Covid symptoms differ by vaccination status: ZOE health study

Covid infections come with dozens of different potential symptoms, ranging from mild fatigue to odd symptoms like “Covid tongue”.

Which ones will you encounter personally if you are soon infected? It depends on your vaccination status, suggests the ZOE Health Study, a joint project between health sciences company ZOE and researchers from King’s College London, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard and the University of Stanford.

The project recently shared an updated list of the main Covid symptoms reported by the more than 4 million users of the ZOE Covid Study app, which tracked symptoms of the virus based on data entered daily by users. since 2020.

Here are the most commonly reported Covid symptoms among three vaccination groups – people who have completed their primary series, people who have been injected with a two-dose vaccine and those who are not vaccinated – ranked by frequency at which they were reported.

Common Covid-19 Symptoms by Vaccination Status

Ranked by prevalence among ZOE Health Study app users

Have completed their primary series

1. Sore throat

4. Persistent cough

2. Runny nose

5. Headache

Have a single dose of Covid vaccine

2. Runny nose

5. Persistent cough

2. Sore throat

5. Persistent cough

Four of the five most frequently reported symptoms, including sore throat, runny nose, persistent cough and headache, occurred in all three groups, but their prevalence varied. Unvaccinated people had fevers more often, which did not appear in the top five symptoms of the other groups.

But your vaccination status could affect how many of these symptoms you experience at the same time. People who completed their primary series or received a vaccine dose reported fewer symptoms over a “shorter period of time” compared to unvaccinated people, according to the study.

In a 2021 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, participants who received one or two doses of the Covid vaccine were about 60% less likely to develop symptoms like fever compared to unvaccinated people. Vaccinated participants spent an average of two to six fewer sick days in bed compared to the unvaccinated, the study also found.

The ZOE study highlighted a finding common to all three groups: a noticeable decrease in “traditional” Covid symptoms compared to the initial strain of the virus, such as shortness of breath and loss of smell.

Shortness of breath ranked as the 29th most common symptom among those who completed their primary series and 30th among those who were not vaccinated.

Omicron may have something to do with it: other research has shown the new variant is less likely than previous strains of Covid to cause symptoms like loss of taste or smell.

The ZOE study did not take into account which variant of Covid caused the infections, how many infections were first-time Covid experiences, whether a user received booster doses, patient demographic information and the severity of people’s symptoms.

Inclusion of booster dose data could potentially change the list of symptoms in the study and their potential duration for people who have completed their primary vaccine series.

Protection from your last dose of vaccine drops significantly over time, meaning some people in this study category may be well protected while others might be closer to those who are only partially vaccinated or completely unvaccinated. vaccinated.

Your most effective protection against the virus now includes a new omicron-specific booster injection. It’s more effective against today’s strains of Covid than the original vaccines, and early data suggests it will boost your protective antibodies ahead of an impending wave of the virus this winter.

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