WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- Medical practitioners called on the CDC to caution people on the possible side effects they may get from the coronavirus vaccine.
- Dr. Sandra Fryhofer said that due to the vaccine requiring two doses at different intervals, patients may not want to get the second dose after suffering uncomfortable side effects from the first.
- Trials’ participants noted that they experienced symptoms similar to those of Covid-19.
As states prepare to distribute coronavirus doses by next month, doctors urged health officials and vaccine makers to be transparent with regards to the potential side effects people may experience from a coronavirus vaccine shot.
During a Monday meeting with the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), an independent group of medical experts that advise the CDC, Dr. Sandra Fryhofer of the American Medical Association expressed her concern about the possibility that her patients might not come back for a second dose due to the potentially undesirable side effects they may experience after the first shot.
The Covid-19 vaccines of Pfizer and Moderna have been noted to require two doses at different intervals.
“We really need to make patients aware that this is not going to be a walk in the park,” Fryhofer, a liaison to the committee, said. “They are going to know they had a vaccine. They are probably not going to feel wonderful. But they’ve got to come back for that second dose.”
In September, vaccine trial participants of Moderna and Pfizer told CNBC that after receiving the shots, they experienced unpleasant symptoms such as high fever, body aches, bad headaches, daylong exhaustion. They added however that the symptoms passed after a day and sooner for some.
Both pharmaceutical companies have confirmed that their vaccines could trigger mild Covid-19-like symptoms like muscle pain, chills and headache.
In the Moderna study, a North Carolina woman in her 50s said she suffered intense migraine that left her drained for a day but felt better the next day after taking Excedrin.
“The first dose is no big deal. And then the second dose will definitely put you down for the day for sure. You will need to take a day off after the second dose,” she said.
Children’s Minnesota nurse practitioner Patsy Stinchfield who was present in the meeting also suggested that officials and drugmakers should discuss the side effects in a more positive way by using words like “immune response” instead of “adverse reaction”.
The committee meeting comes three days following Pfizer’s and its partner BioNTech’s application for an emergency use authorization for their vaccines from the Food and Drug Administration.
Once the FDA authorizes the vaccine, ACIP is expected to set an emergency meeting to recommend specific measures on distribution.