Relapse of polymyalgia rheumatica following adjuvanted influenza vaccine: A case-based review

Margaret Bassendine, Simon Bridge

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Abstract

Polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) is the most common inflammatory rheumatological condition affecting individuals aged >50 years. There have been rare reports of PMR and other vasculitides developing within 3 months of influenza vaccination. Influenza is a major public health issue associatedwith seasonal increased mortality and intensified health care service use. Annual vaccination is the most effective intervention to prevent influenza, especially in elderly individuals. We report a severe “flare” of PMR in a 70-year-old patient after receiving the adjuvanted trivalent influenza vaccine, as recommended by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisations for this age group in theUK National Health Service in 2018-2019. The adverse event (AE) could be interpreted as the newly described autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA syndrome) as both PMR and ASIA display hyperactive immune responses. Caution is warranted in the use of vaccine adjuvants in patients with PMR with pre-existing imbalance of B and T cell homeostasis. Rare AEs are important to individuals, and personalized medicine means we should move away from “one size fits all” for vaccines, as well as for therapeutics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)37-40
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Journal of Rheumatology
Volume7
Issue number1
Early online date16 Dec 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jan 2020

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