Moderna vaccine causing delayed rash in some recipients, small study says

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Some recipients of Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine experience delayed rashes that can take about six days to heal, according to a small study published March 3 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Researchers from Boston-based Massachusetts General Hospital examined 12 patients who developed a rash at the injection site eight or more days after receiving their first dose of Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine. Their symptom onset ranged from four days after receiving their first dose to up to 11 after receiving their first dose.

The patients' rashes varied in size and severity. Ice and antihistamines treated most patients' rashes, but some required corticosteroids and one erroneous case was treated with antibiotics, according to the study.

Half of the patients experienced a rash after receiving their second dose around 48 hours after getting the shot, but none of them experienced a reaction that was more severe than their first dose reaction.

"Whether you've experienced a rash at the injection site right away or this delayed skin reaction, neither condition should prevent you from getting the second dose of the vaccine," Kimberly Blumenthal, MD, the study's lead author and co-director of Massachusetts General Hospital's  clinical epidemiology program, said in a news release. "Our immediate goal is to make physicians and other care providers aware of this possible delayed reaction, so they are not alarmed, but instead well-informed and equipped to advise their patients accordingly."

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