Prevnar 13 vaccination provoking causalgia

by Karen
(Chicago, Illinois)

Prevnar 13 vaccination provoking causalgia is rare but it's a nasty affliction.

On June 10, 2015 I received a Prevnar 13 injection. By June 22 (My birthday) I was in pain. Started when I noticed that I could not sleep on my left arm due to pain. It was not gradual but one night I was aching and by the next night it was impossible to put my left hand under my head due to pain. I didn't seek care until I could no longer stand it, always thinking it will get better(approx. 6 months later.

Beginning of December, 2015 I'm faced with a daughter who is expecting the end of January 2016 and I am in no way able to pick her baby up out of a crib. That was another reason I went to the chiropractor. I have now been 14 times and I do see a small difference in now I can raise my arm to wash or do my hair but when my arm is bent at all and brought back then it's horrendous.

In the mornings my arm is extremely weak and my 3 fingers are bent downward but this only lasts approx. 10 minutes and appears to get better after that. I have been experiencing aches at the injection site of where the Prevnar 13 was administered. The aches go to my elbow and down to my fingers. I think you could say like spasms? My question is this: Could the Prevanr 13 injection have caused this or is it just coincidental?

Flu shots have never done this to me but I now need a whooping cough injection due to the new baby coming but I am scared to death to get it (Right arm of course, not affected arm.) I will get the shot to protect my soon to be grand baby but I just hope it won't affect my right arm as then I would be affected in both arms.

Hello Karen,
Indeed a distressing letter; what is good is that with chiropractic it appears that you are improving.

I wouldn't have the whooping cough vaccination; the risk of side effects is fairly high, and the chance of you getting whooping cough and giving it to the mite are minuscule.

My recommendation is that you see a specialist to consider whether you have causalgia, also known as reflex sympathetic dystrophy, or its new name Complex Regional Pain syndrome.

What makes me think of causalgia is the "3 fingers are bent downwards".

Causalgia a poorly understood condition in which the autonomic nerve supply to the blood vessels to a part, is affected by trauma, even minor trauma like a vaccination needle, to another part.

Whether it was the trauma of the vaccination, or the contents of the vaccination is subject to debate. In any event, it means you are at high risk of having two arms affected.

I've only treated a few cases over the years, so I'm no expert, but as you are experiencing, chiropractic does seem to help because it addresses the nervous system. Deep massage of your fingers and your whole arm appears to help too.

I hope this contributes; there's a lot on the web about causalgia. Read up on the subject and see if it fits.

I'd stick with your chiropractor seeing it's helping. If indeed you do have causalgia, medicine is likely to recommend some fairly heavy medication, with yet more side effects. I wish you wisdom in the decisions ahead that must be made.

Let me know when and if the diagnosis is make.

Enjoy your grandchild and relax about passing all manner of serious afflictions to the child.

Dr B

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