Because I am not an idiot I am a big fan of vaccines, one of the greatest creations of humanity – but that doesn’t mean they lack drawbacks.
The flu vaccine is particularly iffy, because influenza is a multi-faceted disease that changes shape every year. The long advance lead time on creating vaccines means that sometimes the vaccine isn’t terribly effective, as happened two winters ago. (The CDC has a good summary of how flu vaccines are designed and made here.) I get a flu shot every year because it’s more likely to help than not, and because I am edging close to what are euphemistically called the Golden Years. When I do get sick it lasts longer and hurts more, so there’s more value to avoiding illness.
But there’s another concern about flu vaccines: Some people say they can give you the flu, or cause flu-like symptoms. This seems a logical fear, since a vaccine works by tricking the body’s immune system into reacting by putting “dead” flu virus or bits of live viruses into our body, and “having the flu” is mostly the result of the immune system’s reaction to the virus.
I got a flu shot Tuesday at work, and on Wednesday I felt like crap: I was shivering when the house wasn’t cold, I was ache-y, and really tired. It felt like I had a mild case of flu. I slept 10 hours last night and feel better today, but it sure seems like the flu shot gave me a bit of flu.
The CDC says no, pointing to randomized trials in which people give placebo flu shots had the same amount of flu-like symptoms. As further evidence on the “no” side, I have gotten flu shots for years and never had a similar response before. And Tuesday was primary election day so I worked late after getting the shot, driving my long commute home at 1 a.m. whereas usually I’m in bed by 10. The sickness could easily have been my body reacting to fatigue or job stress – I don’t shrug that stuff off the way I used to.
But doggone it, it sure felt like correlation (flu shot one day, flu-ish the next) implies causation. If I was suspicious of vaccines, that could easily lock in an anti-vax certainty to the point that no evidence would ever overcome it. Personal experience trumps outside data, every time.
I’m not suspicious of vaccines because the evidence points that way, but even so it feels weird that I got sick. I admit I’ll be a little bit nervous next year when I get my flu shot.
I don’t take them, did in the 80s was sick for 8 weeks, and self employed it was disastrous. Haven’t had a flu since 2008. You undermine your immune system with all these artificial stimulus. And who knows what is in that needle. Requires a level of trust that is not warranted these days.
You do not “undermine your immune system” by taking vaccines. Not true, not a fact, not a real thing. That’s like saying you undermine your digestive system by eating food.
Wait, so you’re comparing vaccines to food?
The person administering the shot should ask you beforehand if you’ve got any symptoms of illness, and if so they should not give you the shot that day. In your case, it was probably the fatigue which was already bringing something on, even before you had the shot.
I felt fine at the time I got the shot. But yeah, it was the fatigue probably.
So I got m flu shot this year on a Friday. Late that night I had sweats and chills. During the night I started vomiting and I was achy all over. I had a terrible headache, and was sweaty and feverish he next day. This lasted through Sunday morning. Could it have been m flu shot – or could I have picked up something from he Doctor’s office the day I was getting the shot… after all, because SICK people go to he doctor…
I think you forget the fact that the vaccines purpose is to activate the immune systems response for that virus, which in turn can make you feel like crap for awhile while it goes into overdrive fighting the ‘supposed’ invaders. This in turn creates antibodies that will continue to look for that ‘invader’ in the near future. But the action of the false virus does create a immune response which can make you feel nasty for a bit as it does its work. A little nasty now can prevent a WHOLE lot of real nasty later.
That is interesting because yesterday I too felt flu-y. But no shot. Just tired and ache-y and the wrong temperature. Weather? Allergies? Fatigue? Mostly I “blame” kids back in school picking up the round bugs from other kids, and dropping them at the store on their way home when they unusually stopped to get a treat. They left those round bugs them there for the first time all summer which infected my square-bug resistant self.
This has happened to me TWICE. The first time was 3 years ago, got the shot late afternoon and by early evening I had a high fever, chills, achy, flu feeling. Went to bed early and by the middle of the next day I felt better. Two years ago I ended up with the flu in September before the flu shot was available, I was miserably sick for about 10 days. After I recovered my doctor recommended I still get the shot to cover against other strains since I am susceptible to pneumonia. Again, I got the shot mid-day and by early evening I had a high fever, chills, aches and felt just like I did when I had the flu a few weeks prior. Again, by the middle of the next day I was feeling better. Having the flu was miserable, but I’m always a bit nervous about getting the shot now. I don’t believe it is a coincidence and I’m scared about a more serious side effect.
I get flu shot end of August, every year the kids get sick first week of September!!!! By November everyone is sick! It takes two weeks for the shot to help!!
LOl, you lost all credibility after “Because I am not an idiot I am a big fan of vaccines”.