Shingrix Side Effects: Pain, Redness, Headache

Shingrix Side Effects. Last month, the Food and Drug Administration approved Shingrix (by GlaxoSmithKline) for the prevention of shingles among adults aged 50 and over. This approval came after a clinical trial involving 38,000 people which demonstrated the efficacy of the vaccine. In this trial, participants who were given Shingrix demonstrated efficacy against shingles greater than 90%. Moreover, follow-ups over a period of four years has shown the sustained efficacy of the vaccine.

Shingrix was developed specifically to overcome the age-related decline in immunity to shingles (herpes zoster) which, currently, affects 1 in 3 people in the United States. Want more vaccine side effects?

Shingrix side effects

So now that we know that Shingrix is effective in combating shingles among those aged 50 years old and up, what are the Shingrix side effects that prospective users should be aware of?

GlaxoSmithKline lists the following side effects for the vaccine:

The most common side effects are pain, redness, and swelling at the injection site, muscle pain, tiredness, headache, shivering, fever, and upset stomach.

Those side effects are not deal breakers, eh? Yeah, not at all. However, it is important to note that you should still ask your health care provider whether Shingrix is right for you. After all, remember that it has a 90% efficacy rate. That sounds very high and it is indeed very high but, on the flipside, it also means that it does not work in one out of ten people.

In fact, this is what GlaxoSmithKline says in its safety information for the vaccine:

  • Vaccination with SHINGRIX may not protect all individuals.
  • You should not receive SHINGRIX if you are allergic to any of its ingredients or had an allergic reaction to a previous dose of SHINGRIX.

By the way, it is worth noting that aside from getting the FDA approval for shingles, Shingrix also has earned the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control. The Washington Post reports:

In a rare move, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices also recommended, by an 8-to-7 vote, that the new Shingrix vaccine be preferred over the existing Zostavax vaccine because it provides far greater protection and is expected to prevent significant disease, especially among the elderly.

Shingrix is the first new vaccine for shingles in a decade, and it’s the first time the panel is recommending that adults between 50 and 59 be vaccinated — a group that numbers about 42 million Americans. The panel also recommended that anyone who previously was vaccinated with the Zostavax vaccine be revaccinated with the new vaccine — an estimated 20 million people.

“This represents a major advance for people who want to be protected against the disease and its complications,” said Kathleen Dooling, a medical officer with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The new vaccine has the potential to prevent tens of thousands of cases of shingles and thousands of cases of its most common complication, a debilitating nerve pain, she said.

Shingrix Side Effects. Posted 13 November 2017.