Few people given a coronavirus vaccine report side effects, with none of them being serious, the ZOE COVID Symptom Study has found.
According to the study, 37% experienced some local after-effects, such as pain or swelling near the site of the injection, after their first dose, rising to about 45% of the 10,000 who had received two doses. Additionally, 14% had at least one whole-body (systemic) after-effect - such as fever, aches or chills within seven days of the first dose, rising to about 22% after the second dose.
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‘This data set is a unique look at those who have been vaccinated in the real world outside trials, and so far the post vaccine effects we see are mild and in the minority of people,’ said Tim Spector, lead scientist on the ZOE COVID Symptom Study app and Professor of Genetic Epidemiology at King’s College London.
‘It’s interesting to see that those with previous COVID are more likely to experience these mild after effects than naive subjects.’
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The ZOE app also asked over one million contributors whether or not they want to receive a vaccine and if not, why. Whilst almost 95% said ‘yes’, just over 5% of respondents were either reported being unsure or unwilling to accept a vaccine. The main three reasons given by hesitant contributors were; long term side effects (50.2%), lack of knowledge (37.2%), and concerns about potential adverse reactions (30.9%).
‘This could be good news, as a larger response like this suggests that those getting a first dose after having had COVID are generating a stronger immune reaction and may get greater protection from just a single shot of the vaccine,’ added Professor Spector.
‘We are urging as many people as possible to download the ZOE app and log their vaccines with us, so that we can independently monitor how we all react differently and how the vaccines impact the overall pandemic.’
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