Coronavirus vaccine: Your age could increase your risk of side effects – are you at risk?2021-10-23
NHS doctors explain the Winter Vaccines
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Unfortunately, anyone who gets COVID-19 can become seriously ill or have long-term effects. The NHS says vaccines approved for use in the UK “have met strict standards of safety, quality and effectiveness”. The vaccines can cause some side effects, but not everyone gets them, and a recent study suggests age may play a role in your experience.
The research, ‘An objective systematic comparison of the most common adverse events of COVID-19 vaccines’, was published in the online site medRxiv.
It has not been peer-reviewed, so reports new medical research that has yet to be evaluated and so should not be used to guide clinical practice.
The analysis focused on the three two-dose vaccines currently approved in the EU: AstraZeneca, Pfizer BioNTech and Moderna.
The researchers found the most common effects with any of the vaccines “were fatigue, headache and myalgia”. Myalgia is the medical term for muscle pain.
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The article says “middle-aged subjects (18 to 55 years) had more side effects than older individuals” over 55 years.
Overall, regardless of dose, the frequency of each adverse event “was very similar across vaccines and did not show a tendency towards one vaccine over another”.
Moreover, it says that overall the approved vaccines are “well tolerated”, and most adverse events “are only mild”.
The authors note that “vaccination is an important tool in the fight against pandemics” though associated adverse events “may negatively impact the public perception of vaccines, therefore leading to decreased vaccination willingness”.
Older unvaccinated adults are more likely to be hospitalised or die from COVID-19.
The NHS says “the COVID-19 vaccines are the best way to protect yourself and others” and has outlined possible side effects, which should not last longer than a week.
These include a sore arm from the injection, feeling tired, a headache, feeling achy or feeling or being sick.
“More serious side effects, such as allergic reactions or blood clotting, are very rare,” it adds.
You may also get a high temperature or feel hot or shivery one or two days after your vaccination.
The NHS says: “You can take painkillers such as paracetamol if you need to.
If your symptoms get worse or you’re worried, call 111.”If you have a high temperature that lasts longer than two days, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste, you may have COVID-19.
If this is the case you may have caught it just before or after your vaccination, as you cannot catch it from the vaccination itself.
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