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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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Is it normal for your arm to swell up after getting the gardasil shot?

Is it normal for your arm to swell up after getting the gardasil shot?

Yes: This is part of the side effects reported with this shot. If severe and red the see your primary care doctor.

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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.

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My daughter is 13. She received her 3rd gardasil shot about 2wks ago. She has a knot in her arm, diarrhea & cramps.?

My daughter is 13. She received her 3rd gardasil shot about 2wks ago. She has a knot in her arm, diarrhea & cramps.?

Injection infection: It sounds like she has an infection at the site of injection and is overdue for a visit to the doctor.

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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.)

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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.

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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?

Usually, yes.: Any vaccine can make your muscles sore in the area -- a sharp pointy object has been stuck into them, and fluid is put in a space where there hadn't been any. Massaging the area, using warm compresses, and doing easy arm exercises helps to work 'kinks' out. Gardasil protects against a virus that causes cancer, so the benefits outweigh any side effects. If area reddens or swells, see your doctor.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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How do I go about convincing teens to get gardasil shots?

How do I go about convincing teens to get gardasil shots?

A no-brainer: A vaccine that prevents a potentially fatal cancer, and that keeps you from transmitting the cause of that cancer to others...Who's wouldn't want that?

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Can I get the gardasil shot if I'm pregnant?

Can I get the gardasil shot if I'm pregnant?

Yes and no: There is no evidence at this time of fetal harm from gardasil, and there probably never will be as it's not a live vaccine, but the manufacturer recommends waiting until after you deliver before starting the series.

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How soon after receiving a gardasil shot is it okay to get drunk?

How soon after receiving a gardasil shot is it okay to get drunk?

Binge drinking: Binge drinking is unsafe in any condition. No contraindications between alcohol and hpv vaccine. Drink safely and responsibly. Drinking for the sake of getting drunk is unsafe.

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How old do you have to be to get the Gardasil shot for HPV? I'm only 19.

How old do you have to be to get the Gardasil shot for HPV? I'm only 19.

Here are. ..: Gardasil (for 6, 11, 16 &18 strains) has been recommended for males of 9-15 yrs and for females of 9-26 yrs as proved in June 2006 in the US.

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If I am exposed to HPV after one month of my first shot of gardasil, will I get hpv?

Possible: The protection is best after all three injections. However, even one injection could infer some protection.

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Can you still get HPV before getting the 3rd Gardasil shot? Do the shots work even if TA more time than the recommended wait time between them?

Can you still get HPV before getting the 3rd Gardasil shot? Do the shots work even if TA more time than the recommended wait time between them?

Yes: Keep in mind the vaccine covers certain strains and it is possible to get a strain that is not covered, or you may not respond to the vaccine as well. The time frame is fine as long as it is longer than recommended

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Are there any interactions between Gardasil and alcohol? Does alcohol reduce Gardasil's effectiveness? Can I drink the same day I get the last shot?

Are there any interactions between Gardasil and alcohol? Does alcohol reduce Gardasil's effectiveness? Can I drink the same day I get the last shot?

Not that I know of: Should be fine, I don't know of any vaccines that interact w/alcohol. That being said, make sure to drink responsibly!

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Is it normal to have late period when having a gardasil shot?

Is it normal to have late period when having a gardasil shot?

No relationship: Just because the Gardasil shot prevents infection by viruses that cause genital warts and some cervical cancers doesn't mean Gardasil has any effects on menstrual periods, pms, sex, pregnancy, etc... The vaccine has no relationship to menstrual periods. The shot is given in the arm, and the antibodies are made by the immune system to offer protection throughout the body, not just at the genitals.

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Why can't women over 26 get the gardasil shot?

Why can't women over 26 get the gardasil shot?

May help, coverage?: The target group for the Gardasil shot are those never exposed to hpv, as early as 9yo. The benefit may remain for anyone at any age who is sexually active, but insurance plans may only cover age groups listed as the target groups by the cdc or council on immunization practices. The vaccine is expensive, in excess of $150/dose before it gets into my office so some balk at paying out of pocket.