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Vaccine recipients share what they’ve experienced after getting coveted shots

Published: Jan. 29, 2021 at 7:39 PM HST|Updated: Jan. 29, 2021 at 7:47 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - After getting the COVID-19 vaccine, some have reported feeling a “bee sting” at the injection site. Others say they feel tired or feverish for a few hours.

Others have felt nothing at all.

And doctors say they’re all expected responses to getting the shot.

“Out of everyone I know, I got hit with the hardest with side effects,” said respiratory therapist Ikaika Stricker, who experienced body aches and fatigue for three days and after the second shot.

“I had chills body aches, cold, congestion as you can hear and mine has been sitting with me for about a week and a half,” said Stricker.

“I was willing to face the punishment of whatever the vaccine gave me. I just didn’t anticipate it this long.”

Fellow respiratory therapist Scott Fisher says his side effects weren’t as bad and he felt groggy after the second shot for a day.

“It really is a heavy hit and we’re dealing with it. We’re just trying to get vaccinated so we can be a better aid to the public,” said Fisher.

Adam Dolak, general manager of Hawaii Kai Retirement, said there were no reactions reported at the facility.

He says about 400 kupuna and workers got the first dose and saw no significant illness or workers calling out sick. They are gearing up for the second dose next week.

“We have been alerted to keep an eye out that the second dose does tend to have more of a sensitivity,” said Dolak.

“But that’s normal. That’s actually what we want to happen.”

EMS Chief Dr. Jim Ireland has been monitoring Oahu’s mass vaccination clinics. With thousands vaccinated, he says there’ve been very few reactions. In Hawaii, there have been no life-threatening reactions.

“So when I’m doing very, very rough numbers, we’ve had to use an ambulance one out of 2,000 to 4,000 vaccines,” Ireland said. “It’s really, really safe,” he added.

He says be prepared for a sore arm the next day and maybe body aches and fatigue. He says some people have reported feeling more side effects after the second dose.

“It’s mounting an immune response against that foreign substance which means your body will react to COVID if you ever get exposed. It essentially means the vaccine is working,” he said.

Doctors say if you are concerned about the vaccine, plan to take the next day off from work just in case and have Tylenol on hand. They say Benadryl can also be taken if there’s itching or rash.

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