Great Britain

Speak to your GP if you experience a headache between 4 and 28 days after Covid jab

HEADACHES are really common. But while we’ve all had one, there are lots of different types and causes.

In most cases, a headache will go away on its own and isn’t serious.

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There has been talk of headaches in relation to the Covid-19 vaccine.

A mild headache in the first few days after the vaccination is a normal side-effect and not concerning.

As with the flu jab, a mild fever, feeling tired, sore muscles and a headache for a few days are normal.

It is usually a GOOD sign that your immune system is responding to the vaccine and getting ready to kick into gear if you come into contact with the live virus itself.

But if you experience a headache between four and 28 days after the jab that is severe and doesn’t respond to painkillers, speak to your GP.

There has also been a lot of talk about the very rare blood clots that could be linked to AstraZeneca’s jab.

There were 79 cases and 19 deaths after 20million doses were given, a review by the Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency reported last week.

Data shows benefits of having vaccine

While these blood clots are extremely rare, it is important to know the warning signs.

If your headache is new, severe, isn’t alleviated by painkillers such as paracetamol or ibuprofen and gets worse when you lie down or bend forwards, you might need some blood tests.

The same is true if your headache is combined with blurred vision, nausea and vomiting, difficulty speaking, weakness, drowsiness or seizures.

Other symptoms that should be checked are new and unexplained pinprick bruising or bleeding; shortness of breath; chest pain; and leg swelling or constant abdominal pain.

Blood tests can help look for any signs of a potential clot, so if you are worried, don’t delay and speak to your doctor as soon as you can.

Remember, these blood clots are very rare.

Dr Zoe

The current estimate is four in a MILLION.

What’s more, data last week showed your risk of suffering one of these rare clots is actually higher if you catch Covid itself.

Scientists at Oxford University found the risk of cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (a blood clot in the brain) was eight times higher from Covid infection than from having the AstraZeneca jab.

Know the signs

The EMA said people who experience symptoms of clotting within a fortnight of taking the jab should seek immediate medical attention.

They are:

This gives us some really useful perspective and context.

And it further shows the benefits of having the vaccine outweigh any risk, including this very rare, very specific complication.

If you have any concerns or are worried about a headache following your jab, speak to your GP.

Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine gives better protection after one dose than US Pfizer jab

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