What Are the Rarest Side Effects of a Shingles Shot?


Quick Answer

An allergic reaction to the shingles vaccine is one of the rarest side effects, reports Healthline. Signs of an allergic reaction include facial swelling, hives, breathing difficulties, dizziness and heart arrhythmias. Slow pulse and reddening of the skin may occur as well. These symptoms require immediate medical attention.

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Full Answer

Some people are allergic to the ingredients contained in the shingles vaccine, explains Healthline. Anyone who has experienced an allergic reaction to gelatin, neomycin or any other component of the vaccine should not have the shingles vaccine. People with weakened immune systems due to conditions such as cancer and HIV or treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation therapy should avoid the shingles vaccine as well. Other people who should not receive the shingles vaccine include pregnant women and those who take drugs that impact the immune system, such as steroids.

The shingles vaccine normally causes no side effects, states Healthline. When side effects occur, they are generally mild and include soreness, swelling, itching and redness at the site of the injection. Some people experience a headache following the vaccine. A rash resembling chicken pox develops in some people near the site of the vaccination, cautions the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If this occurs, it is best to cover the rash until it resolves.

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