Toronto mother says doctors found torn tendon after getting flu shot at pharmacy

Click to play video: 'Toronto mom alleges flu shot caused painful arm injury' Toronto mom alleges flu shot caused painful arm injury
Annie Coulson says she got her flu vaccine four weeks ago, and it caused a tear in her tendon resulting in pain and limited mobility. Marianne Dimain reports – Nov 24, 2016

A Toronto mother of three says her arm was injured after getting the flu shot four weeks ago and it has caused her pain and limited mobility.

Annie Coulson said she got her vaccine at a Fortino’s in Hamilton and since then, she alleges she has been in pain throughout the day and night. She said she believes it’s directly linked to how the flu shot was administered.

”I went to the doctor and showed her where it had been administered and her reaction was, ‘Oh my gosh, that’s way too high,’” said Coulson.

READ MORE: ‘Tis the season to get your flu shot

”So then I had an ultrasound and they concluded that there was a tear in one of my tendons.”

Beverly Wright, the director of marketing for Fortino’s Director of Marketing, told Global News in a statement that the company is investigating the incident and that their patients’ well-being is the company’s “top priority.”

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”The well-being of our patients is our top priority and we want to assure customers that all pharmacists who administer flu shots have undertaken Certified Injection Training,” Wright wrote.

READ MORE: What Canadians should expect from the 2016-17 flu season

Public Health Ontario said there were 678 adverse events following immunization out of the approximately 9,000,000 publicly funded vaccine doses that were administered in Ontario last year. A majority of the incidents were mild in nature and included things like sore arms and rashes.

The health agency also said four in every 1,000,000 doses were classified as serious events, which caused hospitalization or death.

”Vaccine safety is taken very seriously and we continually monitor it and follow up when we’re aware of adverse events,” said Dr. Shelley Deeks, medical director of immunization and vaccine-preventable diseases with Public Health Ontario.

READ MORE: Mississauga mom urging Ontarians to learn from tragedy and get flu shots

Lianne Sharvit, a personal injury and insurance lawyer with Devry Smith Frank LLP, spoke about the flu shot process generally and said before signing a waiver form in advance of receiving a vaccination, you should seek professional advice and know your rights.

”If you suffer an injury as a result of the negligence of someone else, then you potentially have a cause of action against them if you can prove that they were in fact negligent,” said Sharvit.

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Meanwhile, Coulson said she has lost time and has to pay for physiotherapy. However, she said she believes vaccinations are important.

READ MORE: Busting 4 common myths about the flu shot

”I feel like I’m being a good citizen getting my flu shot,” said Coulson.

”But perhaps more training for the people administering it because this was an avoidable injury.”

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