"That said, no one should stress too much about getting a shot in the wrong arm. It's not like you're immune on the left side and not on the right side," Goel told me. Immune cells travel throughout the body; there is no midline DMZ'.
READ ON - 'Should Your Flu and COVID Shots Go in Different Arms?'
Welcome to the two-vaccine conundrum.
Tyler Comrie / The Atlantic; Getty
[Extracts below selected by NPW, follwed by a comment from me. Read the full article here: https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2022/09/covid-booster-flu-sho... ]
SEPTEMBER 15, 2022
At a press briefing earlier this month, Ashish Jha, the White House's COVID czar, laid out some pretty lofty expectations for America's immunity this fall. 'Millions' of Americans, he said, would be flocking to pharmacies for the newest version of the COVID vaccine in September and October, at the same appointment where they'd get their yearly flu shot. It's actually a good idea, he told the press. "I really believe this is why God gave us two arms."
I dug around for studies examining the consequences of the one-versus-two-arm choice and found only one: a Canadian trial from 2003, which vaccinated a few hundred sixth-graders at two dozen middle schools against group C meningitis and hepatitis B at the same time... But those results apply only to that group of kids in that setting, with those two specific vaccines...
The CDC advocates for separating vaccination shots by at least one inch of space. Per the agency, if a COVID shot is being given at the same time as a vaccine 'that might be more likely to cause a local injection site reaction,' the shots should be dosed into different limbs, if possible...
doubling up on one arm shouldn't be an issue, Goel [immunologist at the University of Pennsylvania] said: The immune-cell boot camps in these lymph nodes have 'a good amount of real estate'.
"That said, no one should stress too much about getting a shot in the 'wrong' arm. It's not like you're immune on the left side and not on the right side", Goel told me...
Prof Joseph Ana
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[*Note from NPW, moderator: Thanks Joseph. What is notable here is (a) there isn't substantive evidence on which to base a recommendation, (b) the suggestion by Goel not to 'stress too much about getting a shot in the wrong arm' may seem logical but this is just the opinion of one among many immunologists, (c) there is a specific recommendation from the CDC, although it is unclear what the evidence base is for this recommendation, (d) the article itself is an informal, non-peer-reviewed news article, and (e) such informal articles can be unduly influential in terms of their impact on health behaviours.]