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ME associated with flu, but not vaccine

Dolphin

Senior Member
Messages
17,567
Chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) is associated with pandemic influenza infection, but not with an adjuvanted pandemic influenza vaccine.

Vaccine. 2015 Oct 13. pii: S0264-410X(15)01433-4. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2015.10.018. [Epub ahead of print]

Magnus P1, Gunnes N2, Tveito K3, Bakken IJ2, Ghaderi S2, Stoltenberg C2, Hornig M4, Lipkin WI4, Trogstad L2, Håberg SE2.

Author information

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) is associated to infections and it has been suggested that vaccination can trigger the disease.

However, little is known about the specific association between clinically manifest influenza/influenza vaccine and CFS/ME.

As part of a registry surveillance of adverse effects after mass vaccination in Norway during the 2009 influenza A (H1N1) pandemic, we had the opportunity to estimate and contrast the risk of CFS/ME after infection and vaccination.

METHODS:

Using the unique personal identification number assigned to everybody who is registered as resident in Norway, we followed the complete Norwegian population as of October 1, 2009, through national registries of vaccination, communicable diseases, primary health, and specialist health care until December 31, 2012.

Hazard ratios (HRs) of CFS/ME, as diagnosed in the specialist health care services (diagnostic code G93.3 in the International Classification of Diseases, Version 10), after influenza infection and/or vaccination were estimated using Cox proportional-hazards regression.

RESULTS:

The incidence rate of CFS/ME was 2.08 per 100,000 person-months at risk.

The adjusted HR of CFS/ME after pandemic vaccination was 0.97 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.91-1.04), while it was 2.04 (95% CI: 1.78-2.33) after being diagnosed with influenza infection during the peak pandemic period.

CONCLUSIONS:

Pandemic influenza A (H1N1) infection was associated with a more than two-fold increased risk of CFS/ME.

We found no indication of increased risk of CFS/ME after vaccination.

Our findings are consistent with a model whereby symptomatic infection, rather than antigenic stimulation may trigger CFS/ME.

Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

KEYWORDS:
Chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME); Cohort; Influenza vaccine; Pandemic influenza

PMID:

26475444

[PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
 

SOC

Senior Member
Messages
7,849
Interesting. Both daughter and I got much worse after getting H1N1 in the 2009 pandemic. We already had ME, so it wasn't the root cause, but H1N1 made it much worse.
 

Dolphin

Senior Member
Messages
17,567
A previous paper:

J Clin Pathol. 2010 Feb;63(2):184-5. doi: 10.1136/jcp.2009.071944. Epub 2009 Oct 26.
A case of chronic fatigue syndrome triggered by influenza H1N1 (swine influenza).
Vallings R1.
Author information

Abstract
This case report describes an adolescent boy who was diagnosed as suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome 5 months after infection with H1N1 influenza.

PMID: 19858526
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
 

snowathlete

Senior Member
Messages
5,374
Location
UK
Could be significant. Good to see this being looked at.

"We found no indication of increased risk of CFS/ME after vaccination."

But if flu is associated with increased risk then shouldn't it follow that vaccination should demonstrate lowered risk?
 

barbc56

Senior Member
Messages
3,657
I would be interested in how many people get ME in the general population and whether this corresponds to people to the number who get a vaccine.

Sometimes a side effect which people think is from a vaccination when stastically a certain percentage of the population would get the same "side effect" without the vaccine.

I just got my flu shot which I should have had in September. I can't even imagine getting the flu on top of this.

Barb

Opps, misread the report. Looks like they did this?
 

Sushi

Moderation Resource Albuquerque
Messages
19,934
Location
Albuquerque
Interesting! I had a really bad case of H3N2 that kept me in bed for 3 months. This was a long time ago but was right before I started having ME/CFS symptoms. It gets confusing though because I was also bitten by numerous ticks around the same time.
 

alex3619

Senior Member
Messages
13,810
Location
Logan, Queensland, Australia
Could be significant. Good to see this being looked at.

"We found no indication of increased risk of CFS/ME after vaccination."

But if flu is associated with increased risk then shouldn't it follow that vaccination should demonstrate lowered risk?
It was, but only marginal. It depends how this was done though. We need to read the paper.
 

Vic

Messages
137
HAH. Yeah right. The key here is the "per 100,000 person-months," which I think means they counted how often CFS/ME onset within a month of influenza diagnosis or vaccine shot. It takes time for the muscular damage of vaccines to snowball and eventually lead to CFS/ME, usually much longer than 1 month, up to years.

Anyone able to find how how exactly they did gathered the data and did their calculations?
 

Hip

Senior Member
Messages
17,790
The key here is the "per 100,000 person-months," which I think means they counted how often CFS/ME onset within a month of influenza diagnosis or vaccine shot.

It does not mean that.

They state that they followed the population for 39 months (1 Oct 2009 to 31 Dec 2012). During this period they found that the overall incidence of ME/CFS was approximately 2 cases per 100,000 person-months.

So this means, for example, if you tracked 1000 people for 100 months (= around 8 years), you would expect 2 people out of the 1000 on average to come down with ME/CFS during that time.



It takes time for the muscular damage of vaccines to snowball and eventually lead to CFS/ME, usually much longer than 1 month, up to years.

Never heard such a thing.
 
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Vic

Messages
137
It does not mean that.

They state that they followed the population for 39 months (1 Oct 2009 to 31 Dec 2012). During this period they found that the overall incidence of ME/CFS was approximately 2 cases per 100,000 person-months.

So this means, for example, if you tracked 1000 people for 100 months (= around 8 years), you would expect 2 people out of the 1000 on average to come down with ME/CFS during that time.
Yeah I know it means that. I was wondering why they did, because I'm trying to figure out how they did their analysis. It says "The adjusted HR of CFS/ME after pandemic vaccination was 0.97." "after pandemic vaccination" sounds like they used a time period, during/after a "pandemic." And how did they "adjust" it? Did they count the number of vaccines used? Basically, there are lots of ways their analysis could be faulty, but I have no idea what they might be if I don't know their exact methodology.

Never heard such a thing.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4246686/
That's one general mechanism behind it. Basically, they contribute to altering the mechanics of the shoulder joints. Over time other stress (sedentarism/injuries/other stuff) build on that alteration until one shoulder goes in one direction and the other shoulder goes in another, creating a wringing effect on the torso, neck, spine, skull, and down into the hips and below. Like twisting the water out of a towel... a metaphor.
 

Snow Leopard

Hibernating
Messages
5,902
Location
South Australia
These complete nation cohort studies are interesting and there should be more studies like this. The problem is that it only works for vaccinations that are not used by the large majority of the population. So the possibilities are the influenza vaccines and other vaccines when they are first adopted (eg the HPV vaccine).

The results show clear evidence of a post-infectious syndrome associated with influenza infections.

However a major limitation of this study is that in addition to confirmed laboratory testing of H1N1 in some subjects, they also assumed this in others:
We assume that the majority of subjects with influenza-like symptoms who received an R80 code in the period October–December 2009 were infected with the H1N1 influenza virus rather than another respiratory pathogen. No other influenza virus was known to be circulating in the population at this time.

There was evidence of some people vaccinated who had an R80 code and this was similarly associated with a CFS diagnosis (HR:1.88 CI:1.46–2.42), compared to those who were not vaccinated, but had an infection.
It is arguable that some of these cases could be as a consequence of the vaccine, but these were a small minority of the overall number of cases (63 vs several thousand). With this data, it is impossible to tell between cases where the vaccine was simply ineffective vs cases where the vaccine might have triggered flu-like symptoms, and the patient received a diagnosis for an infection and later a CFS diagnosis.

Is there a claim among people on this forum that the squalene-adjuvant based H1N1 vaccination triggered their illness? Example trade name: Pandemrix https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pandemrix

The overall ME/CFS incidence rate is interesting and this is perhaps the most interesting part of this study. 2.08 per 100,000 person-months or 0.00025 person-years or 0.6% of the nation over 25 years. (this is an extrapolation and is not statistically valid).

But if flu is associated with increased risk then shouldn't it follow that vaccination should demonstrate lowered risk?

That is a great question.

Unless influenza was the predomnant/most common trigger for this illness (study suggests the virus is a trigger for ~4% of cases), this study lacks the statistical power to demonstrate a reduction in risk. Side note: the hazard ratios were calculated using the Not infected/not vaccinated group as the baseline.

Here is the data, I hope this makes things a little clearer:

Magnus et al. said:
Table 3.
Incidence rates and hazards ratios (HRs) of CFS/ME, with associated 95% confidence intervals (CIs), according to exposure to pandemic vaccination and influenza infection. Follow-up time from October 1, 2009, through December 31, 2012, for 4822,377 residents of Norway born 1899–2009.


Vaccinated - Infected - No. of person-months at risk - No. of cases - Incidence rate* - Adjusted (HR 95% CI)**

No No 107,475,182 2165 2.01 1.0
Yes No 67,985,240 1345 1.98 0.98 0.91–1.05
No Yes 3032,843 164 5.41 2.08 1.78–2.44
Yes Yes 1,389,917 63 4.53 1.88 1.46–2.42

* Number of new cases per 100,000 person-months at risk.
** Stratified Cox analysis with separate baseline hazards functions for each year-of-birth category and adjusted for sex
.
 
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Forbin

Senior Member
Messages
966
The incidence rate of CFS/ME was 2.08 per 100,000 person-months at risk.

I may be doing this wrong, but, in a population of 319 million (US), I'm getting 6,635 new cases per month, or 79,622 per year in the US.

319,000,000 / 100,000 * 2.08 *12 (months per year) = 79,622.

[Of course, the reported incidence rate is for Norway, so it may not be identical for other locales.]
 
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msf

Senior Member
Messages
3,650
Thanks Snow Leopard, I was just about to ask how they they knew that the patients had the flu. Do you mean that there was some confirmatory testing for H1N1 for those who subsequently developed ME?

http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/219557-differential

I notice enteroviruses are mentioned. Hip will be happy! Also cytomeglovirus for those who think it was the herpes viruses what done it.
 

Marco

Grrrrrrr!
Messages
2,386
Location
Near Cognac, France
So how does this two-fold plus increase in incidence post H1N1 stack up with a stochastic autoimmune mechanism. Perhaps the first reporting of symptoms associated with infection are the 'unmasking' of the pre-existing autoimmune process but any common infection should have the same effect? Unless H1N1 symptoms are particularly severe leading to increased or early reporting of ME/CFS onset?

An alternative explanation consistent with an autoimmune etiology may involve transient BBB permeability during severe infection?
 

Snow Leopard

Hibernating
Messages
5,902
Location
South Australia
Thanks Snow Leopard, I was just about to ask how they they knew that the patients had the flu. Do you mean that there was some confirmatory testing for H1N1 for those who subsequently developed ME?

What I said before might be a little confusing. To clarify, there were two sources of data on infection.

Magnus et al. said:
Information on infection with the H1N1 influenza virus was obtained from two different sources. One source was from consultations in primary health care and emergency outpatient clinics, where all consultations must be reported to obtain reimbursement. Diagnoses are reported with codes from the International Classification of Primary Care, Second Edition (ICPC-2). The code for influenza-like illness (R80) was taken as a measure of H1N1 infection when the diagnosis was made during the pandemic peak period (October 1 through December 31, 2009). We considered R80 codes outside this period as insufficiently specific to be used as evidence for exposure to H1N1, as other infections may have caused similar symptoms. The other source of information on influenza infection was registrations in the Norwegian Surveillance System for Communicable Diseases of a confirmed antigenic test for H1N1 as reported from microbiology laboratories. The majority of these infections were reported during the peak period. However, due to the high specificity of these tests, reports from outside the peak period were included.
 
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msf

Senior Member
Messages
3,650
I don´t think the first category is sufficiently specific, and I would like to see the number of ME patients in each category.