An Australian DJ says he was partially paralyzed after the Moderna shot, but doctors refused to link his health problems to the vaccine.
An award-winning Australian musician who was partially paralyzed claims that five different doctors personally told him it was almost certainly a reaction to the Moderna vaccine, but they wouldn’t put it in writing for fear of being written off.
Tyson Illingworth, aka tyDi, who rose to fame at age 17 after being signed to Armin van Buuren’s Armada label, says he is still in constant pain and taking drugs and injections on a daily basis, more than six months after being in hospitalized and went through rehab to “learn to use my hands and feet again”.
The 35-year-old was forced to stop touring for six months and says his “life was emotionally torn” both by his injury and by doctors’ alleged refusal to officially acknowledge what they told him in private.
“I was in hospital for quite some time recovering, relearning how to use my hands and feet, walking between traffic cones,” he told news.com.au.
“I understand there can be rare side effects – I was unlucky. But why have five different doctors all said to me, ‘I know what this is, it’s a vaccine reaction, there’s no other explanation, but I can’t say anything because I’m going to unsubscribe’?”
The agency that oversaw Australia’s 800,000 registered practitioners and 193,800 students warned last year that anyone who wanted to ‘undermine’ the national Covid vaccine rollout could be deregistered or even prosecuted.
The Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) told news.com.au it was dealing with a “number” of cases and a “handful” of doctors had been suspended or beaten with conditions because “a practitioner’s alleged behavior poses a serious danger for the public”.
Side effect not recognized
A graduate of Griffith University’s prestigious Queensland Conservatory and who has worked with major clients including Disney on Ice, Illingworth says he is risking his reputation by speaking out about his “frustrating” experience.
“I’ve been so pro-science and pro-vaccine and so outspoken [about getting vaccinated] before this happened to me,” he said.
“I still think people should have the vaccine, I just think we should be able to have a fucking conversation about it. The only way to find out the truth is through a civil discourse. What kind of world are we in if doctors can no longer keep their oath? If doctors can’t talk about it, all they can do is prescribe a patch that may be more dangerous than getting to the bottom of the real problem.”
Illingworth received his first Moderna vaccine early this year.
A few weeks later, he began to experience “extreme neurological pain” and red spots like veins or stretch marks appeared on his sides.
His motor skills “beat fast” and he began to lose feeling in his hands and feet before waking up partially paralyzed.
“I couldn’t move my legs, couldn’t move my hands, which is terrifying for someone who uses their hands for a job,” he said. “I couldn’t even write my name down.”
He was taken to hospital where doctors questioned him about his drug use. Illingworth told them he didn’t take drugs but admitted to using nitrous oxide when he was younger – which they cited as the cause at the time.
Doctors discharged him with “neuropathy due to past drug use” and told him it was “OK for me to take another shot of Moderna”.
Neuropathy is not recognized side effect from Moderna.
Heavy or frequent use of nitrous oxide can cause neurological damage leading to peripheral neuropathy, but Illingworth says the “timelines don’t match.”
“I got the second one and sure enough everything came back, but worse,” he said.
‘They lose their driver’s license’
Illingworth was hospitalized twice more and was discharged without answers both times. He then saw “doctor after doctor trying to figure out what was going on,” and said he was told it was “no coincidence that the timing just matched.”
“They won’t write it down,” he said.
“I felt played by the system. Doctors take an oath to help their patients, but if they’re afraid of being unenrolled in this way, how can they do their job? How can I get help? My life will never be the same again. Doctors Couldn’t Answer Me – Will This Last Forever? They said they didn’t know.”
Illingworth says he is grateful to be able to move again, but has “permanent scars” on his sides and is still on strong painkillers. He also has “moments when my vision becomes extremely blurry”.
“I have extreme pain in the morning; waking up is the worst,” he said.
“It’s like being electrocuted – it starts at the brain and goes to my fingers and feet, down my spine. I had never felt it in my life. They call it neuropathic pain.”
Illingworth insisted he was “not an anti-vax”.
“After this I got Covid – maybe I could have died, who knows, maybe the vaccine did its job,” he said.
“My concern is that I can’t sit and talk to you and say these are the facts because the doctors can’t give me the facts because they’ve admitted they’re going to lose their license.”
He added: “I can’t say 100 percent for sure [it was the vaccine] – I don’t think a scientist would ever be 100 percent. But I went from being able to swim laps in the pool to not being able to. The only variable between that happening and me being normal was taking the vaccine.”
According to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), there are 6722 adverse event reports of about 4.6 million doses of Moderna on June 26.
The TGA’s Database of Adverse Event Notifications lists the most common side effects reported as chest pain followed by headache and injection site reaction.
“Like all drugs, Covid-19 vaccines can cause some side effects,” the TGA says.
“Vaccination against Covid-19 is the most effective way to reduce deaths and serious illnesses from infection. The protective benefits of vaccination far outweigh the potential risks.”
‘Handful’ of doctors suspended
In a Position statement published in March 2021, AHPRA and National Boards warned physicians of any behavior that could “undermine” vaccine rollout.
“Any promotion of anti-vaccination statements or health advice that contradicts the best available scientific evidence or that actively undermines the national immunization campaign (including through social media) is not supported by national councils and may violate codes of conduct and be subject to investigation and possible regulatory action,” it said.
“Health professionals are reminded that it is an offense under national law to advertise a regulated health service (including through social media) in a way that is false, misleading or deceptive. Advertising containing false, misleading or deceptive claims about Covid-19, including anti-vaccine materials, could lead to prosecution by AHPRA.”
Brett Simmonds, head of the Pharmacy Board and co-chair of the Forum of Presidents of the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme, said in a statement at the time that “there is no place for anti-vaccination messages in professional health practice, and any promotion of anti-vaccine -vaccination claims, including on social media, and advertising may be subject to regulatory action.”
An AHPRA spokeswoman could not say how many health workers had been deregistered or faced other regulatory measures to undermine the vaccination campaign.
“We are managing a number of cases that have arisen as a result of statements allegedly made by registered practitioners in violation of national councils’ codes of conduct, which were specifically addressed in the Covid-19 position statement,” she said.
“There are a handful of practitioners whose registration has been suspended or subject to conditions because a National Council has determined that a practitioner’s alleged conduct poses a serious risk to the public, or because it believes it is generally interest is to have acted. They are interim decisions that serve to protect the public as our investigations continue.”
She added: “While we will intervene where the public is at serious risk, the majority of practitioners are doing the right thing and have led the remarkable public health response to the Covid-19 pandemic in Australia. We commend them for this continued public health response.”
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