Acute Disseminating Enchephalomyelitis (ADEM) After Flu Vaccination

by Lori
(Arizona, USA)

In October 2003, I received a flu shot. Ten days later, my eye-sight in my right eye went from 20/20 to 20/100. I felt extremely fatigued, the right side of my body hurt, I had uncontrollable shaking, and my right eye felt like someone had punched me.

I went to the hospital ER and had an MRI and spinal tap done. My MRI showed some small lesions on my brain stem (but they could not conclusively connect my lesions to the flu shot).

I went on to see a specialist at Barrows for possible Multiple Sclerosis (MS). I had MRIs for three years.

Finally, I was released from the Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis, and was labeled as having ADEM (Acute Disseminating Enchephalomyelitis). The ADEM stemmed from some "unknown" virus or vaccination.

I am in pain every day. I haven't gotten any better, but at least I haven't gotten any worse!

A lot of people don't believe I have anything wrong with me (especially the doctors) who saw me in the early stages.

I am almost constantly fatigued, have pain in my right eye (one lesion is on my optic nerve),and have had to stop teaching, although I do substitute teach occasionally.

My life has changed completely. Luckily, my kids are now 9 and 13, so they do a lot for themselves. My husband has been a rock, and is always there for me. My parents don't really believe I have anything "wrong" with me, and are always questioning why I keep complaining. That makes it hard, and makes me very mad and sad.

My advice is to always read the waiver you have to sign before you get a flu shot! And know the contents! I know I got Acute Disseminating Enchephalomyelitis from the flu vaccination in October of 2003 (in the U.S.)

For those of you struggling with a silent illness, hold on, help is on the way. SleepyDust helps me get through every day.

Be good to yourself, believe you can get better, laugh and take it one day at a time!

Best wishes


Comments for
Acute Disseminating Enchephalomyelitis (ADEM) After Flu Vaccination

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We certainly believe you!
by: Anonymous

Your parents and everyone else should certainly believe you. The very same thing happened to our son-in-law after a flu shot. Their family has been battling this disease for two years and they have two small children.
We will keep you in our prayers. Stay strong and hang in there!!

ME/ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and IV Gluthathione
by: Laura R

Have you considered IV Gluthathione? This is an antioxidant that scavenges for free radicals in your body. It literally gave me back my life after suffering from CFS. You need to get it from an alternative doctor. Within one week, I felt better, and now a year later, I am back to work and life, full steam with 2 kids and my own business. Good luck and God Bless...

Flu shot caused....
by: Renae

Hi Lori,

My daughter had a flu shot in 6th grade and within 1 1/2 weeks, she had the worst flu! She has never been the same since, and developed a severe syndrome. Six months after the shot, she had hour-long gagging spells and exploratory surgery found that her appendix had to be removed. The surgeon said this is common following a severe virus. After surgery, the gagging stopped, but she continues to have nausea as the primary symptom.

A year after the shot, June 2000, she got a woodtick bite, but the Western Blot test was negative. Now she is 20 years old. Last year she finally got a full diagnosis: CFIDS, FM, "Lymes Disease Stage 3 with 2 bacterial coinfections"!!!!, 2 serious viruses activated, Leaky Gut Syndrome, Dysbiosis, Sleep disorder, hormone imbalance, Celiac, numerous allergies, food & chemical sensitivities, nutritional deficiencies caused by all of these problems, etc.

Have you been tested for HHV6A? It can cause MS symptoms. I'm wondering if this is the cause of the brain lesions you have.

Healing prayers,

Interesting Insight
by: Sleepydust

Hi Lori

Thanks for your interesting insight into the flu vaccination.

Getting a flu jab certainly is a topical subject, especially at this time of year. And there is much confusion surrounding whether the flu jab is right for ME/ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome sufferers.

As with most things when it comes to ME/ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, it does seem to depend on the individual. But as always, I always recommend that people talk it over with their doctor. And of course, your tip (to read through the waiver) is certainly a must!

Wishing you the best in health Lori, and thanks again for sharing your experiences.



P.S. For those of you who would like to learn more about the different opinions surrounding the flu vaccination when you have ME/ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, click here...

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