Very common (affecting more than 1 in 10 people at each dose):
- redness, pain, hardness and/or swelling at the injection site.
Common (affecting up to 1 in 10 people at each dose):
- feeling sick or being sick (nausea and vomiting)
- raised temperature (fever)
Uncommon (affecting up to 1 in 100 people at each dose):
- swollen glands (lymphadenopathy)
- feeling generally unwell
- muscle pains (myalgia)
Rare (affecting up to 1 in 1000 people at each dose):
It is quite common for teenagers to have panic attacks before vaccination, or to faint during vaccination. These should not be confused with reactions to the vaccination itself.
As with any vaccine, medicine or food, there is a very small chance of a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis). Anaphylaxis is different from less severe allergic reactions because it causes life-threatening breathing and/or circulation problems. It is always extremely serious but can be treated with adrenaline. Healthcare workers who give vaccines know how to do this.
In the UK between 1997 and 2003 there were a total of 130 reports of anaphylaxis following ALL immunisations. Around 117 million doses of vaccines were given in the UK during this period. This means that the overall rate of anaphylaxis is around 1 in 900,000.
If you are concerned about any reactions that occur after vaccination, consult your doctor. In the UK you can report suspected vaccine side effects to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) through the Yellow Card Scheme.
You can also contact the MHRA to ask for data on Yellow Card reports for individual vaccines. See more information on the Yellow Card scheme and monitoring of vaccine safety.