Which vaccine has the fewest side effects?

National

BRAXTON COUNTY, W. Va. (WOWK) – Since people have three vaccine options to choose from for protection against COVID-19, they may be wondering which one has the fewest side effects?

Kimberly Rohr said she received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, while Madison Collett got the Pfizer-BioNTech and James Shaver was given Moderna.

Three different vaccines, three different reactions.  

“I did develop a fever after taking the J&J, and then also, I had a really significant headache and some body aches,” Rohr said.

Collett said she didn’t experience any reactions out of the ordinary.

“Just normal reaction from a vaccine so it wasn’t too bad,” she said.

Shaver said his reactions came after his second dose of the Moderna vaccine.

“The first vaccine I didn’t have any side effects at all,” he said. “On the second shot, I felt good that day but that night I had a fever and I took a couple of Tylenol, and then for a couple of days I just felt really tired.”

Experts have found that the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccines tends to come with more side effects than the first, including tiredness, headaches, chills, fever, nausea and muscle pain.

But which vaccine has the fewest side effects?

Braxton County nurse practitioner Yvonne Staschiak, who said she’s been tracking the effects of each vaccine, said most people who get Moderna or Pfizer will have a sore arm, muscle aches and fatigue that usually go away within one to two days.

“As for Johnson and Johnson, that one is usually hitting the first day of the vaccine. We’re seeing a lot of high fevers with that one, a lot of headache and just overall not feeling well,” Staschiak said.

According to the New York Times, similar short-lived side effects have been shown to be more common after the second dose of the two-shot Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. (The J&J vaccine requires only one shot.)

But, what if you don’t have a reaction?

“Your body’s still building the immune response. Everybody is different,” Staschiak said.

Most of the people surveyed by Nexstar’s WOWK said they didn’t have a preference on which vaccine to get. They simply took what they could get.

“I’m just glad that I was able to receive one,” Collett said.

No matter which vaccine you get, experts say all of them are effective against the coronavirus.

“All COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States have been shown to be highly effective at preventing COVID-19,” said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As of Friday, more than 157 million vaccine doses had been administered, according to the CDC.

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