Dreading the second dose

I just got off the phone with someone who received his second dose of Moderna’s vaccine 4 days ago. He describes a severe reaction that almost landed him in the ICU. His symptoms began 8 hours after his (second) shot, and included fever, chills, severe body pain, extreme somnolence, and fatigue. He was zonked out for 4 days in a row, and is now slowly getting his energy back. He is 78 yo and is diabetic but is very well controlled on insulin.

This doctor explains it so well: the second dose of the vaccine pulls the immune system up by its ears and unleashes it like a pack of dogs on the viral spike proteins that the system now recognizes as foreign, thanks to the first dose. In short, the shenanigans are entirely the pissed-off immune system’s doing - all in the absence of a single live virus particle. Quite impressive, actually.

My second dose of Moderna is scheduled for 4/13. I am so looking forward to getting it, and coming down with an immune system sponsored shitstorm for days together. Sounds like fun.

It is almost a shame if, after going to all this trouble, one does not acquire an actual infection and let the immune system go apeshit on the little rascals.

On the positive side, I have 2 weeks of PTO left, so I will at least get paid to suffer.

I’ve also known people who had significant reactions after their second Moderna dose (though not as bad as the one you described). But my husband and I both had our second doses a few weeks ago. The day after the shot we felt kind of fatigued, but nothing horrible. The day after that we were back to normal. So don’t get too stressed over it. Just plan to take it easy the day after.

I just got my second Pfizer vaccination and was really nervous about it ahead of time. I had basically cleared my schedule for a couple days after the appointment, anticipating a reaction. The worse part about the whole thing was the nurse’s inability to deliver a pain-free injection. The first one, I never even felt the needle go in. This second one, I not only felt it quite well, there was even a little extra jolt while the needle was in. I felt fine,otherwise, for the 15-min. waiting period. After my daughter, friend and I left, my hand started to get pins and needles - same side as where I got the injection. I was driving, so I mentioned it and told them someone may need to take over the driving. But after 5 or 10 minutes, the pins and needles went away. I’m sure it was related to the way the needle was inserted, not to the contents of the shot. I started to get a slight headache about 5 or 6 hours later and was tired. I took a couple of ibuprofen and a short nap and that was it. It’s been 4 days now and I’ve been maybe a little more tired at night than usual, but I’m not sure that’s even related. My daughter (33 y.o.) had a little nausea and headache the first night, but nothing much. My friend (68 y.o.) was a little tired that first afternoon/evening, but that’s it.
I think there are far more instances of “little to no reaction” than there are of really bad reactions. Good luck!

My husband and I have both been through two doses (Pfizer) and I was sort of looking forward to a day of “lying in bed, making him bring me ginger ale, knowing I was unlikely to get really sick or it would last more than a day, and binging Bridgerton.” And I had a little headache and was a little tired, and he had a little headache and was a little tired. All it all, it was sort of a let down. Neither of us developed superpowers - we didn’t even get a sick day out of it.

I had absolutely no reaction to either of my Pfizer doses. The wife gets her second dose this week, and I’ll let you know how she fares.

I had my second Moderna dose on Friday. I started getting achy that evening, and I felt like crap all day Saturday. But it wasn’t nearly as bad as the horror stories I’ve been hearing. Today I’m feeling a little residual fatigue, but I’m mostly back to normal.

The day after my second dose, I was miserable. Eventually, I decided to take some cold medicine (generic version of NyQuil). That let me sleep it off, and I woke up mostly back to normal.

Got Moderna #2 four days ago. Worst was the day after, and I was still able to turn in a day’s work — sore arm, the bleah-tired washed-out feeling, and a headache. But nothing horrid. Took 2 aspirins every few hours. My Dad, who is 86, beat me to dose #2 (also Moderna) and said it was nothing whatsoever, unlike the first time which hit him with the sore arm. So it really varies all over the map, and don’t anticipate the worst.

FWIW, and to anybody who may be curious, I received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine a few days ago. As you may or may not know, it’s a vaccine administered in just a single shot.

From injection time up to 8 hours, a very mild soreness at the injection site and mild-ish fatigue ( though didn’t get my usual amount of sleep the night before )

From 8 hours on ( say evening/dinner time ) I felt noticeable tiredness as though I took a couple of Unisoms. I had about 2 beers just after dinner time while watching a movie. I was VERY tired and decided to call it a night just past 10 PM. I wanted to get to bed so bad I just blew off brushing and flossing my teeth in favor of a flouride mouth rinse.

Though I was tired as all get-out, I just couldn’t get to sleep. Many thoughts racing through my mind and I felt myself tensing up and trying to un-tense myself. I could feel and hear my pulse thump-thumping on the side of my head and neck that was on the pillow. I could almost…but not quite drift off. Getting irritated, I look at my Fitbit: Heart rate: 137-140 BPM. No wonder. No trouble breathing, so no panic, no mental tug-of-war to go to the ER. Around 3-4 AM, brief lapses of fitful sleep. Looked at fitbit; 125 BPM. Frequent need to urinate. Thirsty thirsty thirsty. Moderate nausea and a feeling of indigestion. Thirsty but I drink as much water as I feel my gut will tolerate. Fitful sleep till 6:30 AM. My hair, T-shirt, pillowcase moist with sweat. I get up, change my shirt, got another pillow, sat on living room couch under the ceiling fan to dry off and cool off. 15 minutes later, I’m no longer hot, maybe a bit chilly. Nausea much subsided. Went back to bed at 06:45 and slept soundly till a few minutes before noon. Resting heart rate down to the high 90s BPM.

I really wanted to begin my day ( at noon! ) with a cup of coffee, but the last thing my body needed was a stimulant. Still kinda’ tired ( not quite 6 actual hours of sleep in 14 hours of trying ) but wanted to get out and about, sun and fresh air. No more nausea but still not much of an appetite either. By the evening/night, resting pulse down to the low 80s. Went to bed at 10:30, woke up at just before 10 AM feeling great. Heart rate 72. Had my appetite back. All good. As far as I know.

If I’m a worse case scenario, you all should be good to go.

The Quarantine Zone has a big thread about this. I’ll report this one to maybe be moved there.
I felt a little fatigue the day after my second Pfizer dose, but that was it. No aches, no pains, no fevers.

Reactions to all three vaccines have been so widely varied that it will do no good to stress about what might happen. Both my parents got Moderna, my mom felt sick that night and was fine by morning, my dad had no symptoms other than feeling a little tired. The serious reactions your friend described seem more of an outlier than most people.

My two (adult) children got the J&J vaccine and reported the same thing: they felt lousy, but could NOT sleep! Weird. They recovered very quickly, though.

Moving this to the quarantine zone.

My first dose of Moderna was nothing but a sore arm, the second one hit on day 2 which was mild flu like and I slept through a good portion of it, the following day i was on top of the world.

The day after my second shot of Moderna felt like a very mild hangover, like maybe one glass of wine over my limit. Totally fine the following day. Wife’s experience was the same.

First Pfizer dose- had some pretty unusual fatigue during the afternoon/evening afterward for about six hours.

Second dose- nothing at all. My arm was a little bit sore for about a week, but that was it.

My wife on the other hand, had almost no reaction to the first dose, but got the full panoply of symptoms for the second- fever, chills, fatigue, headache, etc…

So your mileage may vary, and probably will. What I’m curious to find out is whether a person’s reaction to the vaccine is indicative of how sick you’d have got with COVID or not.

I’m 66 and got the Moderna shot. The day after my second one, I had mild headache and mild tiredness, no fever, no chills or anything else.

I’ve not heard of anyone who has your friend’s reaction, OP.

I’m 63 and my second shot did indeed send me to bed for a few days, but it was crappy weather, I’m retired and I wanted to pamper myself.

If I was still working, I would have taken some ibuprofen and gone to work. I would have complained a bunch, but that’s because I like to bitch.

I use variously ibuprofen or acetaminophen copiously every day because of arthritis and back pain. But in light of the discussions about it w.r.t. the vaccine, I refrained from 4 days before each shot until a week after. (ETA: I did the same before and after last year’s flu shot too, which was when I first heard about these interactions with vaccines.)

So I was achy because of that during those times. But I could tell the extra achiness from the shots (the 2nd shot in particular) apart from that because it was different. And the achiness from the 2nd shot was moderate, but far from dreadful, and only lasted one day.

I had my first jab of Moderna on 4/2, and I’m still under the weather eight days later. Severe fatigue, body ache, nausea, diarrhea, sleep disruption, chills/shivering, and that’s just today. I know my reaction is atypical though, and it’s pretty likely I picked up an unrelated virus somehow. I guess?