On 10th March 2021 I had the Astra Zeneca vaccination.  On Sunday 14th March, I started limping as my right leg was a little swollen. I thought I must have twisted or jarred it whilst out walking the dogs. A few days later I was having difficulty walking as my ankles felt like they were seizing up, my leg was now over 3cm bigger than my left one. Then it spread to my shoulders. I felt like the tin man from Oz rusting up. By now my GP had taken bloods and checked for clots, all clear, could not explain what was happening but to keep an eye on it. I was away at a family funeral and was in so much pain I could not get into a bath to have a shower. On the way home my partner took me to Raigmore hospital. I saw 2 A& E consultants that were of differing opinions. One thought it was vaccine related, the other insisted “no, could not have been that!” I underwent blood tests and was given a follow-up appointment in Wick a couple of days later. I underwent more blood tests and a scan for blood clots as my leg was up again then I was sent home to return a few days later to get the results.

On my return to Caithness General the consultant told me that I had reactive arthritis due to Astra Zeneca & was being kept in to receive treatment. He was leaving the hospital that day to return to Raigmore but handed me over to a different consultant in Acute medicine.  It was this doctor that registered me with as being reactive to the Astra Zeneca.  I was put on a high dose of steroids, dihydrocodeine, paracetamol & naproxen and I started to improve immediately. I was allowed home & continued to improve. I came off the steroids – all fine then I went to rheumatology and was told that I did not have arthritis so could stop the naproxen. I immediately started to seize again and the pain returned.
Now I am back on naproxen with tramadol as and when I need it for a disease I do not have. Some days I am good with little to no pain, others I struggle to get out of bed. I moved 2 years ago and the GPs I have now, do not seem to accept that the vaccine did this to me. No one can give me answers and no one seems to care. They just tell me to keep taking the tablets. Had several visits to both Raigmore & Wick for scans, xrays etc in between. All clear.

Before this I was reasonably fit & and healthy; walked dogs & worked full time. Now I can’t walk very far so have to do shorter dog walks and can only work part time due to fatigue and pain. I can get confused and lose the thread of what I am saying halfway through speaking. I forget easily and struggle to remember words, names etc. This is enormously frustrating for me & my partner of 22 years.  Am waiting for an MRI on my shoulder at the moment as i do not have full movement anymore.