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Health experts answer your questions about coronavirus vaccine

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Posted at 7:22 AM, Mar 16, 2021

ABC15 spoke with experts Tuesday morning to answer some of your most pressing questions about the coronavirus vaccine.

The mission of ABC15's Health Insider series is to dive deeper into the things impacting your health and the health of those around you. We're going in-depth with expert advice from people who know it, see it every day in their work and study it. Have a story idea? Contact the team at HealthInsider@abc15.com.

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FAQs: Experts answer your questions about COVID-19 vaccine

Q: If a person has a documented case of COVID-19, when should they get vaccinated? If you have COVID-19, don't know you have it, and get vaccinated, will there be any side effects?

A: If you know that you have COVID or aren't sure, wait out a 10-day quarantine period before even considering getting a vaccination. After you get coronavirus, you'll have natural immunity but that will change over time. We don't think you'll have any side effects if you get vaccinated without realizing you're positive for coronavirus. Sometimes COVID-19 can be present without symptoms. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: I have received my first shot of the Moderna vaccine and I am scheduled to receive the second shot... Going forward, if this is a vaccine that needs to be done annually like the flu vaccine, will I need to continue to receive the Moderna vaccine?

A: We don't necessarily know the answer to that right now. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: Are the Moderna second-shot patients experiencing more COVID-like symptoms than Pfizer second-shot patients?

A: We have had reports after the second dose of the vaccination, but they are short-lived. Between the two of them, I don't think one is more likely to have side effects than the other.- Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: After receiving both shots of the vaccine Pfizer, I had absolutely no reaction. Does that mean the vaccine was NOT effective?

A: It does NOT mean that. About 50% of people who receive a vaccination have no side effects at all and 94% still have the vaccine effectiveness without side effects. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

FAQs: Experts answer your questions about COVID-19 vaccines

Q: There has been nothing mentioned about the people who had COVID and have fully recovered. How safe is it for them to visit with a vaccinated person with both of them not wearing a mask?

A: The CDC recently made recommendations about how vaccinated people can safely visit each other -- two groups who are fully vaccinated, per recommendations, you don't have to wear a mask indoors. We expect more recommendations to come out as time goes on. If someone has COVID or is COVID-recovered, you want to make sure they're out of the quarantine period before visiting them, but practice safety protocols still as you could become infected again and pass it on. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: Does it matter if a person gets 2 doses of the same brand vaccine, or can they get 1 dose of Pfizer and 1 dose of Moderna?

A: We want you to stick with the same product. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: I've had one dose of Moderna. Can I get the new Johnson & Johnson vaccine when it becomes available instead of a second Moderna shot?

A: We want you to stick with the same product. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: I've had more than a few friends experience COVID-like symptoms for Days 1-3 after receiving the second Moderna shot and heard it is much more common after the second shot. My husband and I scheduled to get the second Moderna shot on 3/18 and would like to know what to do, if anything, in preparation for this?

A: Side effects are fairly common. If you were to get side effects, it's typically in the first 12-24 hours. Tylenol is fine to take, just make sure you're getting plenty of rest. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: Many friends have said the second dose was worse than the first dose. Why is that?

A: Your body has been exposed to the vaccine and is having a "reaction," so after the first dose, your body has a stronger immune response. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

FAQs: Experts answer your questions about COVID-19 vaccines

Q: If you’ve had COVID-19 and then got the first dose of Moderna, is it necessary to get a second dose?

A: After having COVID, your body will develop immunity but it will change and go away over time. It's important to get vaccinated even if you've already had COVID. It's recommended to get both doses to be fully vaccinated and complete the series. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: Are reactions more likely with certain vaccines?

A: We haven't seen that one is more likely than the other to create side effects. If you do have side effects, they will resolve, generally within 24-48 hours. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: If I don’t have a reaction, is the vaccine still working?

A: Yes, it definitely is. About 50% of people who get vaccinated won't have side effects. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: I inadvertently got two different vaccines, the Moderna and the Pfizer. Am I fully vaccinated? Do I need to start the whole process over? Should I be worried?

A: We do recommend you stick with the same brand. If you're unaware and inadvertently got a different brand, don't be concerned. It should be acceptable and I wouldn't suggest starting over. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: I hear about the side effects of the vaccine, but they also sound like COVID symptoms. How do I know if I have COVID or am just feeling the aftereffects?

A: Side effects that are common after the vaccine are mild fever, headache, chills, body aches, and sore arm where the vaccine is given. COVID onset symptoms would be more like cough, shortness of breath, loss of taste/smell. If you do develop those, get yourself checked. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

FAQs: Experts answer your questions about COVID-19 vaccines

Q: Is there a time frame for when a vaccine could be developed for children? What would you say to parents who are hesitant to get their kids vaccinated?

A: Studies are underway now, including one in Phoenix. Although children tend to be much less sick and have less significant reactions with COVID-19, to get through the pandemic, we do need to look at kids and how they do with vaccines. - Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

Q: I've heard younger people are more likely to experience vaccine side effects. Why? Does that mean kids will have severe side effects to a vaccine?

A: Young patients do seem to have more side effects than older people. Their immune systems might be more robust and stronger to react to the vaccine in the body, but we will need to see what happens with studies with children. -Dr. Janice Johnston MD, Chief Medical Officer, Redirect Health

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