Study Says Moderna Vaccine Has More Side Effects than Pfizer

A state-run mass vaccination site at the Bay Eden Senior Center in the Bronx. (Don Pollard/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)

Newly released data from the CDC has revealed that people who receive the Moderna vaccine are more likely to feel adverse side effects from the vaccine.

Posted online in the journal JAMA, which is published by the American Medical Association, the study drew from the CDC’s V-Safe surveillance system, which documents people’s negative reactions throughout the country. The study found people experienced headache, fatigue, itching, and soreness and discomfort around the injection site.

The study was not focused on anaphylactic episodes and other potentially serious allergic reactions, the Hill reported. Previous studies have indicated the Pfizer vaccine can induce allergic reactions in people with a history of allergies, and such people are encouraged to take the Moderna or the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The CDC’s data revealed 74% of people who received the first Moderna vaccine complained of discomfort as opposed to 65.4% of people who received the first Pfizer vaccine. For the second dose, 82% of people who received the Moderna vaccine has irritation, while 68.6% of people who received the Pfizer did.

The majority of people report mild symptoms: irritation at the vaccine site and soreness in the arm injected. Other frequent side effects were fatigue and headaches. After the second dose, people reported mild fevers, joint pain and chills.

Serious side effects, such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, or serious stomach aches remain rare.

“The public understandably has been concerned about reports of rare, severe allergic reactions to the Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. “[The] benefits of COVID-19 vaccination far outweigh the risks.”


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