While Rheumatoid Arthritis Guy is moving into a warmer season, he knows that most of you are heading into autumn and winter. In addition to the leaves changing colors and pumpkin spice coffee being served in every coffee shop, the colder weather also brings in increased risk of getting a cold or a flu. (And let’s not even get started on what it does to arthritic joints.)
A few days ago, Stephanie left the following comment on Rheumatoid Guy’s Facebook fan page.
I had a question, do you get flu shots? And are you going to get the swine flu shot? I never get them but now with all the immune suppressing drugs we all take , I wanted to get others feedback on what their doctor or how they personally felt about getting a flu shot.
I have not taken flu vaccinations of any type…but I might just be in the minority.
I would recommend taking a look at the following links. Jo-Ann Colburn from LivingRheum has collected and continues to collect a lot of great information on the topic of rheumatoid arthritis and the flu. (This is also a great resource for many other issues related to rheumatoid arthritis.)
Rheumatoid Arthritis Resources for Living with RA
If you live in the UK, you might also be interested in signing the following petition.
We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to Fund GP’s to make available flu vaccinations for Rheumatoid Arthritis Sufferers.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is a chronic auto-immune disease. Sufferers are not currently entitled to a free flu vaccination if they are under retirement age. After retirement age they are called in automatically and funded.
Doctors do not stock enough vaccine to provide their rheumatoid patients with a vaccination as the vaccines are government funded.
This also applies to receipt of the swine flu vaccine when available.
This petition is particularly relevant to anyone who takes prescription drugs to control their rheumatoid arthritis.
As a group with an auto-immune disease we should be treated the same as other groups with auto-immune diseases who are entitled to the vaccination.