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

EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

About 3 days after the flu shot in Oct. 2012, both my upper arms have been in pain. I can hardly undo my bra or get my arms up over my head to take off a shirt. It is very painful. never had this before and did not start a new exercise program. There was something in this year flu shot I think affected the muscles in upper arms. it is still happening. 12/30/12

December 30, 2012 - 8:40pm
EmpowHER Guest

I received a flu shot in early September 2011 and the shot hurt a lot more than it usually does and continued to hurt for about a month. I could not reach behind my back to hook my bra and I could not carry my children on my left side and even had difficulty lifting small objects. I finally spoke with the infection control person at the hospital where I work (where the shot is practically forced on us, they would like to make it mandatory), and after talking to other people in the hospital and finding out there were 3 other affected employees it was determined that we should all be seen by an MD in the clinic. It was determined that I have bursitis in my shoulder and I opted to have a cortisone injection. It hurt like heck but was a miracle for about 3 months. Now since the beginning of the year it has begun getting progressively worse and now it is worse than before!!! It wakes me up multiple times a night and it is so weak I can't even lift a plate or cup to put away in the cupboard. My job requires the use of both arms all day and I am trying to decide what to do. I don't want to get another steroid injection if it will only last a couple months but I am not sure what my other options are! I have heard physical therapy doesn't help. What I would really like is to have an MRI to see what kind of damage has been done but I am sure work comp wouldn't want to pay for that! :P So for all of you suffering with the same problems, don't let anyone tell you that it wasn't the flu shot! Make sure you learn your rights in this situation and if nobody listens, consider seeking legal advice! I am in month 8 since the shot and I am miserable so I don't know if it ever goes away or if it will take many more months or even years, but this SUCKS! Good luck to you all!

April 16, 2012 - 7:14am
(reply to Anonymous)

I had commented the PREVIOUS flu season (aka not 2011-12, but 2010-11) b/c I had the same thing happen to me. So, this year I was 'smart' and got the flu shot (ok, not so smart) in my non-dominant, left arm. I made sure that I did not get it too high up, etc. Guess what. SAME THING. The only difference is that I could lift my left arm up by only wincing, not outright, holy crap, I can't lift my arm, pain. I got the shot in October and the pain was finally gone by April, so about 5-6 months. There is something in those flu shots that is just not right-- But meanwhile, my husband had the shots at the exact same time as me both years and had no adverse reactions at all. I just don't get it.

April 16, 2012 - 8:19am
EmpowHER Guest

I had the double flu shot in Dec. and have terrible shoulder and upper arm pain still,I thot it was damage of some sort.I am 58 and this was the first flu shot I ever got...I won't get another!

April 13, 2012 - 1:09pm

I wish I'd found this thread a year and a half ago. I received my flu shot on October 6, 2010 and my life changed, so far, permanently. I've never experienced such excruciating and debilitating pain in my life. After struggling for 4 months and hearing everything from doctors that had no idea what to do, I finally went to a neurologist in February 2011 who had experience with my symptoms. I was diagnosed with Parsonage Turner Syndrome (PTS). There is no cure and only experimental treatment. I'm on some unbelievably strong meds and have been for over a year now. I can report significant improvement; however, I would have to say that my pain level has been reduced from "ready to check out" to "this really hurts". I hope to continue my slow recovery but am concerned that, when this has healed enough, I must then detox from the strong pain meds that I must surely be addicted to by now. I feel that my future is both bleak and hopeful. Only time and God can tell. I wish I could have gained strength and encouragement from all of you here. If you still have no name for the pain you've experienced from your flu shot, ask your doctor about PTS.

March 17, 2012 - 7:00pm

I, too, decided to get another flu shot this season. But I was careful to "tell" the nurse where on my arm to give it as I believe it is the placement of the shot, and not the med itself, that causes the problems. And I am happy to report that I have had no pain or lasting affects from the shot.

February 6, 2012 - 7:11am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to gettinghelp)

Yes, that is eactly what I did. I basically TOLD her where to ut the shot and not too high. That was a few months ago and no roblems this year.

February 6, 2012 - 8:10am
EmpowHER Guest

Addendum to post of 2-3-2012. I am Debra who entered posts last year.

February 3, 2012 - 9:14am
EmpowHER Guest

It took almost 6 months or more before my shoulder and arm returned to normal. It was similar to a frozen shoulder and hurt when I rolled over on it in bed. I did get the shot again this past flu season, and all was good this time around. I think the year before, it was related to the batch and there was more H1N1 in it.

February 3, 2012 - 9:10am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

I received the shot in Sept 2012 and the shot was given high on my left shoulder. I can hardly hold a cup of tea. and putting dishes away are quit a problem. The pain has not gone away and the arm is week. I can type but can not switch my lamp .I I finally called the pharmacy and he said to go back where I got the shot. I am doing that tomorrow. Thanks I thought I was the only one that this happen to. I have had shots every year and this is the first time this has happen to me. I had the shots for flu they give the elderly. Three in one.
Thank you for doing this site,

November 5, 2012 - 11:14pm
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!