All you Need to Know about COVID-19 Vaccine Side Effects
As the novel coronavirus continues to ravage the world and leaving devastating footprints in its trails, the world has never been more engrossed with finding a vaccine for a disease.
Thankfully, efforts are yielding results, and vaccines are being rolled out to save the situation. However, there are concerns about the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine.
To shed light on this subject, let’s take a second or two to touch on the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine. Shall we?
What are the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine?
So far, the most reported side effect of the vaccine is temporary pain at the injection site. However, trial reports from popular vaccines, Pfizer-BioNtech, and Moderna have gotten the all-clear and safe for use sign. And most importantly, there has been no death due to Anaphylaxis.
As you may already know, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the emergency use of Pfizer and BioNtech, and Moderna vaccines against COVID-19.
To meet the increasing demand for the COVID-19 vaccine and expand the vaccination coverage, the FDA is looking in the direction of another vaccine developed by a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, Janssen Biotech.
Regarding side effects, all of these vaccines have only exhibited mild side effects, most of which can be treated with over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers.
Hopefully, the FDA approves the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. If they do, we will be looking at more availability of the vaccine. All that is required is for them to comb through available data and assess the efficacy and safety of the vaccine and approve it for public use.
Safe vaccines have mild side effects
Contrary to popular misconceptions, when vaccines are cleared for use by relevant regulatory authorities, it doesn’t mean that there won’t be side effects.
However, they go the extra length to ensure the side effects don’t pose health risks. For instance, before the FDA approved the Pfizer-BioNtech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, it obtained results from clinical trials.
While Pfizer-BioNtech provided data for people who are 16 years and above, their Moderna counterpart submitted clinical trial reports for people 18 years and older. And the most reported side effect that resulted from vaccination is pain at the injection site.
Over time, other symptoms such as fatigue, headache, body aches, chills, and fever were reported. There were also reports of swollen lymph nodes in the armpits, which most women confuse for cancer.
Going by trial reports, one needs two doses of the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine to prevent COVID-19 which is effective at 95%. Similarly, two doses of the Moderna are also required to prevent COVID-19. However, it’s reported to be 94 per cent effective.
What is Anaphylaxis?
Earlier, we mentioned Anaphylaxis as one of the side effects of vaccines. It is an allergic reaction that can result from taking vaccines. Even though it is rare and treatable, it can be threatening if not treated.
Since the federal government approved the emergency use of COVID-19 vaccines, it collected information about side effects, including rare cases of Anaphylaxis. The rate of Anaphylaxis following the use of the Pfizer-BioNtech COVID-19 vaccine is 4.7 cases per million, while that of Moderna is 2.5 cases per million of the population.
So far, no anaphylaxis-related death has been reported. All trial reports and assessments are also performed on other available vaccines, such as the Oxford-AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Weighing the benefits and risks of COVID-19 vaccination
Before we discuss further on this topic, it’s important to note that people with certain health conditions are better off without the COVID-19 vaccine. Such a group of people (who doctors often advise against taking vaccines) include those with a history of severe allergic reaction to vaccines.
Outside rare occasions where medical experts exempt people who react to vaccines from taking the COVID-19 vaccine, there is a consensus that the benefits of the coronavirus vaccination far outweigh the risks.
So far., since the rollout of the vaccine in the United States, over 100 million people have been vaccinated against COVID-19. And the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention projects that the figures will only go north from there due to widespread acceptance of the vaccine.
One of the significant concerns about vaccination is Anaphylaxis, and similar concerns have also met the COVID-19 vaccines. However, with millions of people been vaccinated globally with the available and approved vaccines, severe side effects have like Anaphylaxis has been rare.
If, by chance, it does come to light, recall that it’s treatable. All you have to do is report to emergency health agencies nearest to you or call your started emergency line.