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Cathy Williamson

First Dose of Astra Zeneca on 02/04/21

United Kingdom


Q: What was your life like before you got the vaccine?

Usual busy, working person.

2 jobs, walking dogs etc

In a nutshell... normal!


Q: What was your reaction, symptoms, & timeline?

30 mins after jab uncontrollable itching all over my body, palpitations, chest pain, shortness breath, had to sleep sitting up, after few days felt a bit better but tingling in feet and hands starting over next couple weeks, then started randomly falling over (38 falls over 2 weeks and covered in bruises), 3 trips to A&E, as major major back pain set in, (I've had 2 kids but never felt pain like this before,) had MRI scan on 2nd & 3rd visits, and even thought I was walking wobbly and kept falling (looked drunk) was just given even more pain killers and sent home to the point I thought I was flying! I was starting to lose feeling from elbows down and chest down, and no feeling at all in my back (was scalded by burst hot water bottle and didn't even know, and still have the scarring 9 months later) had to be moved in wheelchairs as no feeling in legs arms etc.


Finally was rushed via ambulance to hospital all this in a timeline of 30 mins - 5 weeks after jab.


Q: What is your life like now, after getting the vaccine?

Nightmare, no help from anywhere just discharged from hospital 2 x 20 min visits from physio (most of which taken up in paperwork) and just left for family to care for me. 9 months later I can walk with a walking frame, and have just regained full use of my hands and fingers, I still suffer from backpain, depression, headaches, pins/needles, memory lapses, tiredness but always waking up in night, still feet/toes paralyzed, but I do feel incredibly lucky, as lots of people were worse than me and unfortunately some didn't make it I just want my old life back!!!


Q: Share your experience with any medical care and any diagnoses you have received:

Was diagnosed with Guillain barre syndrome and given IVIG treatment which stopped the paralysis traveling any further up my body.


Q: Was your reaction reported, and what was the response?

Reported and no response just an email to say it was received.


Q: Is there anything that has helped, and have your symptoms improved?

Keeping warm, massage, and avoid stress at all costs as this makes symptoms worse.


Q: What do you wish others knew?

I wish others knew that paralysis could be a side effect of the vaccine as there's no 1000's of us suffering.


#WeWantToBeHeard #RealNotRare

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