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Covishield vs Covaxin: Your vaccine guide to list of possible 'side-effects'

The govt has permitted all private hospitals to give Covid-19 vaccine if they adhere to the laid down norm. (Reuters)Premium
The govt has permitted all private hospitals to give Covid-19 vaccine if they adhere to the laid down norm. (Reuters)

  • The government has said both vaccines are safe, but there are some associated side-effects as with any other vaccine
  • SII and Bharat Biotech had also put out the list of possible side-effects of Covishield and Covaxin on their websites

India has entered the second phase of its vaccination drive with two 'Made in India vaccines- Covishield and Covaxin- against the coronavirus disease. Prime Minister Narendra Modi also took the shot of Bharat Biotech's Covaxin to dispel the hesitancy over the Covid-19 vaccine. The government has said both vaccines are safe, but there are some associated side-effects as with any other vaccine. The Indian Council of Medical Research and Bharat Biotech announced that phase 3 results of Covaxin, developed by them, have shown an interim vaccine efficacy of 81 per cent in preventing Covid-19, and dubbed it as an important milestone in vaccine discovery.

The companies had also put out the list of possible side-effects on their respective websites.

Who should not take Covaxin?

Those who have any history of allergies, fever, bleeding disorder or are on a blood thinner, are immune-compromised or are on a medicine that affects your immune system, are pregnant, are breastfeeding, any other serious health-related issues, as determined by the vaccinator/officer supervising vaccination, must not take Covaxin. People who have taken another anti-Covid vaccine should not take Covaxin.

Side-effects of Covaxin

The mild side-effects of the drug include injection site pain, injection site swelling, injection site redness, injection site itching, stiffness in the upper arm, weakness in the injection arm, body ache, headache, fever, malaise, weakness, rashes, nausea, vomiting.

The company said that there is a slim chance the vaccine causes a severe allergic reaction. Signs of a severe adverse event include difficulty in breathing, swelling of face and throat, fast heart-beat, rashes all over the body, dizziness and weakness.

Also Read | How citizen data led India’s covid battle

Who should not take Covishield?

Serum Institute of India's factsheet said one should not get the Covishield vaccine if the person had a severe allergic reaction after a previous dose of this vaccine. Like Bharat Biotech, the SII factsheet also says that if a person is pregnant or plans to become pregnant or is breastfeeding she should tell the healthcare provider before taking the jab. People who have taken another anti-Covid vaccine should not take Covishield.

The ingredients of the Covishield vaccine are "L-Histidine, L-Histidine hydrochloride monohydrate, Magnesium chloride hexahydrate, Polysorbate 80, Ethanol, Sucrose, Sodium chloride, Disodium edetate dihydrate (EDTA), Water for injection," it pointed out.

Side-effects of Covishield

Some of the very common side effects of the vaccines are tenderness, pain, warmth, redness, itching, swelling or bruising where the injection is given, generally feeling unwell, chills or feeling feverish, headache or joint aches.

Covishield is made by Serum Institute of India (SII) and Covaxin is manufactured by Bharat Biotech.

Over 50 lakh people have registered themselves on the Co-WIN portal since the window opened on Monday morning, the Centre said. Nearly 5 lakh beneficiaries above 60 or those aged 45-60 with comorbidities have received the first jab of Covid-19 vaccine till Tuesday evening.

Meanwhile, the govt has permitted all private hospitals to give Covid-19 vaccine if they adhere to the laid down norms and also asked the states and union territories to utilise the optimum capacity of private medical facilities empanelled under three categories. The states and Union Territories were also urged not to store, reserve, conserve or create a buffer stock of the COVID-19 vaccines, the Union Health Ministry said in a statement.

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