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A warning that the new swine flu jab is linked to a deadly nerve disease has been sent by the Government to senior neurologists in a confidential letter.
Doctors have been put on alert for cases of a nerve disease following the introduction of a vaccine for swine flu, it has emerged.
Health chiefs said there was an increased risk of developing Guillain-Barre syndrome after a flu-like illness, but stressed there was no evidence linking it to the vaccination.
The syndrome, which affects about 1,500 people a year in the UK, attacks the nervous system and can result in temporary paralysis.
Its exact cause is unclear but many people affected by it have had a viral or bacterial infection a few weeks earlier.
A Health Protection Agency (HPA) spokesman said enhanced surveillance was "routine" when introducing a new vaccine.