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  • Zoster (Shingles)
  • Vaccine Safety

What should I advise my patients about adverse reactions after Shingrix?

Before vaccination, providers should counsel Shingrix recipients about common expected systemic and local adverse reactions (see related question). Reactions to the first dose do not strongly predict reactions to the second dose.

If a patient experiences side effects, any local (e.g., redness, pain, swelling at the injection site) or systemic (e.g., fever, chills, headache, body aches) reactions typically go away within 72 hours after vaccination. It is generally not recommended to take medication for pain or fever (e.g., acetaminophen or ibuprofen) before vaccination; however, such medications may be taken to alleviate local or systemic symptoms after vaccination, if needed. Shingrix recipients should be encouraged to complete the series even if they experienced a grade 3 reaction to the first dose.

Last reviewed: March 9, 2022

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