COVID Vaccine Safety
According to the CDC, millions of people have safely received a COVID-19 vaccine. In fact, over 211 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through mid-April.
There was a short pause in the distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine due to a possible relationship between the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and a rare adverse blood clot (thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome, or TTS) event in 15 patients world-wide. This adverse event is rare, occurring at a rate of about 7 per 1 million vaccinated women between 18 and 49 years old. For women 50 years and older and men of all ages, this adverse event is even more rare.
Upon receipt of the Johnson & Johnson/Jansen vaccine and for three weeks after receiving the vaccine, be on the lookout for possible symptoms of a blood clot with low platelets. These include:
- Severe or persistent headaches or blurred vision
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Leg swelling
- Persistent abdominal pain
- Easy bruising or tiny blood spots under the skin beyond the injection site
- Seek medical care right away if you develop one or more of these symptoms.
Overall, COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. COVID-19 vaccines were evaluated in tens of thousands of participants in clinical trials. The vaccines met FDA’s rigorous scientific standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality needed to support emergency use authorization (EUA).
Millions of people in the United States have received COVID-19 vaccines, and these vaccines will undergo the most intensive safety monitoring in U.S. history. This monitoring includes using both established and new safety monitoring systems to make sure that COVID-19 vaccines are safe.
Long-term side effects are unlikely
Serious side effects that would cause a long-term health problem are extremely unlikely following COVID-19 vaccination. Long-term side effects following any vaccination are extremely rare. Vaccine monitoring has historically shown that if side effects are going to happen, they generally happen within six weeks of receiving a vaccine dose. For this reason, the Food and Drug Administration required each of the authorized COVID-19 vaccines to be studied for at least two months (eight weeks) after the final dose. Millions of people have received COVID-19 vaccines, and no long-term side effects have been detected. CDC continues to closely monitor COVID-19 vaccines. If scientists find a connection between a safety issue and a vaccine, FDA and the vaccine manufacturer will work toward an appropriate solution to address the specific safety concern (for example, a problem with a specific lot, a manufacturing issue, or the vaccine itself).