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why my shoulder STILL hurts after 2010 flu shot

By September 26, 2010 - 5:48am
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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?

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EmpowHER Guest

I too have been experiencing pain after getting the flu shot. I just got the shot yesterday and the pain has been getting progressively worse. At first the pain was only around the injection site, one day later, my pain is going through my entire bicep, into my armpit, and down the back of my shoulder blade and ribs, and going slightly up my neck. It is very scary that there are so many related issues, what is going on? I am calling the doctor first thing in the am.

November 4, 2010 - 10:34pm
EmpowHER Guest

I got a flu shot about 2 weeks ago and now have pain in the shoulder primarily and occasionally over to the neck. Very achy. Aches if I just let my arm hang, but better if I prop it up on a table or something. Hurts when I sleep. Actually feels better when I sleep on it rather than on my good shoulder. Advil doesn't help much, but Alieve helps a bit. Doesn't seem to be getting any better.

November 4, 2010 - 9:11pm
Expert HERWriter Guide Blogger

Anon - Readers have had x-rays done and ultrasound exams, but this is the first time anyone has mentioned a possible needle break. Please let us know what you do and what you learn. Good luck! Pat

November 3, 2010 - 5:13pm

OMGosh I never even considered the needle breaking. STILL in pain from the original post (Sept 2010) . This arm is worthless. I did not see a Dr (what's the point)? Let us know how that x-ray goes... interesting.

November 3, 2010 - 3:10pm
EmpowHER Guest

I had a flu shot in early October and it hurt immediately and bled. My shoulder hurt for at least 10 days where undressing was painful and I had trouble sleeping. My doctor emailed to use heat and ibuprofen and the pain did subside, but never fully went away when I did certain motions like undressing. Just a couple of nights ago, my shoulder hurt enough to wake me up in the middle of the night and I emailed my doctor who said she wants me to have an x-ray to rule out that the needle didn't break. That's when I found this site. It's been a month now and while the pain is less, it's still there. I'm hesitant to get an x-ray, but curious if anyone else was directed to get an x-ray. I have had flu shots for over 20 years and never had this kind of pain.

November 3, 2010 - 10:42am
EmpowHER Guest

November 1, 2010: I received my flu shot three weeks ago, for several days immediately following the shot my upper arm ached and was tender enough to wake me up during the night. Three weeks later and my arm continues to be noticeably sore but not enough to wake me up now. I received my shot high on my left arm, near my shoulder bone. I have never had a reaction from a shot before.

November 1, 2010 - 9:21pm
EmpowHER Guest

I am glad I am not alone. I have been having this pain in my upper arm since the 2010 shot. The day I got it my arm was just about usless. At night I had to lift my arm with my other arm. I can't take off my shirts without pain. Sleeping like the other comments is hard. I also wake up when moving, and sleeping on the arm is painful. I thought maybe when receiving the shot they hit my bone. My arms are not very meaty so thought it could be possible. It has been appox. 3 weeks since the shot. The rest of my family received the shot and no one has any complaints of lingering pain.

November 1, 2010 - 5:45pm

This thread is very interesting. I also read the one started last year. It's comforting to know I haven't been imagining what I have been feeling. I have a similar story to everyone elses but with some small twists. I got my seasonal flu shot in mid September this year, like I have for the last 5 or 6 years, from an Aenta sposored clinic at my place of work. Never experienced any reactions other than mild discomfort. I don't recall anything unusual about the placement of the injection except that it did seem to be a little more painful than usual, but no big deal. I expected some muscle pain for the next few days as I had in the past. This time it seemed to be more intense and last a couple of days longer than I recalled from years past. The muscle pain did finally go away. It's had to say when the next sensation started because I didn't associate the feeling with my injection initially. It may have been a week later. I started to notice a tugging feeling at the area of my injection. At first, I thought I had something scratching me in my shirt or something stuck (like a splinter) in my arm. The feeling would come and go. As time goes by the sensation occurs more frequently and it feels more like my muscle is being tugged or tweaked. I rub the location and the feeling usually subsides. It's fortunately not a real painful experience, but it is annoying and troublesome. I hope it stops like some of the other posters have said their symptoms have, but lately the incidences seem to be more frequent. I'll be keeping an eye on this post to see what becomes of everyone with similar reactions. I just wanted to raise my hand and join the crowd.

October 31, 2010 - 7:23am
EmpowHER Guest

I to have been having arm pain from the flu shot I got 4 days ago. I made a mistake by not getting the shot in my right arm, they did it in the left. I have a bad shoulder from a severe accident 4 years ago and it gives me lots of pain at times. I hope things get better as now my bad should and arm hurt most of the time.

October 29, 2010 - 10:20pm
Expert HERWriter Guide Blogger

Hi all - First, FYI, below are the instructions provided by the Centers for Disease Control on how a vaccine is properly administered.

Locate the deltoid muscle. This muscle is in the upper arm and forms the round appearance of the shoulder. To locate the region to administer the vaccine, measure four fingers down from the top of the shoulder. The location that the flu shot should be administered is directly below the bottom of the fourth finger.

Second, to Kat - Glad you've been advised to try slowly stretching your arm as much as you can. If you follow your instincts and remain immobile it can lead to frozen shoulder which is an orthopedic condition typically requiring additional diagnostic tests, treatment and expense. Your health service has given good advice. Pat

October 26, 2010 - 4:23pm
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