allergic reaction to flu & pneumonia jab! so miserable


Went to my gp last thur as was having problems with my left leg for the 2 weeks since i’ve been released from hospital for IV steroids. While I was at the gp’s he gave my the flu jab and the pneumonia jab. I asked him if I could expect any side effects as I dont have any reserves of energy at the moment - he said “you should feel nothing at all”. Fast forward to friday night around midnight & I start shaking, sweating, vomiting, ache all over and the arm I got the jabs in is swollen and purple!

Had a miserable night, rang the GP surgery the next day and he said 'oh no, it sounds like you are having an allergic reaction’He prescribed an antiobiotic for a skin infection for my arm and painkillers for all the rest. Its Monday, I’m still miserable and cant go to work. I’m wondering if having the steroids so recently has possibly effected the way my body is dealing with the jabs as havent had a problem with the flu jab in previous years - this is my first year with the Pneumonia jab.

Just want to know if this has happened to anyone else…


Here is an artical from the Dr Mecola web site that explains what is in vaccines which may give you some explanation for your problem.

Hi Sunset

I agree, I think it was the pneumonia vaccine that effected me. Your symptoms are exactly the same as mine. My arm is now purple and swollen, i’ve drawn around the bruise with a pen to see if it shrinks with the antibiotic hes now given me. It really annoys me because I told him that after IV steroids 2 weeks ago and loosing my best friend to breast cancer last week I had no reserves left and didnt want it if there woudl be side effects!

I’ve put down a horendous few days and peed off work with being out yet again!

Thanks for taking the time to reply.

My GP advised me not to have the pneumonia jab this year (I have been in hosp 3 times this year including a bout of pneumonia!) as she said the after effects cam be awful. It does sound like this is your problem sadly. I do think the doctors should be a bit more aware of these symptoms and advise us not to have the jab unless definitely needed.

I wish you well,


I am so sorry to hear about your best friend. This sadness won’t have helped the way you feel. Here’s hoping you start to feel better soon. All the best, Teresa xx

Tks Sally,

Wish my gp was as aware, he only said what it was as he was injecting me!

Tks Teresa, in a funny way it keeps things in perspective for you. I am on the mend but was so low over the weekend that it felt like things were scarily coming to a head. Have a good hubbie, fab kids and a very close family so I’ll get there. x

I am sorry that you had such a bad reaction to the pneumonia vaccination, you’ve certainly had a rotten time of it lately

I am not sure what the relevance of the link to the Mecola site was to your original post. The Mecola site was inaccurate, scare mongering and misleading.

Vaccinations are not perfect but it would be foolish not to have them and have to deal with the consequences.

I hope you are feeling much better very soon

Hi, Sorry to hear that you had such a miserable reaction. The problem was probably due to having the jabs so soon after the steroids. Steroids weaken your immune system and although the flu jab is not a live virus the pnneumonia one is and so it probably caused a mild version of the disease (which is how inoculation works). The site infection could simply have been due to normal bacteria on the skin gaining access beneath the skin and the again because your immune system was weakened it gained an opportunistic hold. I am on a form of chemo for my MS. And have to time my annual flu jabs carefully around the chemo to prevent unwanted side effects. Your doctor was a dill giving it so soon after your steroids! Also, ignore the link David603 posted. Much of that information is outdated (eg modern vaccines do NOT contain mercury as a preservative) and was clearly written by an anti-vaccine campaigner. Vaccines have saved untold numbers of lives and due to them this generation has no memories of the untold suffering caused by scourges such as diphtheria, polio, small pox and other horrific diseases of the past. Even my daughter was terribly I’ll due to getting chicken pox just before she would have been vaccinated. She was unlucky enough to develop chicken pox encephalitis which is the main reason the vaccine was developed. Thankfully she made a full recovery but many children in the past were left permanently brain damaged from this. Sorry to go off on a rant but the anti-vaccine mob really gets me angry. It was very unfortunate for you to get this bad reaction and stupid of your Dr but over all vaccines are the best thing to have happened to world public health. Having said all that, I do hope you feel better soon, Hugs, Belinda

You have had a rough time of it lately. The pneumonia jab can make some people feel quite ill.

I had the pneumonia jab a few years ago and felt ill afterwards. I’ve been in hospital twice with pneumonia. I was only 21 the first time and I was in ITU and both of my lungs collapsed.

My Mum was on the telephone and they were allowed to intercept the call to tell my parents they’d better come to the hospital. They didn’t expect me to survive the night.

Thanks to the care of Dr’s, nurses, I survived. I’d been so seriously ill and I was left incredibly weak for months. My consultant wouldn’t let me go back to work for a year.

I would advise anyone to have the pneumonia jab. Pneumonia kills and being in a ITU ward is frightening.



Really sorry you had such a bad reaction - I hope you feel better soon. I’ve just read Jacqui’s vivid description of having pneumonia - good thing you are now protected from that sort of terrifying experience! It’s rotten luck when you are one of the unlucky ones who react badly to a vaccine.

Here’s a link to some interesting stuff about ‘Dr’ Mercola’s quackery empire, by the way.



I didn’t know about the steroids / active vaccines thing, so I’m glad to learn about it, just in case… Sorry you had to suffer so I could though! Sounds miserable :frowning: I hope you get better very soon.

Karen x

LMAO Alison

Oops, David603!

PS What on earth has a link about childhood vaccines found on a scaremongering, self-promoting website known to make false claims got to do with an MSer having a vaccine against pneumonia?!

For those who seem not to like Dr Mecola then here are a couple of other links one UK one US on the subject of mercury–-the-centre-for-devious-cover-ups-–-and-public-deception

The fact is vaccines are neither totally effective or totally safe. People need to research the issue for themselves and come to their own conclusions, they after all live with the results of their decisions.

More to the piont for those vaccines that dio not contain mercury and that is most if not all child vaccines, what has it been replaced with and how safe is that?

David, those links are just as bad. Be careful with websites like this that are scaremongering and have little if any scientific credibility. Reseaching the issue is important of course but it is essential to be able to recognise reputable souces.

I know you have a problem with big pharmaceutical companies but they are the very companies who develop vaccines that have saved and are continuing to save countless lives worldwide over decades. Think again about measles, diptheria, polio, smallpox… the list is long and unpleasant.

David, your idea of ‘people need to research the issue for themselves and come to their own conclusions’ seems to me to mean ‘assume that any old unscrupulous and unvalidated cobblers spewed out by some snake-oil merchant is as valuable as proper information.’ Remind me not to ask for your recommendation if I need a brain surgeon.


I have just read the “information” on those links with my mouth literally agape. I cannot believe that people actually have the gall to write such scaremongering rubbish. What saddens me more is that some people might actually believe it.

But I guess it’s much easier to persuade someone if they already possess a blinkered acceptance of a like-minded dogma and, as such, are prone to irrational, biased, subjective thinking; never questioning anything that concurs with their own bigotry, no matter how ludicrous.

But I digress. Sorry. Back to the point…

Here are a couple of quotes from websites that aren’t run by people with ulterior and selfish motives:

“Two hundred years after the discovery of vaccine by the English physician Edward Jenner, immunization can be credited with saving approximately 9 million lives a year worldwide. A further 16 million deaths a year could be prevented if effective vaccines were deployed against all potentially vaccine-preventable diseases.” (

“The benefits of vaccination extend beyond prevention of specific diseases in individuals. They enable a rich, multifaceted harvest for societies and nations. Vaccination makes good economic sense, and meets the need to care for the weakest members of societies. Reducing global child mortality by facilitating universal access to safe vaccines of proven efficacy is a moral obligation for the international community as it is a human right for every individual to have the opportunity to live a healthier and fuller life.” (

Hmm. Who to believe? People who allegedly make millions out of scaring people into buying their products and/or supporting their websites so they can rake in advertising, publishing and PR fees or non-profit organisations whose very existence is aimed at helping mankind? Well, that’s a toughie. Not.

David, I would be more circumspect on the links you post.

You don’t want to undermine your credibility on the ‘scientific evidence’ you quote, do you?

I am so sorry to read that you have been feeling so rough on the double cocktail of jabs, especially after your bad news that you have had. I just wish to send you some possitive vibes and assure you that we are thinking of you. I hope that you are soon feeling on top form (as much as Auntie MS will allow).

Very best wishes,


I seem not to be able to quote any source on the subject of vaccines that meets with approval in some circles here.

Here is a couple of other vaccine related comments from the web.

I do agree scientific method is our best guide to safety and effectiveness of any treatment. My problem is that I do not see that the current system provides accurate unbiased information based on science because so much so called scientific evidence is financed by vested interests with the primary motif of selling drugs or vaccines.

You then of course have many treatments that do not have a profit motive to justify clinical trials.

So let me ask a question of those who find my links unacceptable.

Where does a person with MS go to find reliable unbiased scientific information on which vaccines are safe to accept when you have a diagnosis of MS?

i.e. where are all the double blind trials of vacancies on people with MS.

If you look at the flue vaccine just as an example someone with MS may do that once a year for 40 years. Where is the evidence that is a safe thing to do.

My wife on diagnosis was advised not to ever accept any further vaccines because of the risk of triggering off a worsening of her MS. Not based on science just the opinion of a doctor who had experience of MS and vaccines. Other doctors would not give that advise as I think we know but my wife has chosen to follow the first advise given to her.

Over the years many people with MS have told me they feel one vaccine or another has made their MS worse and many others seem to have them without a problem.

So where is the independent science based comment I am allegedly missing?

Mel, this is a good suggestion - I have just spent a happy hour rummaging in PubMed and the dinner is never going to get cooked at this rate. It really is a wonderful resource.



Sorry you are feeling so poorly. As someone who regulary gives these jabs can I just say that the pneumoccocal vaccine is NOT a live vaccine however it can make you feel very poorly after. It is safe to give with flu vaccination. I don’t give it if currently on steroids or antibiotics as it can lessen its efficacy. For any information on vaccines if you put green book into your search engine and go to dept of health website green book it will give you up to date and correct info on every vaccine licensed for use in the UK…hope this helps kind regards Sarah x