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1 21st December 05:54
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Posts: 1
Default Flu Shots: Should you or shouldn't you? (antibodies)

I am posting this web site just in case anyone wants any information on flu
shots and Lyme. This is the season for flu shots and as for me I wont take
them. The last one I took I was sick for weeks and somehow felt it really
triggered a lot of my symptoms. Just my opinion on flu shots and lyme.

Flu Shots: Should you or shouldn't you?

Flu vaccine pose a problem for may people with CFS, FM and others whose immune
systems are in various states of abnormal functioning.

Compiled by Melissa Kaplan, 2003

Some of us who have various CND get extremely ill after getting a vaccine.
Others experience little effect, or get a few mild symptoms which pass in a
matter of days. The following articles have appeared through the years in the
fall issues of CFIDS and FM publications.

Flu Shots: Should PWC be given flu shots or immunizations?
Charles Lapp, MD, CFIDS Association of America, 1995
For the most part, we at the Cheney Clinic believe it is unnecessary and
possibly even risky to take immunizations. Patients with CFIDS already have
markedly unregulated immune systems. Any given germ or virus that enters the
system is essentially neutralized and destroyed right away. This is why CFIDS
patients are apt to remark that it seems they haven't had a cold or flu since
they had this disease.

Patients with CFIDS frequently don't sero convert, which means their immune
systems are so dysfunctional that it does not react to the vaccine by making
antibodies. A CFIDS patient may take all the risks and discomforts of receiving
the immunization only to find that it does not take.

Lastly, patients with upregulated immune systems are felt to be at higher risk
for adverse reactions to vaccines and occasionaly, we hear of someone who gets
extremely ill or relapses after an immunization.

At the international conferences in Albany, October 1992, these same questions
were raised and many reseachers could recall severe reactions or relapses to
seemingly harmless vaccines such as measles, tetanus, and especially Hepatitis
B. On the other hand, immunotherapies, such as allergy shots, seem to be
tolerated very well.

Persons who need the flu vaccine are senior citizens and those with chronic
debilitating illnesses such as severe diabetes, emphysema, and serious heart
disorders. We advise our patients that unless you absolutely need a
vaccination, it is best to pass it up.


Influenza Vaccinations
Charles Lapp MD, 2002

Due to reports of severe relapses following immunization, flu vaccinations are
generally NOT recommended to persons with CFS or FM unless (1) you have taken
flu vaccinations in the past and tolerated them well or (2) you have a serious
chronic illness (such as emphysema, diabetes, or heart disease) in addition to
CFS or FM. Not only do some patients relapse after flu vaccination, but many do
not sero-convert (develop antibodies) to the vaccination. Thus you may suffer
the discomfort of a "shot" plus the misery of a relapse, and not even develop
immunity. These are the current recommendations from the Hunter-Hopkins Center:
If you have tolerated it in the past, you may take a flu vaccination this year
if you wish. Recognize, however, that you may not develop protective
antibodies. If you are elderly, infirm, or have a serious chronic illness for
which vaccination is recommended, weigh the risk of immunization against the
risk of contracting the flu. If you don't take the flu vaccination,
"antibiotics" are available to fight influenza. These should be started within
72 hours of onset in order to reduce the severity and the length of your
illness. These drugs include:

Symmetrel (amantidine): 100mg bid for 5 days for influenza A
Flumadene (ramantidine): 100mg bid for 5 days for influenza A
Relenza (an inhaler): 2 puffs bid for 5 days for influenza A or B
Tamiflu: 1 tab bid for 5 days for influenza A or B

There have been anecdotal reports of relapses being triggered by Hepatitis B
and Rubella vaccines as well, but pneumococcal, H. influenza, and tetanus seem
to be tolerated satisfactorily.


Comments Posted on Lyme Disease email lists

It's not supposed to be given to people who are taking antibiotics.

For those people not on antibiotics, the flu vaccine is probably no worse than
for the general population. Tamiflu is an oral neuraminidase inhibitor that
blocks entry of the influenza virus into cells. It can be started within 24
hours of developing flu symptoms, and it generally shortens and attenuates the
symptoms of the flu so that they are manageable. It's taken as two pills a day
for 5 days, and has no side effects that I have seen. There is a liquid form
for kids.

I am sure that this anecdote does not describe everyone's experience but I had
a friend who staved off her lyme symptoms quite well, was functioning in real
life with a job and all - until receiving a flu shot. Then hell broke loose and
she became one of the sickest chronic lyme sufferers that I have known. She
definitely blames the flu shot for triggering her symptoms. This is not the
case with all Lyme people, obviously, and I do know that there are some Lymies
that have no problems with the shots and swear by them.
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2 21st December 05:55
External User
Posts: 1
Default Flu Shots: Should you or shouldn't you? (asthma)

x-no-archive: yes

In article <>,
(Sinaj101) writes:

My Lyme doc is an infec. diseases doc, too, and he's very pro flu shot for his
CFS and Lyme patients. I haven't had any bad reactions to them so far, and the
one year I got flu with it, it was very much milder in terms of the URI

I have a friend with CFS and asthma who always gets a slight fever and some
aches after her flu shot, but gets it anyway because she's so prone to severe
lung and bronchial infections.

I know there are a lot of CFS specialists with theories about why flu shots
would be bad for us, but so far, my experience and that of those I know is that
it's a net plus, with no significant ill effects.

Just MHO.

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3 25th January 11:55
External User
Posts: 1
Default Flu Shots: Should you or shouldn't you? (arthritis)

I have had a flu shot with virtually no symptoms, may all have to
do with your health at the time. I found out I had Lyme after receiving a
tetanus shot. Apparantly it "overloaded" my system. I was told it was likely
that I had lyme for quite some time, undiagnosed. I have been treated for
arthritis, thyroid problems, and other various things since I was young. The
doctor seems to feel that my lyme was somewhat in a remission stage, but when I
had the tetanus shot, it was to much all at once for my immune system to
handle, and the lyme took over radically. As with most lymies, it's a long
story, but that's my experience. Carol
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4 26th January 04:08
External User
Posts: 1
Default Flu Shots: Should you or shouldn't you?

Flu shots are ridiculous because they only protect against one strain
when there are many every season. It's an unnecessary added burden to an
already overburdened immune system in most cases. Just wash your hands a
lot and stay away from sick people.

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