceptible to everything... that is yet another reason why I'm not getting the flu shot again this year. I already have autoimmune issues anyway ! ; ^)
So that is why I'm skipping out again this year on getting a flu shot. I think too many vaccinations to begin with isn't good.
Dr. David Bell's thoughts on getting the flu shot (for FM/CFS patients). Since we have immune dysfunction.... some of us may get worse with the flu shot. This may or may not be the case with all FM/CFS patients... but definitely information that I think should be discussed with your physician.
Q&A Session with FM/ME/CFS physician David S. Bell, MD - November 2, 2007
Q: Should we get the flu shot?
Dr. Bell: Everyone you ask this question to will give you a different answer. The flu shot will act as an antigenic stimulus and thus can worsen symptoms. But getting the flu would be worse. In general I avoid it in my more seriously ill patients.
One of my questions for Dr. Nicholson is what his thoughts are on this ? I know the majority of CFS/FM experts do know that patients with immune dysfunction sometimes get worse after having a flu shot. I know many CFS patients can't even tolerate many medications. I can't tolerate allergy shots... they make me very ill.
I haven't had any adverse reactions to flu shots, and I stay healthier when I do get one. I grew up in a home that was heated with a coal furnace. I was 3 months old the first time I got bronchitis and got bronchitis at least twice a year after that until my parents converted to natural gas when I was 15. My lungs are pretty scarred as a result of all those infections and any cold or flu I get is usually accompanied by bronchitis as a secondary infection. Even last year's shot, which was said not to cover the infections that were going around, kept me healthier through the winter, so until it stops protecting me, I'll keep getting flu shots.
If you are able to tolerate the flu shot... that is great. I might get the flu shots if I were able to tolerate them.
What Adrienne Dellwo wrote on her website
(http://chronicfatigue.about.com/b/2007/11/11/flu-shots-what-fm-and-mecfs-patients-should-know.htm) is that many (CFS/ME/FM patients) do not even develop antibodies to the vaccination and therefore don't develop immunity to the flu !! I may e-mail her and find out if she can give me a link to the actual research study.
This is a tough decision for me and one that I researched last year and am reviewing again.
I have never got the flu shot. Before my husband and I were married (27 yrs. ago) he got the flu shot. He had never had the flu, but that year he got the flu 4Xs that winter. I also read were some people get Gullian-Barr as a result of getting the flu vaccine.
I just take lots of vit C, zinc and put hydrogen peroxide in my ears. You can find info on this consept at www.mercola.com
You know I really found it fascinating that Amish people have not reported any cases of autism. Of course the Amish do not believe in vaccinations. Another study done in New Zealand found that people in the country do not have nearly as many allergy and asthma problems that Americans do. Of course the people in New Zealand don't get as many vaccinations as Americans do. I think we really need to look at this because there is something very wrong when 81% of people in America are taking at least one prescription medication and that now new estimates say that 1 in 100 people have autism. Not to mention the increasing number of people who have ALS (which used to be a rare disease) and other illnesses such as Alzheimers.
I've increased my vitamin C supplements and have eliminated sugar (completely) from my diet. And I'm taking other precautions as well. I'll definitely check out Mercola's link... I actually subscribe to his newsletter now. It is physicians like him who are the ones responsible for getting me well and who didn't say, "I dont' believe in CFS". ; ^ )
I have gotten the flu vaccine the last couple of years. I have not had any trouble with it, nor have I gotten the flu. My mother-inlaw has end stage COPD and I feel that it is my responsibility to protect her.
I know that if you are allergic to chicken/egg that you can have trouble with vaccines.
If getting the flu vaccine increases the dx symptoms, what would actually getting the flu do to that process?
And if getting the vaccine doesn't produce antibodies in some, then why would they have effects on their symptoms?
Just some personal experience with vaccine and couple of questions.
You are lucky. I cannot even tolerate allergy injections and my allergy testing that I had done revealed that I'm not allergic to eggs.
This is a link to my post about my hx with vaccinations: http://www.medhelp.org/posts/Autoimmune-Disorders/Swine-Flu-Concerns/show/1024327
The problem is many CFS and fibro patients have relapsed after vaccinations. Of course if we get the flu, we risk relapse as well or worse. So we have to weigh the risks and every situation is different.
You ask some very good questions. I honestly wish I knew why some people, including myself, cannot tolerate some vaccinations. I have read on Dr. Mercola's website that according to the CDC, the majority of flu vaccines contain thimerosal. Some contain as much as 25 mcg of mercury per dose. This means that it may contain more than 250 times the Environmental Protection Agency’s safety limit for mercury.
I just received the flu mist yesterday. It was the new one that has all three strains in it including the H1N1. I was home today because my pain level was so bad, along with a very bad headache and sore throat. I have fibromyalgia. I have taken the shot for 3 years now and each time I have had a relapse after, but never this much pain. I'm not going to take the shot anymore. I do clerical in a health clinic, but I'm willing to take my chances, I'd rather do that than suffer the pain. I suffer enough without knowlingly doing something that will cause more pain. So as for me, no more flu shots or mist.
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