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Medical dilemma?

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Lemon Quarter
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Medical dilemma?


Postby XFool » September 12th, 2019, 10:44 pm

I wonder if anyone has any serious experience or knowledge pertaining to this matter.

I've recently received a text message wrt appointments for annual Flu injections at my GP's surgery. For years when I qualified I didn't bother with them. Last year I had my first Flu injection. As usual with me, I had no following reaction or allergic response and felt entirely normal the following day and immediately after.

In the following week (I believe) I also started to develop very minor cold symptoms, without a sore throat. unfortunately this went on to gradually develop into very severe bronchitis with repeating severe coughing, which had not the slightest effect apart from wearing me down. It was so severe I stared to have real difficulty breathing at times. My lungs seemed to be disappearing and I felt I was suffocating.

I went to a hospital for a blood test - an unrelated matter - and started to feel unwell (more unwell) waiting for the test, it felt as if another stroke was imminent. I went to the test room and told them I was feeling unwell but still agreed to have the blood test (later proved to be useless in the circumstances!). Afterwards I said "I think I should see somebody", they told me I could go to their A&E, which I did.

By the time I got to the desk at A&E I could no longer speak, or explain what was wrong. It was all I could do to try hard at keeping on breathing. They whipped me in, I believe they may have thought I had had or might be having a heart attack. Various tests (including another blood test in A&E!) showed this was not so and I had recovered enough by then. I then had a chest X-ray, saw a consultant and was given a course of antibiotics.

I believe I still had no reason to associate all this with the earlier Flu inoculation. Then, one day while sitting in the GP's waiting room, I picked up and read a leaflet which gave a simple explanation, for the general public, of the Flu vaccination for the general public. I was very struck by this: "About ten to fourteen days after you receive the flu injection your body starts to produce antigens to the flu virus"

"ten to fourteen days"! That surprised me as I did not know this. Furthermore, this corresponds pretty well exactly to the delay after I received my first Flu injection and the onset of my very debilitating condition.

So, that's the dilemma - do I dismiss all the above as just a coincidence and go ahead with this years Flu injection?
I really don't want a repeat performance.

Lemon Half
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Re: Medical dilemma?


Postby Dod101 » September 12th, 2019, 10:57 pm

I have never had any reaction to a flu injection but why not ask your GP? He ought to know better than any of us what is your best course of action.

One question to ask would be 'Am I better suffering the reaction to the flu injection or to risk the flu itself?'


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Re: Medical dilemma?


Postby servodude » September 13th, 2019, 12:58 am

I'd go for the jab

I'm in Aus where the flu season the year is coming to an end
- it started early and according to the media it started hard
(this is from July: ... far-120093
this from a couple of days ago: ... -tops-100/)

This was the first time it hit my house with both my 12year old and my wife coming down with it and bronchitis as a result
- it was a bloody frightening two weeks

We would normally have got the shot; but were caught off guard with the season starting early

This ties in to what you were reading: it's the Antigens produced by your body that provide the protection against the flu
- it takes 2 to 3 weeks to develop immunity after having the vaccine
- so if it WAS flu you contracted (and I'm surprised they didn't take a culture for tests - as it's useful to confirm any subsequent diagnoses within your family) it probably would not have happened if you had had the shot a couple of weeks earlier

see: ... -flu-myths

1: MYTH: You can catch the flu from the vaccine.

The flu shot is made from an inactivated virus that can't transmit infection. So people who get sick after receiving a flu vaccination were going to get sick anyway. It takes a week or two to get protection from the vaccine. But people assume that because they got sick after getting the vaccine, the flu shot caused their illness.

It can be very easy to conflate coincidence with cause when it happens to us but if I were you I'd get the jab
- and talk to my GP

good luck
- sd

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Re: Medical dilemma?


Postby bungeejumper » September 13th, 2019, 6:58 pm

NEXT MYTH: You're protected as soon as you've had the jab. In reality, it takes 7-14 days for full protection to set in. And you are perfectly free to collect any virus of your choosing during those 14 days. ;)

AND ANOTHER MYTH: The flu vaccine will protect you from all flu strains. No chance! It covers about four strains, and those four will be the ones that the medical powers that be expect to be the most widespread during the coming winter. You are still more than welcome to catch any other strains.

IIRC, the cocktail of antiviruses is chosen some time around June or July, after which the race is on to grow enough stuff to be available for distribution in October. That's quite a logistical exercise! One of the Brexit worries of the moment is that import delays will mean the antivirus won't be ready in time for most or Britain. I couldn't possibly comment.

I can, however, comment on how sensible it was of the OP to seek prompt medical help for that horrible cough and loss of speech. Seven years ago, I had symptoms exactly like that after a really filthy dose of flu, which turned out to be the developing stages of bacterial pneumonia! That's the kind that can put you in a coffin in a few days if you're unlucky - I was hospitalised for ten days. :( So the OP's course of antibiotics might just have fended off something much worse than simply flu. Good call.


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Re: Medical dilemma?


Postby XFool » October 3rd, 2019, 11:53 pm

OK. To follow up on this:

Went to surgery, discussed issue with nurse. They then became reluctant to go ahead because of my expressed doubts. Further discussion with nurse and reassurance that last year's problem was likely just a coincidence and I agreed to go ahead.

No 'reaction' to the injection - as is usual for me. More significantly, now 12 days and counting from the injection and no sign of any cold etc.

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Re: Medical dilemma?


Postby feder1 » October 20th, 2019, 8:25 am

I had my first flu injection Fluad last Saturday and from Thursday night have had a very sore throat and runny nose.

Last night was diabolical as I could barely could sleep with what felt like a red hot poker down my gullet. Temp. is 38.1.

I hope I feel better soon with the paracetamol and throat pastilles.

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