ugc_banner

Flu and COVID-19 jabs safe when given at same time: Study

WION Web Team
NEW DELHIUpdated: Oct 01, 2021, 09:57 AM IST

Representative image Photograph:(Reuters)

Story highlights

The trial took place across 12 NHS sites in England and Wales and it looked at the side-effects and immune responses when 679 people had their second shot of Pfizer or AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in one arm followed by one of three flu vaccines in the other

The results of a clinical trial have concluded that flu jabs are safe to give at the same time as the Pfizer or AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines. The study discovered that while some people experienced more side effects with certain combinations of flu and COVID-19 shots, the ailments were mainly mild to moderate.

The most common side effects were pain at the injection site and temporary fatigue, headache or muscle pain.

The trial took place across 12 NHS sites in England and Wales and it looked at the side-effects and immune responses when 679 people had their second shot of Pfizer or AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in one arm followed by one of three flu vaccines in the other.

As a part of the study, the volunteers were divided into two age groups, the under-65s and the 65s and over.

At their first appointment, the volunteers were given either a COVID-19 shot and a flu shot, or a Covid shot and a placebo. 

The older group received the FluAd jab made by Seqirus in the UK, while the younger group had either Flublok from Sanofi or Flucelvax, also from Seqirus.

As per the blood tests on the trial volunteers, there was no negative impact on the immune responses to either flu or COVID-19 vaccines when the shots were given one after the other, in opposite arms. 

However, one of the flu vaccines, FluBlok by Sanofi, appeared to be more potent when it was given alongside the Pfizer jab.

Dr Rajeka Lazarus, who is the lead scientist on the trial and a consultant in infectious diseases and microbiology at University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust, said that the results, which are preliminary and not yet peer-reviewed, were “a really positive step”.

“We don’t expect, with booster doses, that there would be an impact on how well the Covid vaccine works,” she said.