VACCINE Q&A: What are the side effects from the vaccine?

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control's website says the COVID-19...
The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control's website says the COVID-19 vaccines do not contain live, attenuated or inactivated vaccines.(Live 5)
Updated: Jan. 12, 2021 at 2:40 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Concern about side effects has prompted many questions about the COVID-19 vaccine.

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control says any vaccine or medication can cause side effects.

But its website says those side effects are typically minor, such as a sore arm or low-grade fever, and go away within a few days.

“As with all vaccines, COVID-19 vaccines are not approved until clinical trials have taken place that show they are both safe and effective,” the website states.

The first adverse reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine in the United States was reported in December in Juneau, Alaska.

A female healthcare worker at Juneau’s Bartlett Regional Hospital had an anaphylactic reaction to the vaccine 10 minutes after receiving her first dose. Doctors said she did not have a history of allergies.

Her symptoms included feeling flush and short of breath and she was taken to the emergency room.

The health care worker also had an elevated heart rate and a rash on her face and torso. She was given an epinephrine dosage, which seemed to temporarily relieve her symptoms.

When the symptoms reemerged, she was placed on an epinephrine drip, given steroids for her anaphylactic reaction and moved to an intensive care unit for observation. She was taken off the epinephrine drip the following morning, hospital officials said, adding that after that treatment she was considered healthy and “back to baseline.”

The protocol at the hospital where the vaccine was administered is to monitor people who receive it for 30 minutes after their dose is administered. The Juneau healthcare worker’s reaction came within about 10 minutes.

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said national guidance recommends people who have adverse reactions with the first dose of the vaccine should not receive a second dose.

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