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Vaccine Safety

Common Adverse Events

Vaccines are considered to be safe and effective with most common adverse events being mild and are signs that the body is developing immunity:

  • Pain, swelling, or redness where the shot was given
  • Mild fever
  • Chills
  • Feeling tired
  • Headache
  • Muscle and joint aches

Serious Adverse Events

More serious side effects are rare but can occur. Some examples are:

  • Anaphylaxis (0.65 cases/1 million vaccinations)
  • Thrombocytopenia from Rubella vaccine (1 case/40,000 vaccinations)
  • Orchitis from Mumps vaccine (0.3 cases/1 million vaccinations)
  • Intussusception from Rotavirus vaccine (1 case/100,000 vaccinations)
  • Guillain-Barre from flu vaccine (1 case/1.25 million vaccinations; association is stronger with flu infection than the vaccine)

Why Report a Vaccine Adverse Event

  • It helps to improve patient safety through careful monitoring and pharmacovigilance.
  • It is required by IHS policy in Chapter 7 of the Indian Health Manual
  • Healthcare providers may be required by law to report under certain conditions: