Published January 14, 2015
Seventeen Canadians became sick after receiving the H1N1 flu vaccine, the Toronto Sun reported.
Four people have Guillan-Barre syndrome, and 13 people had anaphylaxis, an allergic reaction characterized by symptoms of anaphylactic shock, rapid heartbeat, itching and/or difficulty breathing, said Andrew Morrison, spokesman for the Ministry of Health and Long Term Care.
One recipient of the vaccine, Donna Hartlen, is a 39-year-old mother who is suffering from Guillan-Barre syndrome. The right side of Hartlen’s face is now paralyzed and she is not able to chew food.
It is not known why Guillan-Barre syndrome, in which the body's immune system attacks part of the peripheral nervous system, affects some people, but not others.
Health Canada pulled a batch of the H1N1 vaccine, which was produced by GlaxoSmithKline, when it appeared to produce higher rates of allergic reactions compared to other batches.