H1N1 Shot Immediately Followed By Pain And Muscle Weakness

by Carla

Hi there,

I have been researching a lot and came across Rebecca's post to you.

I also got the H1N1 shot too high in my shoulder and have rotator cuff issues since the shot on Oct 28th.

Within hours I was unable to move my arm and had excrutiating pain. I have done physio, massage, laser and still have a lot of supraspinatus weakness. My cuff muscles dont even hold my humeral head firmly into the joint.

I am exercising but have limited progress- just dont know what to do....



Joshua Answers:

Hi Carla.

That doesn't sound fun at all....

I doubt it was about the shot being too high.

Possibly the needle hit just the right spot in a nerve/tendon which caused a cascade of negative factors. It's possible, but unlikely.

Needle insertions themselves have their risks. Not very risky, but it happens. There are nerves in there, and if a needle happents to pierce one...

It's more likely something to do with A. Your body's reaction to the contents of the injection and/or B. the unhealthy ingredients of the shot interacting poorly with your structure and system.

The good news is, it doesn't sound like Guillain-Barre Syndrome.

When the Swine Flu shots were first released, UK neurologists were warned to keep an eye out for Guillain-Barre symptoms.

Bad news. No cure. Doesn't sound like you.

People can have 'allergic' reactions to flu shots. People can have weird, way over the top responses to flu shots.

And the fact is, there are toxic ingredients in the H1N1 flue shots that some people's body's don't do well with. Deaths and damage is showing up in people who've had the swine flu vaccinations.

Whether due to toxicity or not, I rather suspect you got the shot, your nervous system saw danger and reacted/overreacted in this particular manner. It's strange, odd, but weird stuff
happens with the body.

So. Either the needle (and forced insertion of fluid) caused some actual physical damage, or your body is responding to toxic/foreign elements in the swine flu shot.

Let's investigate and see what we can figure out.


1. Is the pain/weakness spreading?

2. Did it show up exactly how it is now? Or did it start small and the grow/spread.

3. If it's 'getting better', what exactly does that mean? Details please.

4. What was/is your overall health?

5. Had any antibiotics in the lat 5 years? Levaquin, Cipro, anything else in the fluoroquinolone family? It sounds similar to Levaquin Tendonitis.

Let's rule that out.

6. What are doctors saying about this? Are they treating this like a physical injury or as a swine fle shot side effect? Does it seem like they have any idea what they're doing?

Answer the above, add anything else that might be helpful/of interest, and let's see what we see.

And I'll suggest a couple things that you can do that may help.

Please reply using the comment link below. Do not submit a new submission to answer/reply, it's too hard for me to find where it's supposed to go.

And, comments have a 3,000 character limit so you may have to comment twice.

Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert

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Dec 27, 2009
PART 2 - answers - H1N1 Shot Immediately Followed By Pain And Muscle Weakness
by: Carla

Thanks for your prompt reponse!

Here are the answers to your questions.

My health is excellent and I dont have any prior joint injuries.

Initially the pain was very bad but has decreased. My strength is also increasing slowly. I still have a lot of weakness in my suprasinatus.

My physio is baffled- he gave me exercises and they helped but I have researched and started targeting the supraspinatus. I am exercising almost daily but taking it slow and steady.

I haven't been back to see my sports medicine specialist - honestly- because I am scared he will give me an injection in my joint and I dont think I can even consider that!

I haven't been on any antibiotics in the past 5 years and dont take any medications- just vitamins. (I am 42 yrs old and active)
I have noticed that my humerus head seems to stick out quite a bit in some exercises or movements.

I am working hard to keep proper posture and hold it in the right place but that makes me a bit nervous. Any exercises I can do to strengthen the cuff so it holds the humerus head better?

Thanks again!


Dec 29, 2009
PART 3 - H1N1 Shot Immediately Followed By Pain And Muscle Weakness
by: The Tendonitis Expert

Joshua Comments:

Hi Carla.

1. So....say a little more about the humerous head sticking out more, and the shoulder being lax.

Ligaments should be holding it in place....

Weak muscles makes sense, but (to clarify) are you saying that your arm is coming out of socket?

Or is it just 'more loose' because of muscle weakness?

2. Yeah, I wouldn't want a shot in there either. Plus, a corticosteroid shot wouldn't help you at all.....-maybe- it would decrease pain, but it certainly wouldn't fix anything or help your nervous/immune system deal with the invaders it is/was responding to.

3. Exercise and strengthening and posture awareness is good. Increasing your water intake is good. Massage and icing are good.

And unless an actual nerve was pierced/severed I -suspect- that this is one of those things that really will just take some time to get back to normal.

Your body received foreign material. Your body did not like that. There could be some toxic kind of damage. There could be just some overwhelming response by your body that looks like the symptoms you have.

Your physio is baffled because you don't have a 'physical' injury. You are dealing with a nervous/immune system response.

You don't need to heal so much as the system needs to start working properly, if that makes sense.

Like I said, there are some lab tests you could do to see exactly where your body is at on a variety of markerers, and if you have the money and inclination to do so, great. Could be some nutrient issue, some detox issue, some muscle energy production issue, at play that may/may not speed up your recovery if dealt with.

And, my prediction is that you will slowly recover as your body does its thing. Thankfully, I don't think this is the same kind of thing as Levaquin Tendonitis.

Oh, and did I say Vitamin D? If you don't know what your levels are, find out. Vitamin D is a huge player in immune system health.

So, I'm not sure how what I just said will come across. Let me know how all that sounds to you, and if you have any questions.

Apr 12, 2010
same symptoms
by: Janet

I, like Carla, have had pain in the site and beyond, where I had the H1N1 shot in November.

Although there was some immediate pain at the site of the injection right from the start, the real pain began about January and is no better now in April.

Sometimes it just throbs and other times I do something with my arm, such as putting it through my sleeve, and I can barely stand the pain which lasts for maybe 20 seconds and then subsides.

The doctor thinks the muscle was bruised with the shot and that it will take a long time to heal.

I'm not sure about massage but ice seems to help a bit.


Joshua Comments:

If it's actually -just- bruised (needle punctured artery/vein, blood leaked out) then self massage and ice will create circulatory turn over, old stuff out, new stuff in, and make the 'healing' faster.

Oct 16, 2010
Shoulder Pain from 2010 H1N1
by: Cheryl

2 weeks ago I went into Walgreens and received the 2010 H1N1/Flu shot. I have had flu shots in the past and I have never had a problem with them.

When I was injected, it felt as if the syrum was entering my shoulder joint, however, it was not painful. Within 1 hour, my shoulder started to hurt and by the next day I could barely lift my arm over my head.

Week 1: I was taking 600 mg of Ibuprophen every four hours, ice heat, rest, etc.; week 2 I saw my GP and he prescribed a 7 day course of Prednisone.

Of course they are puzzled about whether it was the shot or coincidence. I SAY IT WAS THE SHOT. . HELP! What on earth could have done this. I will give it another week and then off to the Orthopedist. Using topicals, ice, heat and rest.


Joshua Commnents:

Hi Cheryl.

Sorry to hear that...welcome to the growing ranks of people with bad reactions to the flu vaccine.

It -could- be coincidence....but common sense says that if you were fine, got the shot, and then weren't fine.....

The fact is, flu shots in general and the H1N1 potentially more so, have all sorts of bad things in them. Yes, that is a technical term.

Your body does not like bad things. It attacks them to protect you, and kicks in a protective response to protect you. Ironically (if that's the right word?) those two actions can cause you more pain. You know how you ache from a fever? Your body causes that, it's a by product of the protective mechanism.

Depending on your body's overall ability to overcome that, which takes into account specific and overall nutrition, physical health, circulatory system health, etc, this may go away fast or slow or not at all.

You're doing the right things. More effort on the nutrition side maybe, good fats, magnesium, tumeric and omega 3 fats for anti-inflammatory effect, massage and icing for circulation, etc.

Doctors have a hard time admitting that flu shots are anything but holy grail of goodness, so they certainly don't have any answers for you.

I'd like to have more of an answer for you.....but we kind of just have to make you as healthy as possibly so your body can overcome the negative factors.

Feb 07, 2011
My daughter has SAME thing!
by: Mom of Two

My 18 year old daughter has gotten a flu shot every year for about 7 years except in 2009 when we lost track of time & let it pass.

This year (Jan 2011) she had to get one so she can job-shadow nurses & physicians (to determine which medical field she wants to pursue in college).

At first her arm was sore - standard flu shot stuff. About a week later she said she could hardly move her arm. She held it like it was in a sling. She was in agony. Even the smallest movement caused her to tear-up. She has trouble raising it up high, she has trouble dressing, it is weak so she has trouble working out & lifting things.

It's been 5 weeks and there's only about a 30% improvement.

She's been back to the clinic where she got it and they told her to take Advil for a week and then come back if it's not better. They suggested an infection in the muscle?! Anyway, we are headed back this week to have a chat with them.

A friend of ours who is a doctor thinks that she had a reaction to the h1n1. The fact that she's gotten other flu shots & not had a problem but this one caused a problem indicated (to him) that it doesn't agree with her body.

I'll update here if I have more to report. It's hard to research this topic because "arm pain" & flu shot are so common. This is different and it should be examined by someone. I plan to have the clinic fill out the cdc forms to report this problem.


Joshua Comments:

Hi MomOf2

Please do have them make a report. As much as the pharmaceutical and medical industry like to believe that all flu shots and vaccinations are harmless, the proof is in the pudding, as they say.

Along those lines, if they make a guess that she has a muscle infection and want to give her antibiotics 'just in case', make sure she doesn't get a fluoroquinolone like Cipro or Levaquin.

Mar 15, 2011
H1N1 flu shot
by: Sue

October 11, 2010 I got the combination H1N1 flu shot, one week later became ill, weak, racing heart, then about one month after the shot began all over joint and muscle pain. Even reaching around to fasten a bra was agony.
A blood test revealed infection and inflammation.
I am still experiencing the same joint and muscle pain and today, March 15, 2011 I took yet a more extensive set of blood tests. I know without a doubt that this was the result of the H1N1.
I have taken the seasonal flu shot for many years with no problems whatsoever, however I and my physician have no doubt that the H1N1 was the cause.

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