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Why vaccine side effects are a good thing

"It is a sign your immune system is actually working and doing its job," said Dr. Hatemi. He said side effects should not be interpreted as a bad thing.

LEXINGTON, S.C. — A recent study found one of the biggest issues holding people back from getting vaccinated is concerns about side effects.

Dr. Lachin Hatemi, owner of Veritas Urgent Care In Lexington, says side effects are actually good. "It is a sign your immune system is actually working and doing its job," Dr. Hatemi said. "So you want to have side effects, actually. You want to have something going on. It's a good positive sign. It should not be interpreted as a bad thing."

Dr. Hatemi and his team have been on the front lines since the start of the pandemic. Based on what's they've experienced with the coronavirus, he strongly urges people to get vaccinated, explaining the side effects are much milder than the disease. "I will not hesitate to get the vaccine; the trade-off is huge," Dr. Hatemi said. "The benefits compared to the side effects is huge."

When it comes to the two-shot vaccines, he explained that people experience symptoms after both injections, but mostly after the second injection. 

RELATED: VERIFY: Here are the most common vaccine side effects

Based on published resources from the CDC and FDA as well as information from doctors, here are the likely responses you'll have to each vaccine: 

Pfizer-BioNTech:

  • Pain at the injection site
  • Tiredness
  • Headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Chills
  • Joint pain
  • Fever

Moderna:

  • Pain at the injection site
  • Tiredness
  • Headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Chills
  • Joint pain
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the same arm as the injection
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Fever

Johnson & Johnson:

  • Pain at the injection site
  • Redness of the skin at the injection site 
  • Swelling at the injection site 
  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Muscle aches
  • Nausea
  • Fever

Dr. Hatemi stressed that there is no benefit of one vaccine over the other saying, "I would say whichever you can get first, go get that vaccine." 

He is fully vaccinated and experienced a few symptoms, including tiredness and fever. "So my family got it, my parents got it, I received it, so I highly recommend it," Dr. Hatemi said. "Despite that there's a chance that you might get side effects, the upside is much bigger than the downside in the vaccine world."

Health officials also say some people have no side effects. 

According to the CDC, you need to see a doctor if the redness or tenderness where you got the shot gets worse after 24 hours. The organization also recommends reaching out to a doctor if your side effects worry you or do not seem to be going away after a few days.