If you are thinking about getting the shingles vaccine, or if your physician has recommended it, you may be wondering about the shingles vaccine side effects. After all, almost every medical preparation has some sort of secondary effect, and sometimes those secondary effects are adverse.
What are shingles vaccine side effects? While a shingles vaccine can be a huge help to anyone over age 60 and at risk for shingles, any medication can cause unexpected problems.
Shingles Vaccine Side Effects
The three most common side effects of a shingles vaccination by far are redness, pain and swelling at the place where the vaccine was injected. Other point-of-injection problems can include itching, warmth and bruising, although these occur with much less frequency than redness, pain and swelling.
In addition to reactions at the injection site, you may experience other side effects, such as a common cold, a runny nose, a fever or diarrhea. In addition, some people get headaches, chills or body aches. Like itching, warmth and bruising where the vaccine was injected, these side effects are relatively uncommon.
More Severe Shingles Vaccine Side Effects
There are other "rare" side effects that can be potentially dangerous. If you experience any of these problems after a shingles vaccination, contact your physician right away. These reactions include signals that you are having an allergic reaction, such as finding it difficult to breathe or swallow, or developing a rash similar to that of chickenpox. Another rare side effect involves asthma. If you have asthma and your asthma seems to be getting worse, you may be having problems as a result of the vaccine. If you feel like the muscles in your neck, shoulders and hips are getting stiff and are hurting or if you think that you are experiencing a heart attack, get help.
A Note About Side Effects
Side effects are unintended reactions that some people experience when taking a given drug. These reactions can range from mildly annoying to life-threatening. However, not everyone "gets" side effects when taking a drug.
Keep in mind that any given side effect that you are feeling may not be a side effect at all, but might be a symptom of another medical condition. Therefore, before a doctor gives you a shingles vaccine, disclose your full medical history. And, if you experience a side effect that is rare and potentially dangerous, contact your doctor for peace of mind, if nothing else.
What are shingles? This condition might seem like an ordinary rash at first, but it can grow more serious if you ignore it.
What do shingles look like? The signs will resemble a painful rash, but there are several distinctive characteristics that are specific to this condition.