Many people are so worried about Covid vaccine ‘side effects’ they actually feel them even if they get placebo, new research claims
Vast majority of Covid vaccine ‘side effects’ are caused by people’s expectations rather than by the vaccine, Harvard Medical School researchers say, after analyzing the reports of more than 45,000 trial participants.
Various “Systemic” side effects, such as headaches, tiredness, and joint pain were reported in both halves of the focus group: among those who received various Covid vaccines, as well as those who unknowingly received placebo.
After analyzing the reports, scientists from the Boston-based Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center came to the conclusion that the so-called “nocebo effect” – unpleasant sensations caused by anxiety or bad expectations – accounted for three quarters of all reported vaccine side effects.
This report was published in JAMA Network Open. It states that 35% of the placebo recipients experienced side effects upon the first dosage and 32% on the second. Significantly more “adverse events” (AEs) were reported in the vaccine groups, but so called “nocebo responses” accounted for “Systemic AEs were 76% after the initial dose of Covid-19 and 52% following the second..”
The scientists note that, although the reasons for vaccination hesitancy are “Diverse and complex” concerns about potential side effects from the Covid-19 vaccines “It is a key factor” and “These high-nocebo reactions should be considered when administering public vaccines.”
One of the scientists involved in the research, Harvard Medical School professor Ted Kaptchuk, explained the science behind the “nocebo effect.” He pointed out that “Other symptoms may not be present,” such as headache and fatigue, are listed in many information booklets as typical side effects of Covid vaccines.
“There is evidence that such information can cause people to confuse common everyday background sensations with those that are derived from the vaccine. It may also cause anxiety and concern that could make them hyper-aware of bodily reactions to adverse events.,” Kaptchuk said.
This story can be shared on social media