PMRGCAuk
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flu jab or not?

Hi,

Its silly oclock again and i am wide awake being driven nuts with cramp so i thought i would use the time to catch up here and ask a question.

Having just had a really bad cold i wondered if i should be getting a flu jag? I've been on pred for 2 years now for pmr and gca and never has the doc suggested a flu jag so its probably not available as i dont have any other illness and although i often feel like i am 90 i am just 56.

Are most people offered the jag ? what are the pros and cons?

thanks in advance of you advice.

27 Replies
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I am up too xx for years up , down it’s awful cos you never catch up on your sleep xx

I am going for the flu jab x had it before so touch wood it will be ok again x

I am starting new tablets soon them that begin with a M x and only take yhem once a week x

I am on 50mg of pred just came down yesterday from 60mg so hopefully when they start and I keep coming down it might help my sleep xx

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What is a flu jab?

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It is the influenza vaccine. I am having mine today, on doc’s advice. It is not a live vaccine so it can’t actually give you the flu, but it does tend to make you feel a bit grotty for a few days. The doc says better that ‘though than getting the flu on top of having PMR.

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Yep, had that jab and no problems (better than PMR+FLU - that would be very uggg).

(PMR only and on 7.5mg - actully stuck on 7.5mg for about 4 months now).....

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Only you can decide (or your doctor).

I had mine yesterday (in advance of beginning Mx treatment). I was somewhat anxious as I had avoided it in previous years when I was working in an environment where I was offered one.

It hardly hurt and I didn't have any after effects. I wondered whether my 13mg Pred dose kept any effects at bay.

I am waiting for the pharmacie to receive the pneumo vacs and hope that is as painless.

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I'm having my flu jab today. I had it last year and had no problems. The previous year( my first with PMR) I wasn't offered the vaccine and unfortunately I got flu when I was at about 8mg. I have never felt as Ill in my life. Along with the usual high temperature / shivering etc I had the most frightening and awful nausea which lasted for several hours during the night when my body wasn't coping at all. I never want to experience that again.

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Hi There

I had my flu jab on Monday with no side affects. I have been having it for years though due to working in the NHS.

Good luck

Cat

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I have been told that there are two types of vaccine this year, a more stronger one for the over 65. I am a bit worried about having the stronger one for over 65 , I think I’ll stick to the original one.Has anyone got any views on this.

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You'd be better to start a new thread with the question - this probably won't be seen by many people on the forum now as it is an old thread.

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It is not a stronger one for over 65s it is a different one. Under 65s have the Japanese flu one and and the over 65s have the three Australian flu ones. Ideally we should have all of them, but it seems they started manufacturing late.

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The 4strain is for up to 65, the three strain has a added Adjuvant which they say makes this jab stronger which is for the over 65. What I want to know is why can’t ihave the normal one that people under 65 although I am over this age. I have been refused this by my doctors , I have been to boots and have been refused , I even offered to pay still refused, they all say I can have the over 65 . Government guild lines I don’t want this. Why can’t I have the normal one I have always had. I should have the right to say what goes in my body, I have the right to choose andnot be told. This is the first year this has been offered in England for the over 65 it’s new and I don’t want it. Any helpful information on how I can have the normal 4 strain flue. This is not right. Where is our freedom of to rights .

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Neither is the normal one you have always had. These are for the flu variants they think will be coming to U.K. 2018 to 2019.

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I do realise that each year flue strains are different, but why take out one flue strain and add a adjuvant in the one for the over 65, and then told this is the only one you can have, there is no choice as I said I don’t want this one. There has never been anything like this happen before, what right have they got to refuse you a flue jab that you want.

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The reason they have boosted up the Australian flu vaccine for the over 65s is that it did not work last year so the new one has a booster to prolong the vaccine and to help older people who tend to have more limited immune systems. Last year they failed to have the booster which is important if you have a not so good immune system, such as people with pred and double the number of people died than usual. Personally I would have liked to have the fourth vaccine included too which is for the Japanese flu, this is the only one included for younger people, but does not include the Australian flu types. Neither are ideal. What should have happened is the Japanese flu should have been included in the over 65 version but was excluded probably due to errors, licensing, costs and economics rather than any scientific reason. Ideally everyone should have the same quadrivalent version, but it seems costs and economics prevailed. It seems this was available in a lot of other countries but U.K. messed up again.

The over 65 version is available for certain under 65s as well including 18-64s with long term health conditions, pregnant women, young children over 2, carers, health and social workers, morbidly obese people, those with some respiratory problems and also those with long term immune suppressed problems. This should include anyone on long term pred for PMR for example. So even if you were 40 you would still have been entitled to the over 65 version, rather than the Japanese version only.

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I have GCA and polymyalgia and am on 7mg pred do my doc have me the flu jag no problem and because I am on less than 20mg he also have me the shingles jag.

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So long as you are over the cold then yes. You will be asked by the nurse if you have had a cold within the last week.

I had mine on Wed, been having it for years (was my hubby’s carer) both post, during and pre GCA no problem!

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Hi Marie, on another subject...Have you ever heard of anyone having issues with the Actemra because they alas I take hormone replacement? I had the very sore breast and letdown reflex around my 3rd infusion...bad enough that I quit the hormones cold turkey. Now, 7 weeks later I am a mess as far as the hormone withdrawal. Rheumy says no connection to the Actemra...but I know a tight bra when I feel one during the infusion!

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My doctor was adamant about it. One being that I have PMR and on a biologic and secondly that I work in education. Had Mine last week. My doctor advised me not to taper for two weeks after the injection. I had no side effects. Also gave me a feeling of protection 😊

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I have the flu jab, was told to have this by my rheumatologist and GP, and have been fine. This year I did get the full flu symptoms by that evening but woke up to it all gone. I am 69. Think all should have it with this illness, particularly when on the high doses, I'm down to 3mg and will always have it

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The flu jab is recommended, especially with our lower immune system.

Each year the flu jab is different and will or will not save you from certain strains of flu. A couple of weeks ago I had my shot at the same time as my Actemra infusion and then I had “flu” for a week....first time I have ever had a reaction. My advice: get the shot, expect the no reaction....be prepared to maybe not feel great for a week😊

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You fall into a priority category to have the flu jag ( are you Scottish?) you have a compromised immune system and flu would hit you hard. It isn't a live vaccine so there isn't really a downside. Having said that I felt seedy for 24 hours after mine but Paracetamol helped.

Try a Magnesium supplement, it's supposed to help prevent cramp.

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Sheffield Jane interested to see magnesium may help with cramps. I've had cramp in legs quite often recently, more so since I've gone down to 12.5 of pred, but compared to other people's problems, feel I can't complain. Will look for magnesium supplement though Thanks

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You can also get sprays and you can put Epsom Salts in the bath, even just a deep footbath will help.

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I'll try that. Thank you again!

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Anyone on pred should be considered at risk and offered the jag (shot, injection, vaccination depending on your nationality). But it isn't particularly expensive so even if you have a stingy GP I'd have it.

I had real full-blown flu once - I have no desire to have it again and even if the flu vaccine doesn't cover all eventualities it reduces the chances of getting it. The one year my husband didn't have his shot (because he had bronchitis at the time and then forgot) he got flu which progressed to pneumonia - which led to a rather edgy 6 months until the patch of fluid on his lung had gone away...

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I had flu for 2000 new year, never before and not since. I rarely take anything but of late have picked up too much so time I got flu vacs. Doctor probably won't complain but if he does Boots do it so that's easy.

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Hi

Had mine last week and so far so good. Mine give at work although nurse had not heard of PMR and had to check if I could be given it xx

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