Doctors recommend that all individuals who are 60 years of age and over should get the shingles vaccine. This is because after the age of 60, you are more susceptible to developing complications that are associated this condition. The efficacy of the ingredients tends to wear off after a period of time.
Experts advise that the vaccine needs to be taken once in five years. However, this can differ from one person to another. It is best to develop a proper schedule in consultation with your doctor.
For many people, the one obstacle in their way of getting the protection they need against potential complications is that they are worried about the possible side effects. This article aims to clear those doubts.
Understanding The Possible Side Effects
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Before being approved, Zostavax, which is the approved shingles vaccine, was tested on thousands of individuals to ensure that it was safe, while also being effective. Most people who were tested did not have any severe side effects to the shot. While a few people did react to it, the reaction was very mild.
The fact is, the drug contains some ingredients that could trigger off allergic reactions in those who are more susceptible to them, for example, those who are allergic to the antibiotic neomycin or to gelatin.
Those who have undergone chemotherapy or radiation treatment for cancer as well as those who have HIV/AIDs are also at higher risk and should avoid getting the shot. Even taking steroids or other drugs to suppress immune response can put you at higher risk. It is a good idea to speak to your doctor before making a decision either way.
Mild side effects usually include localized soreness and itching along with redness in the area of the injection. In some cases this was accompanied by swelling. The effects were only temporary however and calmed down after a while.
Severe Side Effects Are Very Rare
Very few people who received the shot had a more severe reaction to the ingredients. While this was extremely rare, it is good to know about it so that you know what to do should you experience this.
Severe allergic reaction to this vaccine is known as anaphylaxis. If you suffer from difficulty breathing, swelling of the face, dizziness, hives or irregular heartbeat after having received the injection, you could be having a severe reaction and need to seek medical help immediately as it could be life-threatening.