Fewer than one in 12 people reported significant side effects from a Covid-19 vaccine in a new study.
The Dundee University research looked at the side effects reported by people in the week following their jab.
Almost half of the people surveyed by the university’s school of medicine said they felt better after being vaccinated.
The VAC4COVID study recruited more than 12,000 people from across the UK, with participants reporting changes in their health and wellbeing after receiving a coronavirus vaccine.
Most common side effects
Amongst other discoveries, the study found out about the most common side effects, including fever, headaches and fatigue.
Figures from the study show 7.9% of participants reported a change in their health which they considered sufficient to disrupt their usual daily activities in the seven days after receiving their inoculation.
Dr Amy Rogers, a VAC4COVID study doctor at Dundee University, said: “Vaccines work by stimulating our immune systems to mount a defence against infections.
“These are just the sort of symptoms that we would expect at least some people to report after receiving an effective vaccine.
“The side effects of Covid-19 vaccination have been a talking point, but the figure of 7.9% is very much in line with what we expect from any vaccination, such as seasonal flu.
“That should make these results very reassuring for anybody still concerned about the possibility of side effects from their Covid-19 vaccination.
“In contrast, 45% of VAC4COVID participants reported feeling better after receiving a jab.”
45% report feeling better after vaccine
While most people do not experience any significant side effects as a result of vaccination, the study has identified that the different vaccines used in the UK do cause slightly different side effects.
Recipients of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine were more likely to report headaches and fatigue after their first dose than their second.
Meanwhile, those who received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine tend to report more side effects after their second dose.
Researchers said as more vaccines become available, such differences may help inform health authorities as to which vaccines to use.
Study ‘completely independent’
Professor Tom MacDonald, the VAC4COVID chief investigator, said: “This study is completely independent, with no involvement by vaccine manufacturers.
“We believe this is important and means the public can have confidence in our findings.”
The research team are continuing with the study and are especially keen to hear from more people aged 18 to 30 and pregnant women, to help learn as much as possible about how people feel after these vaccines.
“By taking part in this important research, anyone who has one or two vaccines, or has not yet been vaccinated against Covid-19, can help us learn more about how people feel after vaccination,” Dr Rogers added.
Anyone in the UK aged 18 or over who has an email address can take part in the VAC4COVID study.