Facebook Pixel

why my shoulder STILL hurts after 2010 flu shot

By September 26, 2010 - 5:48am
Rate This

I started this new share because I got the new flu shot 3 weeks ago- the one that contains the reg. flu and the H1N1 combined. I got it done at Walgreens. When the Dr (pharmacist, actually) put it in, it did not hurt. Even though it felt like it was in the bone and very high up. The actuall dispensing of the vaccine felt like it took longer than usual. Since then, my shoulder still hurts and I complain about it several times a day. I cannot sleep on it at night and everytime I roll over in bed, it wakes me (all night long). I have rec'd the flu shot for years and I never got this pain. For this reason, I will NOT be forcing my 10 yr old to get it because she could not tollerate this pain and would have missed many days of school thus far. Comments?

Add a Comment188 Comments

tgoll- that's exactly what I googled. Over 3 months later, it still is just a pain. Literally. I wouldn't go blaming yr tennis. They have a good link to the CDC a few inputs ahead of this- My friends all think I am crazy or something still complaining about this pain, sleep, day after day... From what I understand, including my own, the Dr doesn't know what I am talking about.

November 16, 2010 - 5:47am
(reply to telephoneme)

I did fill out the CDC thing yesterday, that's how convinced I am that the flu shot did this to my arm. Given that we all had EXACTLY the same thing happen, there has to be something to this. I think we should all try to fill in the CDC form just so they know there is something wrong with either the formulation or the way the shot is administered. In casual conversation with friends, it seems that those that had it administered by a nurse or doctor had absolutely no problem with the shot. If I had to bet, I'd say it was in the way the shot was administered and we all were the unlucky ones that had it placed in a really bad spot. At a tennis match about a week after the shot, I had said aloud that my arm was killing me and I think it was from the flu shot (I had enough ibuprofen in me to kill a horse, which is how I was able to gut it out to play--and 2 hours is about how long ibuprofen mitigates the pain to a dull ache). My partner literally said, 'did you get it at Rite Aid?' and I almost broke my neck doing a double take. She described the exact same events. She's an RN and even asked the pharmacist administering the shot if there was extra volume in the shot this year and why was it so high up. Pretty soon everyone on the court piped in with friends/relatives getting their shot at a pharmacy and having the same reaction. So, if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck.....I'm just hoping it subsides eventually b/c this is ridiculous.

November 16, 2010 - 7:07am

Holy cow, I just googled 'pain in the arm after 2010 flu shot' b/c my arm STILL hurts 2 weeks after the flu shot in my right arm. I can ditto every situation mentioned above: 1. Got my flu shot at Rite Aid; 2. The shot seemed very 'high' on my arm and it took 'forever', almost like a steroid shot in your elbow; 3. I had a slight tingling in my right thumb as the shot was being administered; 4. My arm felt like a bus ran over it for 2.5 days after the shot; 5. Since then, I can barely raise my arm in any direction--the pain is really, really sharp and bad; it hurts to cross my arm in front of my body, behind my body, or lift it straight out or to the side, similar to a frozen shoulder; the pain is mostly in the deltoid, radiating down my bicep towards the elbow (elbow does not hurt). I can barely sleep at night and forget about sleeping on my right side. Basically no position is comfortable as my arm aches like a toothache. I play tennis, but my activity has not changed, so though it could be tennis-related, I find it hard to believe that all of the symptoms occurred immediately after the flu shot and never went away. I'm going to follow up with my doctor and will report back if I learn anything.

November 15, 2010 - 4:30pm
Expert HERWriter Guide Blogger

Anon - Thanks for this information and letting us know you were able to fill out the CVC report at Walgreen's. Those who want to also file a report can do so directly by going to this link: http://vaers.hhs.gov/esub/index

The statement about being told to give the shot in a higher location is interesting. We have not seen any data indicating that the CDC has changed their recommendations and given clinics this type of instruction. We have, however, heard from a lot of people who had their shots at Walgreen's. Perhaps the instructions are from Walgreen's. If anyone knows for sure please let us know. Pat

November 12, 2010 - 7:05pm
EmpowHER Guest

I got my flu shot at Walgreens about 6 weeks ago. The injection hurt immediately and didn't feel like any other flu shots I've ever been given. Really stung for a long while. Had the normal sore shoulder for a few days later, but the difference this year was that the pain never went away. It became more of a joint pain with stiffness and some sharp pains too. Sleeping on my shoulder is still painful enough to wake me. Although slightinly better with each week, I still have pain when I lift my arm. I went back to Walgreens and filled out a CDC report. CDC is interested in knowing any type of reactions. Pharmacist told me that they instructed them to make a "U" shape with their pointing finger and thumb and place on the top of the shoulder. It is supposed to be given higher on the arm than in the past. Never again. I will go to my doctor next time and tell them my experience. I hope this pain eventually goes away. Anti-inflammatories help, but don't last long.

November 12, 2010 - 6:03pm
EmpowHER Guest

I posted on Nov 4, 2010 and just wanted to report back that the pain isn't gone, but seems to be improving. It's not across my shoulder and neck any more, just right in the shoulder/arm joint. Anyway, just wanted to report back that it seems to be getting better.

November 11, 2010 - 7:53am
(reply to Anonymous)

Happy for u, but keep yr fingers crossed. I eventually crossed that threshold about 3 weeks ag- shot was in Sept.--, and that pain in my arm is NO better. Problem now is that, I feel more comf. to sleep on the bad arm... wakes me only about 3x a night compared to 20-- SO, when I wake in the morning, my arm hurts all day. This is just unbelievable.

November 11, 2010 - 12:22pm
(reply to Anonymous)

I'm glad to hear it! Thank you for checking back in.

November 11, 2010 - 7:58am
EmpowHER Guest

I went to Walgreens and had the flu shoot on Sept 19th and my shoulder still hurts and is very sore. I can hardly raise my arm and when I do, I use my other arm to help and it is very painful. When I received the shot, I was told that my arm MAY be sore for a few days - and now I am reading 6 months of this. I don't know about taking the shot next year, if this is the case.

November 8, 2010 - 2:28pm
EmpowHER Guest

This is EXACTLY what happened to me. Got it at Walgreens, by the pharmacist and I thought it was unusually high up. Whenever the plunger was pressed I felt tingling all the way down to my fingertips. I couldn't move my arm at all for 3 days. It's now been over a week and I can't sleep on it. I awake several times in the night and it goes numb. Very painful.

November 7, 2010 - 11:09am
Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy
Add a Comment

All user-generated information on this site is the opinion of its author only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for any medical conditions. Members and guests are responsible for their own posts and the potential consequences of those posts detailed in our Terms of Service.



Get Email Updates

Flu Guide

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.


Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!