The Flu Jab

I cannot say this loud or clear enough. DO NOT TAKE THE FLU JAB!!!. And especially if you have MS or other autoimmune-related illness. I spent years researching this and sent emails to my colleagues at work every year when that time came around when the firm would bring in a nurse to poke people with whatever foreign chemical the laboratories drummed up. In December 2009, fighting fit, teaching dance, yoga and travelling the world rock-climbing, I received the very first letter from my doctor advising me to “take the jab” along with the because and whys, noting that as I was diagnosed with MS several years back (yet still symptom-free) I was at risk. I ummed and ahhed and went against all tradition and had the jab. A couple of months later, my leg started feeling heavy and finally in May 2010 I had my first ever relapse. Two years later, I’m hobbling around on a stick. Earller this year, yet another reminder dropped re. the flu jab. I had no intention of taking it so binned the letter. I asked my MS nurse anyway and her response was, “Um…nah. I wouldn’t take it”. I advised a friend earlier this year who was diagnosed with MS not to take the flu jab if a letter came through advising that she did. I told her why. She asked her nurse and was advised to take it. Which she did. Last week… I received a rather troubling call from her today. She had a massive relapse on Sunday. Just a week after taking the jab. Listening to her slurred speech brought tears to my eyes. What I could barely make out from that slur was her tellng me how she wished she’d listened to me. Before the relapse she was planning on going into town to a gig. Yep. That’s how okay she was. DO NOT TAKE THE FLU JAB. To date I remain flu-less. Relying instead on natural remedies like, heaps of Manouka honey, heaps of fresh garlic and raw onions, vitamins and if I do get a sniffle a huge mug of LemSip with crushed garlic. DO NOT TAKE THE FLU JAB.

It was my take on it - obviously my thought processes are completely different to other forum users. My feelings and opinions are just that - mine. They are no less valuable than anyone else’s. If nothing else they have given us a decent discussion.

Moyna and I have made our peace over this. For that I am very glad.


BTW - the only year I didn’t get a flu jab I caught the flu and was very poorly.

Well Fiona I can only say that many of us on this site have the flu jab without a problem.

I didn’t get it a few years back and got flu… along with my PPMS I was very ill. I was in bed for about 3 weeks and took 3 months to get over it. I wouldn’t want to go through that again. It was one of the only times since getting MS that I felt completely unable to cope and became extremely depressed.

I think it’s really up to the individual but lots of us with MS do prefer to have the jab and avoid getting flu.

Pat x

I am only newly diagnosed but each time I have had a relapse I have gone to bed feeling great only to wake up with relapse. The dayI lost my sight I was indoor tobogganing with no idea of what was to come. My doctor and MS nurse both advised flu jab but ultimately it was my descision. Many, many more people with MS have the jab with no relapse than not. Is there any actual proof it was the vaccine that triggered relapse or coincidence?

i Agree with you glad someone else has seen the light …i dont want to put unknown chemicals in my body but unfortuntetly the masses are brainwashed …my eldest son has been saying for years about it …maybe thats why all of my 4 children have autism …

This is pure and simple scaremongering!

I have been having the flu jab for years - being in one of the “at risk” - categories; long before I got MS.
Since then, I have NEVER had a relapse following a flue jab.

NHS Direct advise it for people with MS
NHS Choices do the same:

In America, the National MS Society recommend it:

For me, the choice is simple - for me, 'flu could well be terminal, and would certainly be worse than any relapse I have ever had.

For you, it must be your choice to have the jab, or not.

But, to tell people that they should not take a treatment which may well save their life is irresponsible in the extreme.


Totally agree Geoff. So little is really understood, let alone proved with ms, it will always be open to scaremongering and things to “blame”, we all need to take a step back before jumping to conclusions. We need to remember that quite a few of us have other medical conditions, which will have a bearing on our health decisions, some even more life threatening than ppms.

I have had the 'flu jab for the last two years and will continue to do so. Belinda who posts on here and lives in Oz failed to do so one year, caught 'flu which then developed into a serious dose of pneumonia. Teresa xx

Individual experiences are not good evidence. You and your friend may well have had those relapses even if you hadn’t had the flu jab. For example, my last really bad relapse started while I was in Antigua. So does being in Antigua cause relapses?? (Nope!)

Large scale studies show that the risks for MSers from flu are far greater than the risks from the vaccine.

A bit more individual experience though, fwiw(!)…

I’ve had the flu jab three years in a row. I haven’t had a relapse after any of them. Even better, two years ago when my family all became very ill with the flu, I was fine.

This sounds like the latest money saving exercise from the government.

They would save quite a bit of money from the jabs alone let alone the thousands they would save in care/treatment if there were more fatalities from the flu.

Fiona - dont forget we can all see your previous post history!

because you and your sister believe in ‘healing’ does not mean that you can post such an irresponsible statement on an ms forum.

To any new people reading this…

I missed my flu jab 2 years ago and i have never been so ill in all my life. It has taken me ages to get over it.



I have had the flu jab for the last few years and never had a problem, 1 year I didn’t take it, I was floored with the flu, trust me, I wont miss the flu jab again.

Vaccines are great for the herd population but I do believe some of us are more sensitive than others. I have a son with a dual diagnosis Downs Syndrome and autism. Autism was not present in his early years. His first few vacinnes went fine but when he was 3 he developed retinoblastoma (eye cancer) and had to have his right eye removed. He was given an implant and then a prothesis eye to go on top. His body was trying to reject the implant and he had continual eye infections - ooze literally pored out. In that first year he had it surgically replaced 3 times. He also had cold after cold. He had been assessed for school and was considered for mainstream as he was classed as excellant Downs by language therapists and educational pyschologists. Anyway a week before school he had the preschool booster. Three hours after the jab he was complaining of sore head so I gave him calpol. When I checked on him before going to bed he was burning up. I took him straight to casualty as he appeared to begoing in and out of consiousness. Anyway he spent 1 week in intensive care and we were told he had a virus. On coming home he was listless and weak and withdrawn. Then two weeks later he caught chicken pox from his sister. She had 2 spots and he was covered. Back into hospital we went for another week. Then by christmas Patrick had lost eye contact, his speech and was back in nappies. We were told his immune system had taken too much of a hit , eye, vacinne and CP. He has never recovered. Then 4 years ago I was advised to give him the flu jab and they gave it to me too as his carer. That night his temperature rose and he began for the first time to fit. Back into hospital we went and he was diagnosed with another virus. While in hospital with him I began to feel numb down my left side and weak down my right. Hot felt cold and vice-versa. My head was pounding and I felt like I hac the flu but no temperature. I developed l’hermittes and the fatigue was unbelievable. I was told I was suffering from severe stress. two months later we both felt better but I was left with weakness in my right leg. 3 years later this weakness was bad so I had an MRI with lesion/spinal atrophy on my cervical cord. Was tested for MS but LP was clear. I have been told that I either had an attack of ADEM that November or I am suffering from radiation myleopathy from treatment I had 22 years presiously! The doctors have advised that Patrick should not have another vacinne. I have not had one either. Despite all this my other children have all had jabs successfully but they are all very healthy. Doctors have informed me that the jabs are fine for 99% of the population. My twins (15) had boosters this week and are great.

Moyna x

The HERD population. Whilst I sympathise with your situation I am almost speechless at your use of the word ‘herd’ - and people who know me know that I am usually quite verbose.

I’m not sure if I’m angry or shocked or disgusted as being classified as one of a mob, a sheep, a pack or the Hoi Polloi but I do know that if it has caused this reaction from me there will be many more people thinking the same.

Please think of how others may feel before using such - frankly insulting - language.


Hi there, I was a bit surprised at the term Herd population, but I was curious and if you look up the term on Wikipedia, it is actually a collective name for the general population specifically relevant in use with immunisations so I’m now sure that Monya didn’t mean it in the way that it has been probably interpreted by some people. I’ve learnt something new today!!! Take care everyone Anne-Marie xx

like Anne Marie said its not offensive,i too was curios,so before i jumped to any conclusions ,i looked it up also.

I didn’t jump to any conclusions. I read the word in the way I would expect it to be used…but I also checked it out…and I’m afraid my original feelings about it’s use didn’t change.

I even went to the extent of reading my reply to my horrifically intelligent husband and, in the context the word was used, he was in full agreement with me.

I hope you know that I, of all people, would not want to cause any discord on the site but I felt impelled to reply. It is not something I do often.


As I said to Jaki I read the word in the way I would expect it to be used…but I also checked it out…and I’m afraid my original feelings about it’s use didn’t change.

Hoi Polloi is a term for the general population…also commoners, plebs and lower classes with the opposite being aristocracy, nobility and upper classes. In a perfect world we would have a classless society and I didn’t like the reminder that I was a lesser being.

I hope you know that I, of all people, would not want to cause any discord on the site but I felt impelled to reply. It is not something I do often.

Gosh I in NO way meant to cause any offence - I do assure you - hand on heart. I feel like running away and sticking my head in the sand. I really hate upsetting people. That phrase was actually used to me by my GP and I didnt jump to wrong conclusions I just accepted it meant the majority of the population. Please read it again and instead of herd put in “the majority of people”. I know terms can be upsetting as I always get upset when people refer to my son as a mongol. My husband keeps telling me that the people don’t mean it to be rude and have no intention of upsetting me. I have had to become thick skinned.

Thankyou Ann Marie and Jaki for sticking up for me.

Moyna x


Your husband is correct, I did not intend to upset you but rather to show how a simple comment can cause upset. I suppose it all depends in what context we would normally expect a particular comment to be used. I am a political being and that is how I read it - for me it was awful/horrific…I still can’t get quite the right word.

Don’t run away and hide. Oddly I didn’t think you meant it as anything other than the majority but I felt the need to say how harsh the comment came over to me…and I am usually very thick skinned.