2nd dose of COVID-19 vaccine may bring more intense side effects

Published: Mar. 25, 2021 at 8:05 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - If you’re gearing up for your second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, health experts say you may have more intense side effects.

19 News found that means the vaccine is working.

More than one in four adult Ohioans has now gotten at least their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

You may have heard from fully vaccinated friends and family that they dealt with more side effects the second time around.

We spoke with dr. Alan Taege with the Department of Infectious Disease at Cleveland Clinic so you know what to expect.

“I recognized even personally after my second dose, the next day I did feel a bit tired, a bit achy. I took a couple Tylenol and kept working. So I think for the majority of people you may notice a little bit more, but it’s not likely to be something that is really serious or significant,” Taege said.

Dr. Taege commonly hears of a low-grade fever and fatigue after the second shot.

The CDC reports side effects may be more intense.

You can expect pain, redness, and swelling at the injection site.

Common side effects also include tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, fever, and nausea.

Dr. Taege said it’s normal to notice some symptoms.

“And the fact that you do notice a little bit more symptoms just only reinforces the fact that your body is building a response to the vaccine, which is exactly what you want,” he said.

Your body is building protection and symptoms should go away in a few days.

If you’ve had COVID-19 and get the vaccine, Dr. Taege said some people are having a bigger reaction to the shots.

“But again, this isn’t necessarily that the vaccine is bad, what it’s telling you your immune system is saying ‘aha, I see this stuff again and we’re going to attack it and conquer it,’” he said.

Dr. Taege said when they measured antibodies in people who had Covid-19 and got one dose of vaccine and compared it to other people even with two doses of vaccine, the levels of people who had Covid before are much higher.

“It’s amazing to see and we’re hoping that will translate into better longer-term immunity,” he said.

Right now doctors believe the vaccine protects you from COVID-19 for at least six months.

Researchers are still tracking people vaccinated in the trials, so that information will be updated as time goes on.

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