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Avera Medical Minute: Recipients share their experiences after receiving second COVID-19 vaccine dose

Published: Jan. 24, 2021 at 10:52 PM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) -

Trailblazing Healthcare workers who received both COVID vaccine doses want to reassure others about getting the vaccine and share the facts.

When Avera Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Jawad Nazir received his first shot, but that was just the beginning of building his immunity.

“Getting the second dose, get you to that 95% efficacy, which protects you against severe disease, so I was looking forward to it. I was like, when can I get my second dose,” said Dr. Nazir.

Nazir mentally prepared himself for his immune system to kick into gear.

“So I had a little soreness in my arm. And after about six, seven hours maybe I felt a little fatigued, had a mild headache, felt slightly feverish,” said Dr. Nazir.

Pain reliever helped relieve the discomfort the first day. Day two was better.

“And by the third day, I was perfectly back to normal,” said Dr. Nazir.

Avera Hospitalist Dr. Tamera Sturm prepared for possible symptoms after the second COVID shot.

“I had aches and my legs and aches and my arms, and at the end of the day, I had short-lived chills and sweats that result. So I was feeling pretty fatigued that following day after the vaccine but the next day I was back normal and doing just fine,” said Dr. Sturm.

Both doctors say their responses were different from their first and second shot.

“Some of the symptoms are actually a manifestation of our immune system reacting to create those protective antibodies,” said Dr. Nazir.

And just as every person is unique, so is their body’s response. According to the CDC, reactions could include pain or swelling at the injection site, fever, chills, tiredness and headache.

“So it doesn’t mean that the people who did not get any symptoms, did not get the immune response. We all react differently to these vaccines,” said Dr. Nazir.

Feeling slightly unwell for a couple of days is better than the alternative.

“From what I’ve seen, day in and day out being a hospitalist and in ICU etc, you just don’t want that for patients and families,” said Dr. Sturm.

Sturm wants to share her story to dispel any fears.

“Especially with social media there are going to be a lot of myths and misconceptions and I think as a health care worker, it’s our responsibility to be an individual who did get a vaccine and share their story and multiple stories,” said Dr. Sturm.

With more South Dakotans receiving the vaccine, there is hope.

“By getting vaccination you not only protect yourself but you also become part of the solution to end this pandemic,” said Dr. Nazir.

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