CORONAVIRUS/Soreness at injection area most common COVID vaccine side effect in Taiwan

Pain at the injection site has been the most common side effect among COVID-19 vaccine recipients in Taiwan, while 10 cases of breakthrough infections have been recorded, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said Wednesday.

Among the first batches of 30,000 people that each received the AstraZeneca, Moderna and locally-developed Medigen vaccine in Taiwan and who are participants in the post-vaccination data collection system called V-Watch, the most commonly reported side effect was pain at the injection site, CECC spokesperson Chuang Jen-hsiang (???) said at the daily COVID-19 press briefing.

The voluntary system allows people who have received a COVID-19 vaccine to regularly report their health status to the CECC, and it is separate from the mechanism used to report serious adverse reactions to the vaccine.

According to the data collected, around 60 percent of AstraZeneca recipients said they experienced this side effect after getting their first shot, and 40 percent reported it after their second shot.

Pain at the injection area was also experienced by around 80 percent of Moderna recipients after their first shot and 85 percent after getting their second shot, Chuang said.

Meanwhile, 30 percent of those who got the first shot of the Medigen vaccine also reported this side effect. Data for second dose recipients of the Medigen vaccine is not yet available because Taiwan only began administering the vaccine on Aug. 23 and no one has yet received a second shot.

Other common side effects reported were fatigue, muscle pain, and swelling at the injection site, Chuang said.

In terms of difference in side effects after taking the first and second shot, he said that side effects were more common after dose one than dose two in AstraZeneca vaccine recipients, though the opposite was true for those who got the Moderna vaccine.

Around 21 percent of people reported that they were unable to work the day after getting their second Moderna shot, compared to 6 percent who said so after their first shot of the brand, he said.

Among AstraZeneca recipients, 10 percent said they were unable to work the day after getting their first dose, and the number dropped to 2 percent after the second dose.

A little over 5 percent of people who got the first Medigen shot said they were unable to work the day after, he said.

In terms of age, Chuang said people aged 18-49 were more likely to experience side effects than those aged 50 and above.

Among the 880,000 people who were fully vaccinated in Taiwan as of Aug. 29, 10 of them contracted the coronavirus 14 days after getting their second dose and have been classified as having breakthrough infections, Chuang said.

They had all received the AstraZeneca vaccine, he said.

Eight were infected in Taiwan and two contracted the disease overseas, though none of them have experienced serious symptoms, he said.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel