First Dose of Pfizer on 08/13/21
Q: What was your life like before you got the vaccine?
I was active and loved life, I was a Surf Lifesaver at our local club and enjoyed open water swimming, the beach and being outdoors. I loved my job, and spending time with my family, but we had also weathered almost 2 years of rolling lockdowns and restrictions - 262 days of limited social contact, and almost as many days of our children were not allowed to attend school and see their friends. As a city we were all tired, businesses were going bankrupt and our spirits were crushed. Our Premier announced that the only way out to freedom was to get vaccinated, threatening the unvaccinated with further restrictions, loss of freedom and no access to medical treatment. So I did what I thought was right for my community.
Q: What was your reaction, symptoms, & timeline?
Getting the vaccine was normal, waited my 15mins and went home. When I woke up the next morning I felt very dizzy, and tired I was not able to bend down with out a head spin, and of course the usual very sore arm. This feeling persisted for 9 days, I was able to work but felt really off, went to bed really early, and wasn't able to help out with housework or cooking. On day 9 I was driving my daughter home from school when I had a vertigo attack everything started moving, my vision went dark and my heart was pounding. I made it home safely and went straight to bed. The next morning I felt ok and attempted to work but the computer screen was making me feel dizzy, my eyes were really sore and I had a continual feeling of vertigo. I went to the doctor who told me I had an ear infection. My ear was a little sore but he did not prescribe antibiotics only anti-dizzy medication. The medication he gave me did not work, the vertigo was getting worse and I had recurring heart palpitations, and was having recurring attacks that made me collapse it did not matter if I was standing, sitting or lying down. I felt like I was on a boat in a bad storm, or a drunk feeling. On day 11 I went to emergency for the first time and blacked out in reception, my HR, Oxygen, and blood pressure were all normal. When I was seen by the Doctor, he noted my eye sensitivity and slow reflexes and scheduled a brain CT scan, The CT scan was normal I was discharged and told it is vestibular issues and told to see a physio. On day 12 I saw the physio, he ruled out vestibular issue as the attacks were not triggered by head movement, my eyes were getting increasingly more sensitive to light and I experienced pain when looking to the far edge of my vision, this also triggered attacks. I had mild ear pain and tinnitus had started. On day 13 I collapsed while sitting I had heart palpitations, chest pain, I could not slow down my heart down, I was feeling dizzy, my vision was going black, I struggled to breath, I was in and out of consciousness, I had pins and needles in arms and legs. My daughter called the ambulance and I was admitted to hospital for 7 days. While in hospital I had extreme fatigue, light sensitivity, jerky eye tracking, slow reflexes, an unusual walking gait, tinnitus, ear pain, extreme pain at the base of my spine, headache which spread over the left side of my face. Muscle weakness, I could no longer walk unassisted, muscle tremors, pins and needles, feeling of numbness in my limbs, and I experienced 4 hourly “vertigo attacks” or what I now believe to be adrenaline surges. On day 16 while in CCU after my first shower my legs went purple and my HR went up to 150bpm. I had multiple blood tests, brain CT and MRI scans, blood pressure tests and echo-cardiogram and was connected to a halter monitor in CCU for 8 hours (only while I was lying down) I was discharged with a doctors note of "anxiety" and a recommendation that I needed to be on anti-depressants for my "panic attacks". For the next 3 weeks my home doctor GP, refused to provide me with any additional support, due to the diagnosis of "anxiety" even though I went for an in person appointment and collapsed in his waiting room, I met with him every week and told him I was still very unwell and needed help as I continued to struggle at home with vertigo, collapsing, heart palpitations, chest pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, exercise intolerance, tinnitus, muscle tremors, burning sensation in my leg, food aversion, weight loss, unable to control my temperature (continually cold hands/feet and not able to know when I was overheating) and increasing intensity of night time internal vibrations that filled my whole body with a continual feeling of shaking, but he just wanted to "wait and see". Through my research and contact with online Facebook vaccine support groups, POTS kept recurring and a post vaccine symptom. I started tracking and recording my HR and took photos of the blood pooling in my legs and hands, I also developed petriche (red blood dot rash on my arms). I became my own advocate, I knew 100% that this was absolutely not caused by anxiety, I was not anxious, I was not panicked there was no "trigger" for these attacks this was a physical reaction. I pushed him to provide me for a referral to a second cardiologist. The referral letter basically said "pretty sure it is anxiety, but can you just check her over" 7 weeks post v - I collapsed again in the cardiologist waiting room, and when I had recovered I was connected to ECG and blood pressure monitor, they got a resting HR and a standing HR and within 10mins diagnosed me with POTS like symptoms. I cried when the doctor told me, that they had finally found something wrong, after so many tests that were clear! I was admitted to hospital and monitored for 3 days and provided with heart medication to low my HR, BP and control the compression of my blood vessels 11 weeks post v - The mild chest pain I had been experiencing for weeks got much worse, felt like a squeezing and pushing sensation to the left of my chest. Admitted back into hospital for more tests, a gastroscopy identified oesophagus damage due to digestion issues.
Q: What is your life like now, after getting the vaccine?
I have not been able to return to work, I have not driven a car, I can not walk further than the letter box, I am not able to assist with housework or cooking, shopping, go to the park with my children, walk the dog, drive down to the beach for a walk or a swim. I cry most days, at everything I can no longer do it is so easy to take your health for granted until you don't have it. But I am not accepting this is my new normal and will do everything in my power to get back to swimming, walking and being active. But it is going to take a long time.
Q: Share your experience with any medical care and any diagnoses you have received:
I have seen general doctors, physiotherapists, neurologists, immunologists, and cardiologists and they have done so many tests on me. Apart from the last test all tests have come back clear.
I have been diagnosed with:
ear infection - false
vestibular issues - false
panic/anxiety attacks - false
postural tachycardia hypertension
sympathetic system dysfunction
Q: Was your reaction reported, and what was the response?
Called the Government run 1800 number service, a very lovely lady answered my call, took my details checked if I was having a heart attack and told me to call my GP. She also told me she was getting 100's of calls every week just like mine. I do not believe this call was logged or reported. I self reported to TGA and SafeVac - no response.
I also requested my GP submit all my medical records to VicSIS and had a consultation with them. They recommended I don't get a second vaccine at this time but when I do it should be Astra Zeneca. They were not able to provide any support or guidance on my symptoms.
Q: Is there anything that has helped, and have your symptoms improved?
Antihistamines. Appropriate heart medication to control high heart rate.
Q: What do you wish others knew?
I wish others knew vaccine injuries are real, we are real people and we are suffering while being silenced. The doctors don't know how to fix us because they are not allowed to talk about vaccine injuries. But we need help, we want answers, but most importantly we want to feel better again.