On the 15th of March, I had my first CoVid vaccine and I have to say that I couldn’t have predicted the experience. I went in there with the expectation this would be similar to the flu jab. I was wrong on so many levels. I thought I would share with you my experience because I am interested to see if any of this is a familiar story.
The Usual Flu Jab Experience
As I am comparing the two experiences it makes sense to explain what I was expecting to happen, to highlight the differences. When I have had the annual seasonal flu jab the injection itself has never been a big deal. Unlike blood tests which can be traumatic. I briefly describe the experience of these in my Fibromyalgia and Blood Tests post.
Once I have had the injection the site itself usually becomes sore within an hour or so and then by the end of the first day my whole arm will ache. I find it difficult to sleep for a couple of nights, because if I roll onto that arm it hurts, and wakes me up. By about the third-day things start improving and by day four to five I am back to whatever level of normal is happening at that time. So basically it is a mild inconvenience.
Having the CoVid Vaccine
When we went for the jab I was not particularly worried, as explained above the actual needles for injections have never been a problem for me. Although I was out and about, which is very rare these days. The social distancing was managed well and everyone was wearing masks. They had a couple of cubicles where two people from the same household could go in together so Michael and I were facing each other. I went first to get it done and as expected the physical action of the jab was no big deal. However, by the time they had done Michael’s jab, it was a very different matter.
The Blood Test Effect
All I can describe is I suddenly started feeling faint. I was getting hot and dripping wet. The nurse looked across and asked if I was ok and I had to answer that no, I wasn’t. I was drip-white at this point apparently. The nurse spoke to one of her colleagues and had a bit of a panic because someone else was on the “fainter bed” so they decided to put me in a wheelchair and move me near the door and the fresh air. As well as getting me some cold water.
It may just be me reading something into it, but they didn’t seem at all surprised that I nearly fainted, I almost got the impressions that it was a regular occurrence. As mentioned, if this had been a blood test none of it would surprise me, but this was completely new ground for an injection. I wonder if it is one of the side effects they play down so they don’t put people off getting it. Naturally, even if I knew this may happen I would still have chosen to have it because let’s face it, a short fainting period is nothing compared to potentially getting hospitalised (or worse) if I was to catch the virus.
A Sore Arm
Once I was back home and feeling recovered from the fainting experience, it felt like things were more like the standard flu jab experience. My arm became sore (in actual fact is was sore before I even left the venue, as I needed to stay for a further fifteen minutes after having the fainting spell). Other than the arm though, for the rest of that day I seemed ok, I was able to come and sit at the desk and do some work.
The Following Days
The next day was not too bad, I didn’t have many spoons, which I had allowed for, but I managed to come through to the office for a short period of time and do the daily newsletter, but not very much else. Michael brought me my meals upstairs because doing the stairs felt like too much. I was not too bad though in the scheme of things and expected that I would just have a rough day and would feel a bit better the day after.
A Regrettable Shower
On Wednesday I decided to get a shower in the morning (I usually have one every other day when I am doing ok) because my last one was on Monday morning before the CoVid Vaccine. I was really shocked by how hard this was, my spoon level was through the floor and the level of ache from lifting my arms up to shampoo my hair was a complete surprise. By the time I had finished and got myself out I was seriously exhausted and actually started to feel a little faint.
We also noticed that I had a rash travelling from the injection site up and over my shoulder and covering about a quarter of my back. I have read about the CoVid arm as a known side effect, but this doesn’t mention spreading beyond the arm area. The rash felt a little like shingles did, but not as bad. We decided to keep an eye on it and contact the doctor if it got any worse.
Once I had recovered from feeling a little faint and I had got myself dried and dressed I tried to come through to the office and at least do my daily newsletter, but less than half an hour after coming through I had to return back to the bedroom and lie down. Surely this must be the worst day?
Once I had taken to my bed, little did I expect that I would primarily remain there for over a week? It is fair to say that this is the worst flare-up I have experienced to date. Even when I have had the sort of migraine-style headaches that all I can do is sleep it off, I usually get up later in the day when it has eased. With the exception of going to the toilet next door I barely left my bed for about a week. About a week after it appeared the rash faded, as it never got any worse I didn’t trouble the doctor with it.
It is now over two weeks since the jab and although I have been able to come through to the computer for a short period of time some days (not every day) I am still eating all my meals upstairs.
On Monday, I managed to come downstairs to stand on the doorstep for a while to catch up with my neighbour, and I thought this may be the beginning of me using the whole house. But alas, once I had finished our conversation I was completely done in. Michael had to give me a boost up the stairs and I was once again back in the bedroom.
The CoVid Vaccine or a coincidence?
I have heard from others with Fibromyalgia who have had one or two really bad days after their vaccine, but I have not at this point heard from anyone else who has been affected to this level. It is possible that I was just due to having my worst ever flare-up but I’m not sure if I believe in this level of coincidence?
With regard to the second vaccine, I was recommended as I left the centre to ask to lie down to get the next one. Hopefully, this will stop me from having the same feint experience. I have read that the second dose can cause worse side effects so I guess I will find out in June what this has in store for me, and maybe discover if this flare-up is brought on by the jab or really is a complete coincidence.
I am slowly on the mend and I’m glad I have managed to write this post for you (in more than one sitting), but I really hope by Sunday I will be able to have my Easter dinner downstairs with Michael. Because I can’t tell you how strange it feels eating separately. I suppose the slight silver lining to all this is I have caught up with lots of binge-watching. I’m hoping by next week to restart my daily newsletter again. Once I am back on track I will try and get ahead with them then when I am hit by the next flare-up I won’t leave you stranded.
Spread the Word
If you have found this post interesting or useful I would be grateful if you would share it on your preferred social media platforms then others will find it too. If you have had a similar experience I’d love to hear from you in the comments. It will help us to build up a bigger picture of the relationship between the Covid Vaccine and Fibro Flare-ups.