Did The H1N1 Shot Cause People to Develop Narcolepsy?

First Published: November 24, 2015 Last updated: April 1st, 2018 Written by Ian Stephens Estimated Reading Time: 11 minutes 3 comments

Over the years, the idea of narcolepsy has become more serious. It’s been an illness that at one stage was deemed to be quite funny by the masses; people falling asleep every time they got sexually aroused, or every time they ate too much sugar, became a common thing to hear.

Although once seen as an extremely rare condition, narcolepsy has become more common as time has gone on and this makes it harder than ever for someone to get the help that they need in becoming more comfortable with themselves.

The stigma of the illness makes that hard to do – especially when it happens in public. Thankfully, a public consensus has changed narcolepsy from being a source of fun to a source of danger, always to be looked out for and always to be followed closely. Thigls is probably why the conspiracy of outbreaks among the use of the H1N1 flu jab has become such a prominent and popular story in the last few years.

Man with Narcolepsy

The use of this instrument in 2009 to help combat a flu virus was extremely important to help cut down on the damage the flu was causing. However, the argument is that by using the flu jab to help get rid of the flu, they developed narcolepsy in many patients.

Today, we want to look deeper into this issue and see if we can find something that helps get to the bottom of this particular conspiracy theory. If it was to be the case, it’s important that its recognized and found out as the development of narcolepsy through an administered, tested drug is something that would obviously be grounds for immediate concern across the globe – was this really a massive European-wide cover-up within medical departments?

The Story

So, the main idea behind this whole scenario is that in 2009 a minor flu epidemic broke out. The flu is obviously a dangerous and serious problem and to be dealt with and contained, flu jabs were needed to help preventing others from catching this radical illness and avoiding a massive amount of illness, absence and various other problems associated with it.

That being the case, thousands were given the treatment. The problems it whilst the treatment certainly killed off the potential for these people to develop the flu and have to suffer with this, they were likely to be suffering with a new problem come the end of their treatment. Of those who were treated, more than 1,300 people were caught up in the cross-fire and wound up suffering from narcolepsy. Naturally, this is a serious problem and it caused a huge amount of consternation at the time.

Narcolepsy is a condition that cannot be cured, and provides a deeply and debilitating condition that leaves people feeling weak and lethargic during the day with an overpowering urge to sleep, as well as muscle weakness when they go through a period such as laughter and/or anger. These situations, then, have left more than 1,300 people with no way back and although compensation might be nice, many of these people are unable to work in a normal job due to the problems they suffer from.

Created by GlaxoSmithKline, this accusation has been confirmed and the company have admitted that this was the case. With compensation pending across each case and people rising up every day to try and claim back what they had removed from them, the real problem with this story is the fact that those were troubled by the illness still have no idea how it came to be.

About Pandemrix

The drug that was used to help cure this problem was an influenza vaccine known as Pandemrix. Otherwise known as H1N1, this form of flu – “swine flu” was provided to many people who suffered from the illness. Patented in 2006 – before the outbreak began – the drug that was administered to patients was used to help prevent the onset of the illness in the first place.

It was one of the very first vaccines of its kind to be introduced and then approved by the European Commission in September 2009. Taken under consideration by the European Medicines Agency, the EMEA, it was approved for usage for those who had been suffering from the H1N1 influenza pandemic.

This pandemic spread across Europe at a frightening pace, and was seen as a genuine concern for European nations within no time at all. Pandemrix was created using old H5N1 strain of vaccinations, ensuring that it followed the same testing and the same ideology as other logically created flu vaccinations. The item itself came equipped with immunologic adjuvant AS03 which provided the body with some vital requirements, such as Vitamin E.

By doing this it soon became so much easier for the body to look after itself properly, but the end result was the fact that it created this rather nasty side-effective. It also used Thiomersal which was needed to help improve a range of different functions within the body, although it was manufactured in chicken eggs which meant it brought traces of egg protein to the table.

It also used a proprietary immunologic adjuvant which was helped to increase the body’s immune response, making it much easier for the body to fight back with the virus.

The main problems, then, started when the Swedish Medical Products Agency and the Finnish National Institute for Health & Welfare raised concerns about the drugs potency as it seemed to have a strong correlation with usage and then patients becoming narcoleptic. It was a specific problem within youths, meaning that many children were left affected for the rest of their lives with a hugely damaging and deeply concerning illness which can be incredibly hard to actually recover from in the long-term due to the lack of a cure. The main problem, then, was this unwanted or un-warranted side effect.

H1N1 under the microscope

What Causes Narcolepsy?

To understand the problem effectively, you need to know what may cause the illness in the first place. What occurs is that the body starts to read cells as part of our immune system as dangerous cells which need to be shut down. With this injection, it read it as signs of the flu. When the body goes for these cells and tries to remove them, you will reach the stage of narcolepsy. The immune system attacks specific nerve cells within the brain which stops the body from being able to make up a regulated sleeping pattern.

Research into the cause of this issue shows that the immune system is indeed responsible for the effects of narcolepsy, the problem is that everyone has different reasons for falling asleep at the wrong moment! The illness is not very specific in that forma, and indeed it tends to change quite heavily from person to person. When these damaged nerve cells start to exist and they become the more prominent members of that part of the brain, we will struggle.

The problem is that narcolepsy goes after a part of the brain known as the hypocretin, which is produced by specific nerve cells. By removing this from the body, you are unable to stay awake for considerable periods of time. The body stops producing what we need and thus the old rhythm of 16 on/8 off becomes impossible to keep up with. You now run with a short period, all over the place, sleeping pattern.

The chances are that this occurs as the immune system finds tiny traces of hypocretin and goes for them, creating a deeply challenging process that makes it harder for the body to counteract – in fact, with narcolepsy, it does not look to react.

The Root Problem

The root problem within this illness, then, is that it misreads what things are and goes on the attack to try and “deal with them”. This creates an unregulated way to live your life and eventually leads to the creation of narcolepsy within the system. The drug was created to help battle the flu but it seems to make the wrong parts of the body start reading the nerve cells as flu cells. This is because the molecular make-up of both H1N1 flu and the specific cells that you need are very similar, making it hard to tell the difference for your body.

With two very similar molecular makeups it becomes nice and simple for the body to lose itself and make this mistake. Danish researcher Birgitte Rahbek Kornum told Sciencenordic.com that;

“Up to now, it has only been possible to diagnose narcolepsy either through sleep analysis or by extracting fluids from the spinal cord. Our new discovery will make it possible to develop a simple blood test for diagnostic use. Our discovery can hopefully also be used to develop treatments against the disorder now that we know why it occurs.”

If the person who received the H1N1 vaccine had these similar molecules then there was nothing that could be done; the misappropriation of the drug means that the body more or less switched to attack mode right away. The H1N1 is so similar to hypocretin that it was impossible to make the distinguished change that was needed, and thus the problem more or less developed on its own and created a deeply worrying problem for many people. As you might imagine, following the discovery of this problem the usage of Pandemrix has been totally discontinued as companies move on to finding a safer and less damaging vaccination choice.

The Same Old Issues

The problem with this kind of vaccination was that it was created to offer a problem to an illness that, if it spread, could infect large numbers of people in no time at all. Whilst it’s equally unhelpful to claim that all vaccinations are a sham and not to be trusted, not every vaccination is properly prepared or vetted. The same old issues keep cropping up with vaccinations, as unintended consequences become a common part of modern medicine. Whilst it’s impossible to test for every little low-probability issue that may pop up with a vaccine, surely they can notice something with the hit rate that Pandemrix provided?

The CDC may disagree, but it’s not something that can be denied any longer. In 2015, we’ve seen enough vaccines provide the same problem to numerous people – it’s all about the development and growth of these changes within very specific genetic makeups. The issue here, then, is that many companies have been unable to work out why their vaccine caused so many problems – and the issue with Pandemrix is that nobody knew for a long time. In fact, at first, it was flat-out denied by everyone from the CDC to its developers themselves.

Today, though, it’s nearly impossible to refute. The correlation between how narcolepsy started, the similarity between molecular make-up and even the development of the vaccine as a one-size-fits-all style means that it was always likely that some kind of blowback could occur.

Whilst “only” 3.6 for every 100,000 users has developed narcolepsy, it’s still a huge amount of people to suffer from the illness after the injection.

Whilst some look to protect the name of vaccines given that it caused less damage than the virus it was posed to stop, is that really enough to forgive the damage it’s caused?

Flu jab showing needle

Molecular Mimicry?

Although eventually retracted, this interesting study held by Emmanuel Mignot showed that there was a definitive correlation between the illness, the vaccine, and the development of narcolepsy within certain types. As discussed above, the body more or less eats through hypocretin in those who suffer from narcolepsy, and this creates an interesting paradox.

It showed that, within the world of science, the term “molecular mimicry” was no longer just a term used to describe a possibility. It was one of the first definitive selections that science had to use to show the concept was realer than it had originally appeared. Auto-immunity is caused by the body misreading what it has to do, as it begins to round on itself and attack the wrong parts of the body in general.

By creating a bit of proof for this unique, if terrifying, phenomenon it soon becomes really easy to see why people are uncertain about trying out vaccines. The relationship between the three pieces of “evidence” here is quite startling, and provides a rather terrifying account of what can go wrong when you use a vaccine in the wrong manner – or when it’s created without the proper vetting being used throughout it!

“Investigation Warranted”

The most interesting part of all of this, though, is the fact that the World Health Organization released a statement saying that they believe that further investigation is needed. This isn’t usually the kind of thing you hear from the WHO as they tend to stay on the side of the pharmaceuticals, so it’s nice to see that the problem was obviously seriously enough for both parties to get involved. They stated that;

“WHO’s Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety (GACVS) reviewed the available data from Finland on 4 February 2011 and the new data from Sweden on 18 April 2011. GACVS agrees that further investigation is warranted concerning narcolepsy and vaccination against influenza (H1N1) 2009 with Pandemrix and other pandemic H1N1 vaccines. An increased risk of narcolepsy has not been observed in association with the use of any vaccines whether against influenza or other diseases in the past.”

However, one thing we took away from this is the fact that they also noted that the vaccination was not a “general worldwide phenomenon” due to the lack of cases found in the likes of Canada or for some selective European states. They believe that, at the time of writing, an “unidentified additional factor” was the cause of this development in countries like Sweden and Finland.

Whilst the diagnosis is certainly not a guarantee and there is no obvious correlation between both in some cases, the fact that so many cases exist that do have this problem is surely enough to warrant at least suspicion? If the drug has caused such widespread change in so many people, shortly after usage, then the only conventional and appropriate reasoning would be that it has been caused by something that is not quite right. What should be done, then, is look further into any other reasons.

Flu Vaccine Narcolepsy Video by Experimental Vaccines

The Bright Side

However, let’s look on the bright side of things for a moment – the vaccination faux pas which has ruined so many lives could actually offer a bit of long-term respite. Like many illnesses the lack of a cure makes it impossible to ever help those with narcolepsy lead a 100% normal life, but what can be learned is information about developing a long-term plan to cure the illness. New findings have been used to offer better ideas for how treatment of narcolepsy could be dealt with. The findings will help those who may develop the disorder find a solution in years to come.

However, since researchers have found that it’s caused by such specific changes in how cells are managed in the body, it’s become clear that only those with a very specific form of molecule within their blood stream is going to be likely to suffer from the illness. At the very least, this gives researchers the means and the ammo needed to go and make up a narcolepsy test. This will make it easier to tell those who may suffer from the illness if they are going to, thus improving their position as well as their physical capacity in years to come.

Speaking further to Sciencenordic.com, Kornum stated that;

“Up to now, it has only been possible to diagnose narcolepsy either through sleep analysis or by extracting fluids from the spinal cord. Our new discovery will make it possible to develop a simple blood test for diagnostic use. Our discovery can hopefully also be used to develop treatments against the disorder now that we know why it occurs,”

Whilst those who suffer today might not get any benefit from this, it may help develop a long-term solution to this problem for those who are suffering from it today.


It’s hard to tell, in our opinion. However, we tend to side on the story of those who are affected rather than the expensive pharmaceutical firms who will always give the corporate answer that least effects shares and customer confidence. The entire problem, though, is one that should be kept as a key player within the future of the companies.

There is nothing to say that these events were caused just by bad luck and with so many defined cases within such a short period of time of the illness being vaccinated means that only one logistical conclusion exists. The big factor now is whether or not people will be brave enough to admit this or whether it will just become another mistake put down to the halls of history.

At the very least it was a contributing factor to making something else occur – there is no way that these events just randomly occurred in the way that it is being portrayed. These kinds of events don’t normally occur and thus it can be very hard to look at anything else other than the application.

It is our belief that although it never affected everyone, enough was affected for it to be more than a coincidence. Looking at all available evidence as well as simple things like the fact the drug is no longer on the market, it soon becomes really easy to see that the chances are this was a problem on the side of the company rather than the people who took the vaccination.

We expect that this will create a precedent within vaccinations, especially given that they have the opportunity to create such a deeply dangerous and life changing effect in the body – if this is the start, then where does vaccinations causing problems ever actually end?

About Ian Stephens

Ian Stephens is an editor and writer for UFO Insight. He has a keen interest in the fields of strange phenomena, UFOs and aliens. He is also interested in space, physics and science in general. Writing for over 10 years in these fields, Ian has a lot of experience and knowledge to share.

Ian has written a total of 95 articles for UFO Insight. You can contact Ian via email.


  • David Walker says:

    Crazy idiots.

  • Mike Mossey says:

    Wouldn’t be the first time a vaccine did this.

  • Seth says:

    I think you need to look at it in terms of CFS, which is very real. I know because I have it. It has linked to infectious agents in the brain, including HHV-6, Mycoplasma, EBV, and Influenza. I didn’t get my CFS from a vaccine, but there are many cases of not only CFS but also vestibular neuritis linked to Influenza vaccines and not only the “bird” flu one. In fact, any influenza vaccine can cause this. Basically, if a virus (EBV, Influenza) or bacterial infection (e.g. mycoplasma, lyme) finds a way into your central nervous system…bad news… then you can end up with anything from CFS/FM(now called ME) to vestibular neuritis (life-long vertigo – fun!) to MS (this is a theoretical link – though very widely supported in medical community).

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