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Pain in arm after flu shot

By September 16, 2009 - 8:00pm
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I had a flu shot Sept. 2008 and remember it hurt when given. Since then I have pain in my upper arm and shoulder (it's now been a year). I believe it is nerve damage from the needle going to deep. I have had an MRI. meds and now going to Chiro with no relief. I cant't put my arm behind my back or lift it over my head and forget about putting weight on it. Does anyone know of relief for this condition?


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My post disappeared, unless there is more than 1 thread on this topic. I want to share that 2 months of Physical Therapy really eased the frozen shoulder pain that developed from the flu shot, which I received a year ago, August 2010.

For months I couldn't sleep on that shoulder, I couldn't raise my arm beyond a certain point, and then I couldn't hook my bra in back. It was going on 7 months before I finally went to see my Dr, who assessed that I developed Shoulder Impingement Syndrome. No CT or MRI needed (only an Xray to rule out calcification). And Physical Therapy.

I couldn't afford to go 3x week, so my PT guy gave me the exercises to do DAILY at home (which I did every single day), and I met with him once a week for 2 months.

My shoulder continues to improve. I can sleep again on that side without interruption, I can raise my arm, I can hook my bra.

I won't get the flu shot again, but there is hope through Physical Therapy (I was injuring myself by trying to do it myself, looking up exercises online, without guidance).

Good Luck!

August 4, 2011 - 12:24pm
(reply to Ames)

Ames, there are at least two threads on this subject.. I know because I posted in the other one.. I am going to start physical therapy soon.. thanks for being here!

October 29, 2011 - 4:36pm
EmpowHER Guest

Hello, I am back again. I am the one with the arm pain after getting the flu shot and was assaulted. Well, guess what? I found an Attorney. We are taking this thing to court. My arm still reminds me of that horrible day at work. I was actually assaulted by my assistant manager. Let me tell you all what she was doing to me. She would slam me in the cooler, call me Crisco, tell me not to say anything to anyone about what she is doing to me, and then one day after taking the flu shot, she hits me in the same arm after I told her I had taken the shot. All this happened at Randalls, in the Deli. I managed to raise part of the funds to hire an attorney. Thanks for reading. I will keep you all posted as to what happens next with this lawsuit. Signed, Ivy

July 24, 2011 - 10:30am
EmpowHER Guest

I got my shot in October 2010 and here it is July 23rd 2011 and I still have severe pain in my left arm from that flu shot. It comes and goes but most of the time I feel pain and have weakness in that arm, shoulder pain and neck pain as well. What can I do? Like everyone else, I did not mention to my doctor for fear of being considered a hypochondriac. When it was administered it really hurt me like no other shot but just brushed it off. I plan to see my doctor and also complain to my medical provider. For me, I will not be getting a flu shot any more. Thanks to all of you for sharing your stories. I will continue to research this matter and get back to all of you with any information that will give us relief from this pain. It just never goes away.

July 24, 2011 - 9:08am
EmpowHER Guest

I was so glad to find these posts. I felt like a hypochondriac going to the doctor complaining about the pain in my shoulder. However many of the posts were about the flu shot. I had a tetnus and whopping cough shot since I just had my first grandchild. I have other health problems and regularly give myself shots. I mentioned to the woman that gave me the shot that I preferred it in my hip or thigh. She said there is too much fat there and she had to give it to me in my upper arm. I have never had a shot that high before. it was about an inch below my shoulder. Within an hour I could not raise my arm and have not been able to sleep on my left side for 5 weeks. Advil helps me get through the day but I still have limited movement and can't raise my arm to dry my hair or put a sweater over my head without a lot of discomfort. Through these posts i now realize that it was probably not the actual product but where the injection ended up.

May 12, 2011 - 4:04pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

You just described EXACTLY where I received my flu shot last October (too high) and EXACTLY the symptoms I experienced thereafter. I've posted before, but I'll post again...Find a chiropractor who does ART (Active Release Technique). They will make it go away. I was afraid I'd be debilitated for life! But , now, I have zero residual effects from the pain of that shot. We think the needle hit my bicep tendon, which would cause pain just like you described. I cannot sing enough praises for ART! I am certain that I would still be in immense pain today if it weren't for ART!

Best wishes for a healthy healing!

~ART lady :-)

May 12, 2011 - 4:38pm
EmpowHER Guest

Hello All....relief FINALLY came.
I posted with similar symptons back in September. Pain that was excruciating and made it virtually impossible to get dressed, raise my arm over my head, and sleep. After almost 6 months I am happy to say I am finally back to normal with full range mobility.

When this occured I threw myself into researching what could be the cause and how to relieve it. I found many posts that showed similar experiences, post flu shot, but none that showed suggestions for getting better! Below is what I learned and did....hope it helps!

Frozen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis) is stiffness, pain, and limited range of movement in your shoulder. This can often follow an injury. (of which an injection in and around the joint or nerve can be considered) The tissues around the joint stiffens, scar tissue forms, and this built up scar tissue is what makes shoulder movements difficult and painful.

So the key is to KEEP MOVING IT and break down that scar tissue!!! (which anyone whose done it will tell you can be an uncomfortable but necessary process)

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (motrin or advil) and application of heat to the affected area are helpful to relieve the pain (especially before bed)...however it does nothing to help break down the scar tissue which is the root of the pain and the cause of the immobility.

Gentle stretching, progressive range-of-motion excersises and continuing to use your shoulder more to increase your range of motion is what is suggested by professionals.

This was not a quick process...but it was one I did repeatedly over months and slowly (i mean slowly!) but surely the pain lessened...the range of motion increased and the "normalcy" i was use to resumed!

Good Luck & Speedy Healing!

February 5, 2011 - 6:54am
(reply to Anonymous)

Thank you for this very helpful information, and it is wonderful that you found a successful treatment!

February 6, 2011 - 8:20pm
EmpowHER Guest

I wrote awhile ago about the flu H1N1 shot I received from a pharmacist.I had been in excruciating left arm pain/shoulder/neck for 4 months...then in Jan 2011 it started to let up somewhat, but is still there presently (now February). I can sleep but if I should sleep on the left arm I wake up with stabbing pain. I have read the comments from hundreds of people suffering from the ame symptoms as we have. I can only think it must be something the pharm. company added to the serum that did not agree with hundreds or more people. I say people should organize and have an attorney represent us and find out the truth. I'd like for all those big fat wigs who are making all the money on our expense to feel our pain.

February 4, 2011 - 7:48pm
EmpowHER Guest

I had a pneumonia shot 2 months ago. I am experiencing the same symptoms and reactions from doctors that the shot could not have done this. I believe I have nerve damage from the shot. I have started to see a chiropractor and if it helps I will give you an update.

February 4, 2011 - 2:34pm
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