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An American nurse who experienced severe but transient symptoms after vaccination urged doctors to reassure patients that certain side effects are not unexpected.
The Pfizer vaccine for COVID-19 is the one that Australians are slated to start receiving in February.
To inform rather than alarm, the woman described her short-lived but distressing side effects in the Journal of the American Medical Association, JAMA Internal Medicine.
Dr Kristen Choi, from the School of Nursing at the University of California, Los Angeles. 
She did this so that doctors could be prepared to reassure patients, who report similar experiences, that the side effects are not unexpected, are transient and signal an effective immune response.
The account, by Kristen Choi, from the School of Nursing at the University of California, Los Angeles, has just been listed at number one in the top 10 articles read in December on the international website Medscape.
When Dr Choi volunteered for the Pfizer trial in the US in August and September last year, she didnt know if she had received the active vaccine or a placebo.
Apart from a little soreness at the injection site, her first jab was uneventful. But when she returned a few weeks later for the second, she began to experience worrying symptoms.
My arm quickly became painful at the injection site, much more than the first time. By the end of the day, I felt light-headed, chilled, nauseous, and had a splitting headache. I went to bed early and fell asleep immediately.
Around midnight, I woke up feeling worse feverish and chilled, nauseated, dizzy, and hardly able to lift my arm from muscle pain at the injection site.
My temperature was 37.4 degrees. I tossed and turned, sleeping little during the rest of the night. When I woke up again at 5:30am, I felt hot. Burning.
Dr Choi’s temperature had risen to 40.5 degrees and feeling afraid, she took some paracetamol. Suspecting she had received the vaccine, she began to read the trial and patient information as she waited for the research office to open at 9 am.
By then she had cooled down to 38.9 °C and the research nurse said: a lot of people have reactions after the second injection. Keep monitoring your symptoms and call us if anything changes.
Her fever hovered around 37.5 degrees for the rest of the day. By the next morning, all symptoms had gone except for pain at the injection site.
To my surprise, the nurse was right about how common my symptoms were, Dr Choi says.