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Doctor insights on: Is It Normal For Your Arm To Swell Up After Getting The Gardasil Shot

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Dr. David Schleimer
1,498 doctors shared insights

Swelling (Definition)

Swelling is the enlargement of organs, skin, or other body parts. It is caused by a buildup of fluid in the tissues. The extra fluid can lead to a rapid increase in weight over a short period of time (days to weeks). Swelling can occur all over the body (generalized) or only in one part ...Read more


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I recently got a HPV or gardasil shot in my left arm. It has now been two days and symptoms of a reaction have developed. Please help!

I recently got a HPV or gardasil shot in my left arm. It has now been two days and symptoms of a reaction have developed. Please help!

Local reaction: Reactions at the site of injection occur with some frequency with almost any vaccine. If this continues to enlarge, be red and tender or if you have any symptoms such as fever or chills, see a doctor asap. ...Read more

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I got the Gardasil shot a month ago and my arm still has moderate pain with limited mobility. Should I be concerned and should I visit a doctor?

I got the Gardasil shot a month ago and my arm still has moderate pain with limited mobility. Should I be concerned and should I visit a doctor?

Very unusual: Injection site pain can occur with any shot, including Gardasil and other vaccines, but should clear up in a few days; unusual to last this long. What does "limited mobility" mean? Because it hurts to move the arm? Conceivably you have a bacterial infection in that area. See the doctor who gave the shot. (If it was first Gardasil dose and nothing serious is found, it's time for your second dose.) ...Read more

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I had my last gardasil vaccine 2 months ago. No complications. Now i have a lump on my arm that hurts to touch and move my arm. Should i be concerned?

I had my last gardasil vaccine 2 months ago. No complications. Now i have a lump on my arm that hurts to touch and move my arm. Should i be concerned?

Infection?: If the lump is exactly at the site of the vaccine injection, maybe it is a delayed infection or other reaction to the shot. This sort of thing is rare but could happen. If the lump is anywhere else, probably it has nothing to do with the vaccine. See a doctor soon if the area continues to enlarge or becomes more tender; if any redness; or if you have fever. ...Read more

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Got the gardisil shot 2 days ago and my arm still hurts today...Is this normal?

Got the gardisil shot 2 days ago and my arm still hurts today...Is this normal?

Sometimes: It happens sometimes, should get better and better by next week. Try to keep moving around but no heavy lifting, take over the counter pain med, gentle massage, contact the doctor if not improving next week. It doesn't mean will happen with other gardisil shots, so be sure to complete series. Sore arm is better than procedures and treatments for cervical cancer which the shot helps prevent. ...Read more

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When getting the gardasil shot, do you have to get the shots within a certain period of time?

Yes: There is a schedule for the Gardasil vaccine. You get the first dose, then get the second dose 2 months after the first dose, and finally the third dose 6 months after the first dose. 3 shots total. ...Read more

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I never had my last gardasil shot. Can I still get it?

I never had my last gardasil shot. Can I still get it?

Depends: The vaccine is likely effective for anyone with a mature and competent immune system.Your listed age is 43, and that should apply. However, the original FDA approval was for age 9-26, and many health insurers will not cover this outside this age range.It is an expensive vaccine, requiring more than 20 years to develop and assemble the data to get FDA approval. ...Read more

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What happens if you only get one gardasil shot and refuse the other two?

What happens if you only get one gardasil shot and refuse the other two?

Partial protection: Because the research studies were done with 3 doses of gardasil, it is not known how much antibody protection, and for how many years, a person would have with just one shot. There should be some protection. New studies are being done, especially for developing countries (due to the high cost of the vaccine), to see if just one or two doses are adequately protective. ...Read more

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Can the age at which you get the gardasil shot affect what kind of complications you might get?

Can the age at which you get the gardasil shot affect what kind of complications you might get?

No: The age that the vaccine is given does not appear to affect the side effects. At this point , I have read that over 35 million doses have been administered with no discernible issues. ...Read more

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