A cross-sectional survey of side effects after COVID-19 vaccination in Saudi Arabia: male versus female outcomes
COVID-19 pandemic is an ongoing public health crisis. Many COVID-19 vaccines have been developed with different efficacy and safety profiles. The current study aimed to investigate the short-term side effects associated with Oxford–AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine among males and females who received the first dose. A cross-sectional survey was conducted at KAAUH between February 28 and March 12, 2021. The main outcomes were the reported side effects at days 1, 2, and 3 post-vaccination.
The study included 528 participants, of whom 49.8% (n = 263) were males. The reported side effects among all participants during the first day included myalgia (49.8%), fever (42%), headache (40%), numbness (8.5%), eye muscle pain (6.3%), palpitations (4.7%), shortness of breath (4.4%), sore throat (4.2%), and gastrointestinal symptoms (4.2%). No anaphylaxis or thrombotic events were reported during the study period. There were statistically significant differences in the side effects reported (females vs males) during the first day, which included myalgia (63% vs 36.5%, p-value = 0.000), fever (51.7% vs 32.3%, p-value = 0.000), headache (55.5% vs 24.3%, p-value = 0.000), numbness (11.7% vs 5.3%, p-value = 0.009), sore throat (6.4% vs 1.9%, p-value = 0.009), eye muscle pain (9.4% vs 3%, p-value = 0.002), shortness of breath (7.5% vs 1.1%, p-value = 0.000), and palpitation (9.1% vs 0.4%, p-value = 0.000). The same side effects showed significant differences on day two. The reported side effects were common but not serious. Female respondents appeared to have more COVID-19 vaccine-associated symptoms.
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