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(NEXSTAR) – A recent study found that more people reported side effects after receiving Moderna COVID-19 than Pfizer vaccine.
Published Monday in the journal JAMA Insights, the study points to mild side effects of both vaccines: headache, fever, chills, and pain or swelling at the injection site.
Between Dec. 14 and Feb. 28, approximately 1,085,000 people reported symptoms from the Pfizer vaccine after the first dose.About 1,465,000 reported symptoms from the first Moderna vaccination over the same period.
For the second time, about 666,000 people reported side effects from Pfizer vaccine, compared with 777,000 people who received the Moderna vaccine.
The researchers gathered data from the Centers for Disease Control’s V-safe surveillance system, which reports side effects of several vaccines, including the new COVID-19 vaccine.
The study found that for both vaccines, the reaction dose was highest on the first day after vaccination and decreased steadily through day seven.
The study also reported that people younger than 65 reported more V-safe side effects compared to those 65 and older, the typical vaccine encounter.
Women and younger people are more likely to suffer from common vaccine side effects.
“That doesn’t mean they have more symptoms,” said Anne Liu, an infectious disease physician at Stanford University, adding that it’s possible for young people and women to report their symptoms. With more frequency
“I’m going to talk about general things here. But in general, our culture discourages men from showing their symptoms, ”said Liu.
The reason younger people have more symptoms may be because they have a stronger immune system.
“Older adults’ immune systems tend to weaken over time,” Liu explains, meaning their reactions to vaccines become less severe.
“If you don’t have side effects, you may have a weaker reaction,” Liu said.
That doesn’t mean the vaccine isn’t working. The immune system is complex and prone, and side effects are not the only signs a vaccine is effective.