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Flu Guide

Alison Beaver

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ask: Is it normal for my arm muscle in my shoulder to hurt 2 weeks after flu shot?

By Free2Bme
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I was happy to receive the flu shot this year, as I feel like it's "doing my part" to stop the spread of the influenza virus. Plus, any inoculation that can either prevent, or lessen the symptoms, of flu is motivation to me!

I've received the flu shot annually, for the past 10 years. I have the typical soreness at site, possibly a little tired that evening. But that's it.

This year...my shoulder muscle (at the site of the injection) is still painful, so much that I can't move my arm forward at shoulder-level, or lift my arm up over my head, without a sharp pain in that one muscle. If my arm is still, it does not hurt. It is affecting my sleep, as I am confined to sleeping on only my right side (it is my left arm that hurts).

Are there any other reports of this flu shot symptom? Did I just not move my arm enough after the shot (kind of "favored it"), or is there something else wrong??

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EmpowHER Guest

Got a flu shot two weeks ago. As many others have noted, I believed that the shot seemed to be pretty high up on my arm, really more in the shoulder area. For a few days after the shot, I just thought the arm and shoulder pain was something expected. Then it dragged on for a week, then ten days, then got worse to the point where I could not raise my arm above chest high level without causing extreme pain. There was a definite tender spot on the corner of my shoulder, from which the pain radiated on certain movements. Trying to get dressed became a real adventure, particularly attempting to put anything on over my head. Went back to the doctor and was diagnosed with supraspinatus tenosynovitis. I am being put on a steroid and will start PT next week to prevent ending up with a frozen shoulder. What a miserable result for just trying to avoid the flu.

October 30, 2014 - 8:50am
EmpowHER Guest

I had my injection 8 days ago and can only describe symptoms as arthritic, pulsating pain in my hands, and then in both upper arms. It's driving me crazy!! I work for the NHS and thought I was doing the right thing...never ever again!

October 30, 2014 - 8:34am
EmpowHER Guest

I got my flu shot last week and am still having pain in my left arm. I can move it fine but when I use my arm muscles or lay on my left arm it hurts really bad. My coworkers got the shot at the same time so I asked today if anyone else was still having pain and they weren't. Which is why I googled it and came across this. Never have I had pain after a flu shot for this long. I heard on the news they added a 4th virus to the flu shot this year. Maybe that's the cause?

October 28, 2014 - 5:35pm
EmpowHER Guest

I had my flu shot this morning. I didn't feel the needle go in, but I did feel the injection of the vaccine. My arm hurt immediately and hasn't stopped. It's been 3.5 hours. The pain radiates all the way down to my fingers. I've been on google, and basically this is so common there's a name for it. SIRVA: Shoulder Injury Related to Vaccination Administration. What happens is if the needle is too high on your shoulder, it can hit a bursa sac instead of your muscle. If you've been having pain for a while, and your doctor doesn't believe you. Research the injury. You might need an MRI, and you can also file a claim under the Vaccine Adverse Reaction Event. I don't write this to worry anyone, it's more to let you know you're not crazy. I'm praying this is just an anomaly for me, but if not, I'm going to my doctor armed with information. Good luck!

October 28, 2014 - 11:30am
EmpowHER Guest

I got my flu shot at a grocery store pharmacy on October 17th. I heard a sound when the needle was inserted and was shocked to find the bandage placed high on my shoulder that evening. The pain started that evening and at first I attributed it to normal flu shot pain. However, the pain is still intense awaking me at night, and absolutely excruciatingly painful and stiff upon awakening. I have a limited range of motion in that arm now. Putting on a jacket is very painful.

October 27, 2014 - 12:11pm
EmpowHER Guest

I also had my flu shot about 3 days ago and my arm hurts so bad still that I have been unable to sleep at night. Have had then before and have never had this problem. Wondering if it was worth it this year!

October 27, 2014 - 3:34am
EmpowHER Guest

I've heard of many people not getting the flu shot because of how sick it makes them. This is not the case for me. I've been getting annual flu shots for the past 7 years and every time I'm left with horrible pain in my arm for weeks. I guess different people have different reactions. I'm so surprised to find all of you with the same issue as I am sitting here with this pain my arm from a shot two days ago. I am sure that next year I will be in this same situation.

October 26, 2014 - 2:04pm
EmpowHER Guest

I'm having the a horrible pain in shoulder and arm 8 days after flu shot. I'm surprised a lot of people are experiencing this too. I felt warming in my arm as it was administered and it got worse. With past shots I forget about them later that day, not this one.....when will it get better and why is it so painful this year?

October 25, 2014 - 5:43pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

I wish I knew why it was so painful! It's horrible! I've been suffering for almost 6 weeks now! I've been to the doctor three times and still don't have any answers! I'm waiting on a referral to a neurologist to see if I have nerve damage now. I feel silly, but I know this isn't normal!

October 25, 2014 - 7:15pm
EmpowHER Guest

It's been two days since my shot and my shoulder is killing me. It's really hard to move my arm and I couldn't hardly sleep last night.

October 24, 2014 - 7:36pm
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