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One in four suffer side effects after Covid vaccine

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Around 25 percent of people given one of the Covid vaccines suffer side effects that range from headaches and fatigue.

Most of the side effects are transitory, and last for one or two days, say researchers from King’s College London, who tracked vaccine reactions reported by the 627,000 users of a Covid Symptom Study app.

Side effects were higher among women and those aged under the age of 55.  Reactions were also three times more likely in people who already had a Covid-19 infection.

Rates of side effects were similar for the Astra Zeneca and Pfizer vaccinations, with 25 percent reporting one or more systemic reactions; of these, 35 percent reported reactions after the first or second Pfizer jab, and 33 percent after the first AstraZeneca dose.

The most common reaction was headache, reported by nearly 20 percent of the Pfizer group, and by 23 percent after the AstraZeneca vaccine.

Fatigue was the second most common reaction, experienced by around 22 percent of people.

Most people experienced some tenderness around the area where the vaccine had been administered.

The King’s researchers say their study shows that ‘real life’ reactions were less than those recorded by the two vaccine’s phase III trials, when 42 percent reported headaches and 47 percent fatigue.

(Source: Lancet Infectious Diseases, 2021; doi: 10.1016/S1473-3099(21) 00224-3)

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