Fact Check

Did a Mother Sue a Hospital Because Her Son Turned Gay from Flu Shot?

“My son was perfectly normal before the shot,” she told reporters.

Published Oct. 4, 2016

A mother sued a hospital and claimed that a flu shot had "turned" her son gay.

On 26 September 2015, the World News Daily Report web site published an article (later aggregated by fellow fake news outlet That Viral Feed) claiming a woman had sued a hospital because she believed a flu shot had "turned" her son gay:

Andrea Benenacci, the mother of a 16-year-old teenager who recently received a flu shot at San Francisco General Hospital, is suing the hospital after she noticed extreme changes in her son’s sexual preferences.

The single mother of two blames the hospital for giving her son a vaccine shot which allegedly has made him queer.

“My son was perfectly normal before the shot” she told reporters.

Medical specialist Frank Weishberg claims he has observed a progression in similar claims in the past decade.

“In my 40 years of research on male health relating to problems of the male reproductive system, I have been witness to at least a hundred similar cases only in the past decade, with a large amount in the San Francisco Bay area, which is extremely atypical,” he admits.

The article and its claims were purely fabricated. World News Daily Report is a fake news site whose modus operandi involves snatching unrelated pictures and attaching them to wild falsehoods and garnering social media shares via clickbait content. The site's disclaimer clearly states that WNDR's content is completely false:

WNDR assumes however all responsibility for the satirical nature of its articles and for the fictional nature of their content. All characters appearing in the articles in this website — even those based on real people — are entirely fictional and any resemblance between them and any persons, living, dead, or undead is purely a miracle.

The photograph of "Andrea Benenacci" that accompanied the article was taken from August 2015 news stories about a woman named Amber McCullough (the mother of conjoined twins), and the picture of "Frank Weishberg" was a photograph of one-time "world's oldest doctor" Walter Watson. Neither image was accurately presented.

Previous World News Daily Report fictions include claims an infant in the Philippines was born with stigmata, a lottery winner died trying to gold-plate his genitals, a 14-year-old virgin was impregnated solely by a flu shot, a slaughterhouse employee killed dozens of coworkers in a period of twenty years, a donor heart recipient got an organ from a serial killer and then went on a killing spree, a man's genitals were mutilated during the attempted "rape" of a pit bull, a meth-using babysitter ate a small child while high, a Smithsonian employee was discovered to be "raping" a mummy, an overweight man sued Golden Corral after he was kicked out for staying too long, rat meat was sold as chicken wings in the United States before the 2016 Super Bowl, a woman broke a world record for giving birth to 14 children by 14 different men, a Nazi sub was located in the Great Lakes, a mother sued a tampon company for taking her daughter's virginity, a 101-year-old Italian woman gave birth to a healthy baby using fertility treatments, CIA agents were caught smuggling cocaine across the Mexican border, a National Geographic journalist was eaten alive by a giant sunfish, Edward Snowden said that Osama bin Laden was alive and well under CIA protection, a fisherman caught a giant shark in the Great Lakes, a four-year-old boy was arrested by the FBI for hacking their databases, and a man was arrested for embezzling McDonald's McNuggets in a body cavity.

Kim LaCapria is a former writer for Snopes.