Flu/Pneumonia vaccines??

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Mariepoms
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 61
   Posted 11/19/2007 5:59 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi All,
 
I have a question again.....I'm a Registered Nurse and work on a Oncology/Hospice unit.I do care for ''regular'' patients too.The elderly with pneumonia and other upper respiratory problems.Now,it is typical for all of Health care workers to get the Flu and pneumonia vaccines.My primary MD and Rhuematologist both suggested for me to have the vaccines.Espcially because i have Lupus.I do agree with them to a certain extent but wondered if anyone gets these vaccines and what reaction they had to them?? Is it safe to stimulate an already OVERACTIVE Immune system with vaccines?? When i asked my MD and Rheumy this question they looked at me as if i were NUTS.They basically said get the vaccines casue getting an active case of either the flu or pneumonia can be dangerous for a person with Lupus.
 
Just want to know if anyone gets these vaccines? and what the outcome has been? Did the Lupus symptoms get temporarily worse as your bodies were building a titer to the vaccines?? Just wondering what to expect....i have so many questions since being recently diagnosed with Lupus.
 
Thanks,Fran

okie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 2818
   Posted 11/19/2007 8:52 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi Fran, Yes I get the flu shot every year and pneumonia every 3 years. I have never had a problem. Your doctors are correct it would be much worse to get either of these viruses. As you know if you get this in your lungs your body will get rid of the illness unfortunately it won't stop there and it will start to attack your lungs. At least in theory. From somone who has lung problems I can tell you Please get the shots and keep up on them.

Don't worry about the questions hun, we all still run into questions and concerns. It's much better to ask if you have any doubts. Many people on the group do get the shots every year.

hugs


God Bless
Lupus like symptoms, with pbc symptoms,but of course that is subject to change in a moments notice! End Stage COPD w/CHF, Cervical Cancer survivor.  Osteoporosis,osteoarthritis
Prednisone,Plaquanil800mg,vicodin 3x5mg,Evista60mg, Effexor 150mg, HCTZ25/Triamterene37.5mg,Xanax x3 
Only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you: 1. Jesus Christ 2. The American G. I
 
 
 


hippimom2
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 5403
   Posted 11/19/2007 10:05 AM (GMT -7)   
Fran, my rheumy encourages me to get the vaccines too. I've had the flu shot every year without any problems, but I've never had the pneumonia shot. I still need to get my shot, so your post is a nice reminder.
Diagnosis:  UCTD (lupus) 2006; Raynauds 2006; Sjogren's 2006; lupus symptoms began 2003; CFS 1991; Mono 1985
Meds:  Plaquenil 400mg; Prednisone 5-10mg; Tramadol 100mg 3-4x daily; Doxepin 25-50mg; Prevacid; Steriod Cream and Mouth Rinse for tongue and mouth ulcers; Hydrocodone 5/500 prn for severe pain; Artificial tears

 

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Gidget^
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 171
   Posted 11/19/2007 7:22 PM (GMT -7)   

All my doctors have encouraged me to get both vaccines.  I've never had a reaction to them, and from what I understand most people don't get them anymore.  When they used the "live" virus years and years ago people would have mild symptoms of the flu but that just doesn't happen anymore.  If you get the flu within two weeks of getting the shot you would have gotten the flu anyways.  It takes two weeks for the vaccine to start working.

Also, because of the Lupus it's important to remember not to take the vaccine where you inhale in through your nose.  That vaccine is the "live" one and it will make a Lupus patient sick.

Good luck!


Gidget^
 
SLE 9/07, FMS '90's, Spinal Stenosis, Osteoarthritis, Sinus Tach, PVC's, Kidney Stones, RLS, Parotid Neurofibroma 8/04, Cervical Cancer 9/06
Clinoril, Toprol XL, Prozac, Zyrtec-D, Zocor, Vitamins B6 & B12, Folic Acid, Loratab ,Percoset, Toradol
 
There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.
 
 


redrose77
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 2573
   Posted 11/19/2007 10:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Ironic, I have been strongly discouraged from getting vacines but that may be because I become ill after every single one- high fever for a week and then flu like symptoms for a month. It also makes me feel worse as far as lupus activity goes. Since I have not gotten the flu unless I get the shot I was told just stay away from sick people whenever possible. I had the pnemonia shot in 2000 and continued to get pnemonia every single year until last year. Ironic I know. I also know my grandma is encouraged to get vaccines and she has lupus too. So the simple truth is that it depends on how your body reacts to the vaccines. Few people get as sick as I do though and since my half-sister almost died from vaccines it stands to reason I may be mildly allergic to something in them. I say get them since your doctors feel it is best. If you get bad sick then they will re-evaluate the situation. My husband will be getting one. Consider your cancer patients, they have weakened immune systems and some could die from the flu. Elderly patients can die from the flu. So can children. Heck you could die from flu or pnemonia depending on you disease activity and how hard you get hit by the bug. Please take the time to protect yourself. I wish I could, but the idea of dealing with being as sick as I get is not nice.
Dx:fibromyalgia 2002, systematic lupus 2005, rheumatoid arthritis 2006, PTSD 2007, multiple allergies 2005, migraine, compression fractures T11 & T12, Sjögren's, pregnant due May 2008
Tx: plaquenil, Enbrel, Celebrex, Darvocet, Singulair, Flexeril, Baby Asprin,Prednisone


Gidget^
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 171
   Posted 11/20/2007 9:06 AM (GMT -7)   

redrose,
Sounds like you're one of the odd ones when it comes to flu vaccines.  I'm one of the odd ones when it comes to tetanus vaccines.  I have a high fever for 3 or 4 days, my whole body has aches and pains for days and I get the chills.  Doctors have to have one or two patients that make them think a little more!  lol

 


Gidget^
 
SLE 9/07, FMS '90's, Spinal Stenosis, Osteoarthritis, Sinus Tach, PVC's, Kidney Stones, RLS, Parotid Neurofibroma 8/04, Cervical Cancer 9/06
Plaquenil, Toprol XL, Prozac, Zyrtec-D, Zocor, Vitamins B6 & B12, Folic Acid, Loratab ,Percoset, Toradol
 
There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.
 
 


redrose77
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 2573
   Posted 11/20/2007 4:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Well, for the first time in years it was suggested I look into getting the flu vaccine because even with how sick I get afterwards it might be less serious than getting the flu while pregnant and on 10mg pred. Dunno but I will ask the high risk doc tomorrow. I have weird reactions to a lot of things. But vaccines always give me a weird reaction, but at least I don't stop breathing and turn gray like my half sister.
Dx:fibromyalgia 2002, systematic lupus 2005, rheumatoid arthritis 2006, PTSD 2007, multiple allergies 2005, migraine, compression fractures T11 & T12, Sjögren's, pregnant due May 2008
Tx: plaquenil, Enbrel, Darvocet, Singulair, Flexeril, Baby Asprin,Prednisone


Gidget^
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 171
   Posted 11/20/2007 7:05 PM (GMT -7)   
redrose,
Yeah but that doesn't mean you won't have that type of a reaction this time.  My allergist once told me, if you are allergic to a drug in any way, never take it again.  He said that each time you have a reaction it's a little worse.  Can you imagine what your body looks like on the inside when you have hives on the outside?  And whatever they give you to combat the allergic reaction your sweet baby is also going to be absorbing that drug.  Not a good situation at all.  We're just going to put you in a big bubble with your computer and bon bons while you're preggers and not let any germs near you!!  Hugs!
Gidget^
 
SLE 9/07, FMS '90's, Spinal Stenosis, Osteoarthritis, Sinus Tach, PVC's, Kidney Stones, RLS, Parotid Neurofibroma 8/04, Cervical Cancer 9/06, Enchondroma on my skull 11/07
Plaquenil, Toprol XL, Prozac, Zyrtec-D, Zocor, Vitamins B6 & B12, Pepcid, Folic Acid, Loratab ,Percoset, Toradol
 
There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.
 
 


melissa2k12
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 39
   Posted 11/20/2007 8:38 PM (GMT -7)   
I just got my flu shot last week... I hate shots. My arm ached for a few days after and I had a slight fever. Other than that it was okay. Last year was pretty much the same thing. I was a little worried this time because I'm on some immunosuppresants but they said I had nothing to worry about because the virus was dead or some such thing.

Btw Gidget, I love the quote at the end of your signature. "There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face." It made me smile.
21 yrs old - Diagnosed SLE 2002, Raynaud's and Hives 2004, Lupus Nephritis 2007
cellcept, prednisone, plaquenil, zrytec, cozaar, spironolactone, nexium, furosemide, oscal + d


lupus fighter
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 50
   Posted 11/24/2007 3:23 PM (GMT -7)   
 I understand I  hate getting shots to. Since I have started getting vacinated I a have managed to not get sick and have to be hospitalized. I keep getting pneumonia. My doctors suggested that I have the shots as well. Last year i had the shots and still ended up sick. I think the shots can help but sometimes they may not work depending on what's going on in your body at the time. tongue
Loving Life 


Barbara Lee
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2003
Total Posts : 2889
   Posted 11/24/2007 6:14 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Fran:

I've had the pneumonia shot and only slightly felt odd for a couple of days. As for the flu shot I'm allergic to them according to the allergist. Every time I get a flu shot my are swells up like a grapefruit, the lump is vivid red and hot to the touch. I usually end up getting cellulites in my arm after getting the shot. So I've been told not to get the flu shot. I had the type A influenza two winter ago, I did end up in the hospital for 10 days. I'd recommend you get the flu shot as long as you're not allergic to it. I'm also allergic to the tetanus shot so I've not had that shot in 18 years, I sure hop I don't step on a mail or get bitten by a dog. Anyway, just wanted to pass on my experience with the shots.

Wishing you the best and I hope if you get the flu shot you don't have an adverse reactions from it.

Good luck,
Barbara
dx fibro, SLE, glaucoma, cateracts, bells palsy, depression, migraine headaches, gastreopaersis, chronic anemia, RA,MDS (Blood Cancer). Tons of meds.


mom46
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 8198
   Posted 11/24/2007 10:37 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi,

  I just got my flu shot last week and had the pheumonia shot 2 years ago. I have never had a reaction from either as well. I hope this goes well for you and prevents you from getting iether.

                                                                    Babs


 
Dx: Lupus,RLS,RA,Asthma,Fibro,Sjogren's,Raynaud's,Divertic, Stroke,Atherosclerosis,Seizures,Neuropathy,CAD
Meds:Methotrexate,plavix,aspirin,protonix,,zanaflex,xanax,
mirapex,advair,foxamax,Vytorin,folic acid,prednisone,lunesta,Chantrix,Tramadol,Nitro.
 
JOB 5:18 For he wounds, but he also binds up; he injures, but his hands also heal.


Audrey Ann
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 815
   Posted 11/25/2007 9:19 AM (GMT -7)   
Wow, I am happy to see this post! I had almost forgotten to get my flu shot this year. My rhuemy recommends both but I can see that these shots are not for everyone. Your rhuemy knows best!
Prayers,
Audrey Ann
 
Lupus and RA and LOTS of Medications!
 


 


RebeccaDestiny
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 11/27/2007 9:23 AM (GMT -7)   
I'm one of the odd ones too.. I got a flu shot last year, I got the pneumonia shot 2 years ago.. I still have gotten the pneumonia every year, like it's clock work.. and as far as the flu shot, it made everything ten times worse. The doctors aren't sure why. It's better to be safe then sorry though is what I say. When I get pneumonia I end up in the hospital for quite some time.. and as someone else said, you don't want to get sick with lupus and you certainly don't want to get ederly patients with cancer sick. I hope it all works out.
Diagnosis - SLE, FM, high blood pressure, A-fib, tachy cardia, renal stenosis.. Biliary C, seizures, hypoklemia, anemia, ovarian tumor, arthritis.
Medications - Depakote, ativan, lyrica, metrapolol, zantac.


caring
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 11/27/2007 5:21 PM (GMT -7)   

This is such an individual thing.  If I had not such a bad reaction to the Swine Flu vaccine way back in the mid to late 70s, which I believe triggered my CNS Lupus, I would probably get the flu vaccine (& pneumonia).  Since I had such bad luck with that, I have been too afraid to get the flu shots ever since then.  I realize I 'm risking becoming very ill by not taking the shots and I think you should do what you feel is right for you.  Sounds like many on these boards take the shots and do just fine with them.    Nan

 


CityGirl
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 239
   Posted 11/28/2007 11:04 PM (GMT -7)   

Interesting I just came across this topic as I had this discussion with my rheumy yesterday. 

I dont get a flu vaccine and I wont.  My dr. supports that belief.  She basically said that since I am on Plaq. and not another more aggressive immune suppressant drug she will support my choice.  She said the more aggressive immune suppressant drugs (ex. cytoxan) put you at a much greater risk but w/Plaq. she felt I wasnt putting myself at any more risk than I would be going to the grocery store and getting exposed that way.  I also just got an excellent set of labs and urine tests so I am very healthy right now aside from the lupus which is super managed at this point. 

Of course, if you work in a high risk environment or profession things would be different.  I should knock on wood but I have not had a flu in probably 7 or 8 years.  My husband and I were discussing that on the way home yesterday.   


susie h
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 11/29/2007 5:15 PM (GMT -7)   
I personally have not taken a flu shot since I was diagnosed. This is a decision I made after going through a round of allergy testing. I went to the allergist and had the full testing done, 80 something needle pricks to the upper arm. They gave me a very long list of my allergins and then formulated my shots. I was to take 2 a week at first, then down to one a week.

The testing had no ill effects on me, however, withn 30 minutes of my first allergy shot, I was SICK!
My throat got sore and by the next morning I was curled up in a ball with flu like symptoms, fever, chills, aches, etc.

I called my doc, who I had told at least 10 times that I have Lupus, they assured me this was just a freak thing and that the shots could have on no way caused this. Then I called a friend at the Lupus Foundation. She quoted to me something from the 80's discussing the fact that Lupus patients should not have live virus vacines of any type. So I have just decided to be safe rather than sorry when it comes to this, my docs have been supportive in this decision given the reaction to the allergy shot.
 Diagnosed w/ SLE March 2005, Fibromyalgia 2005, RA 2005, Degenerative Cartlidge Disease 2006
Current Meds: Methylprednisolone 4mg/ Plaquenil 200mg/ Simivstatin

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