Vaccine Effects On Blood Sugar
Vaccines can cause temporary spikes in blood sugar levels within 48 hours of the injection. This is because the vaccines can cause side effects that increase blood sugar levels.
It is important for anyone with diabetes to closely monitor their blood sugar levels for a few days after receiving the vaccine.
safe and effective for helping prevent COVID-19.
There are some differences between the vaccines. For example, Pfizer-BioNTech has approval for use in people over 12 years old, but Moderna and Johnson & Johnson have approval for individuals over 18 years old.
All the vaccines become fully effective around 2 weeks after the shot. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine only requires one shot, whereas Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna require two shots.
There are some signs that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is less effective at helping prevent COVID-19 in people with diabetes.
It may not be possible to choose a vaccine due to limited supplies across the U.S. But people with diabetes can be confident that all three vaccines are safe and effective at helping prevent COVID-19.
When Can I Stop Wearing A Mask
According to the CDC, once you’ve been vaccinated you no longer need to wear a face mask, except in spaces where it’s required by law. If you are fully vaccinated, you can begin spending time with others who are fully vaccinated without wearing masks.
That said, some people may choose to keep wearing masks. Masks will continue helping to shield you from the virus and new variants of COVID , and will reduce your chances of spreading COVID-19 to people around you . As more people get vaccinated, the number of people carrying the virus in your community will decrease, bringing the risk of infection down.
While we await further information and research on COVID vaccines, protect yourself and those around you.
Dr. Francine Kaufman is Chief Medical Officer at Senseonics, a diabetes device company and Distinguished Professor Emerita of Pediatrics and Communications at the Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California.
Worries About Getting Vaccinated With Diabetes
Larry Fisher, PhD, professor of family community medicine at the University of California at San Francisco , conducted a survey in late fall 2020 before any vaccine was yet available. The survey asked whether PWDs would get vaccinated if they could. He told DiabetesMine that 70 percent of more than 800 people surveyed said yes.
Of the 30 percent of survey respondents who said no, the leading reasons were:
- do not trust vaccines in general
- do not trust what the government does
- potential long-term effects
- not sure that the scientists know what theyre doing
- previous personal experience with vaccines
When you dig into that, the numbers are small, Fisher said. I think a better way to say it is that for type 1 and type 2 adults, about 70 percent said they were all for it. Its likely higher once we see more people sharing stories about getting a vaccine.
Fisher said more research and peer review will be happening in early 2021 before the full results of his survey are finalized and published.
Meanwhile, when DiabetesMine asked our online community in late December 2020 whether they would get vaccinated if they could, more than 300 people responded.
The majority said yes, but some did have concerns, mostly about the vaccines being so new and as yet untested in the long term.
Heres what some members of our community said about getting vaccinated:
She kept her insulin pump on a 200 percent raised basal rate, taking insulin correction doses as needed every 3 hours.
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Vaccines And Blood Sugar Levels
Taking the vaccine may make your blood sugar levels go up.
When you get the vaccine, your body will start to produce whats called an immune response. This is nothing to worry about. Your body is just reacting to the vaccine because the vaccine is new to you.
Your body needs energy to produce this immune response, so it may release some extra glucose . This is what leads to your blood sugar increasing.
Why Vaccines Are Important For You
- Diabetes, even if well managed, can make it harder for your immune system to fight infections, so you may be at risk for more serious complications from an illness compared to people without diabetes.
- Some illnesses, like influenza, can raise your blood glucose to dangerously high levels.
- People with diabetes have higher rates of hepatitis B than the rest of the population. Outbreaks of hepatitis B associated with blood glucose monitoring procedures have happened among people with diabetes.
- People with diabetes are at increased risk for death from pneumonia , bacteremia and meningitis .
Answer a few questions to find out which vaccines you may need. Take your customized printout to your next medical appointment.
There may be other vaccines recommended for you based on your lifestyle, travel habits, and other factors. Talk to your healthcare professional about which vaccines are right for you.
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Continue Medications And Preventive Care
- Continue your medicines and do not change your treatment plan without talking to your healthcare provider.
- Have at least a 30-day supply of prescription and non-prescription medicines. Talk to a healthcare provider, insurer, or pharmacist about getting an extra supply of prescription medicines, if possible, to reduce your trips to the pharmacy.
- Follow your current treatment plan to keep your medical condition under control.
- When possible, keep preventive care and other routine healthcare appointments with your provider. Check with your provider about safety precautions for office visits and ask about telemedicine or remote healthcare visit options.
- Learn about stress and coping. You may feel increased stress during this pandemic. Fear and anxiety can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions.
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How Diabetes Canada Helps
During the pandemic, we have adapted many of our services to support people affected by diabetes with the information, advocacy and connections they need.
- 1-800-BANTING: Offering expert personalized medical advice by Certified Diabetes Educators and guiding patients to resources and supports for medications, supplies and government programs for diabetes
- Website: Maintaining this page with key information about diabetes and COVID-19
- Videos: Broadcasting weekly videos for patients called Ask the Experts and educating healthcare providers on diabetes and COVID-19 via webinars.
- Multilingual resources: Delivering educational content in multiple languages. Urging health officials to update COVID-19 vaccine priority lists to include people with diabetes.
- Collaborating with Health Canada and other partners to ensure the security of the Canadian insulin supply.
- Continuing to advocate for fair access to diabetes medications, devices and supplies for Canadians everywhere. Virtual D-Camps for kids with type 1 diabetes and their families.
- Virtual Conferences: Delivering online content for people affected by diabetes and healthcare providers.
Diabetes And The Risk Of Covid
In January of 2021, the CDC initially categorized people with type 2 diabetes at increased risk of more severe illness, adding the condition to the priority list for vaccination. After months of petitions by diabetes organizations and advocates, type 1 diabetes was finally added to their list of medical conditions that predispose adults to more severe COVID-19 illness. Massachusetts finally added T1D to the state’s priority list for medical conditions on April 2.
NBC-10 Boston asked UMass Diabetes Center of Excellence Co-Director, Dr. David Harlan for his thoughts on the CDC’s decision.
“Recent studies have clearly shown that people with type 1 diabetes have as great, or even perhaps slightly greater risk of severe COVID infection as those with type 2 diabetes,” said Dr. Harlan. “All of my patients with diabetes are asking when they can get the vaccine.”
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Im Glad I Got Vaccinated
âI got my COVID-19 vaccine! I have had some arm, knee, and foot pain but nothing bad. I felt tired after getting my first shot.
âThe only thing that happened after my second shot was a sore arm for a few days then that was gone! There were no other side effects from the second shot. For me, getting the Pfizer vaccine was a very good experience.â â Debbie A.
How Should Health Care Professionals Talk About The Covid
Health care professionals play an important role in promoting the COVID-19 vaccine to patients who have diabetes.
People with underlying conditions, such as type 1 or type 2 diabetes, are more likely to become severely ill or die from contracting the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , these individuals who develop COVID-19 may require a hospital stay, a ventilator to improve breathing, and intensive care unit services.
Because health care professionals are considered trusted sources of information, talking with patients who have diabetes about the importance of receiving the COVID-19 vaccine may influence behavior.
Tackling Vaccine Hesitancy
Because widespread vaccination is critical to stopping the pandemic, health care professionals should spend time addressing any feelings of hesitancy or worry in their patients with diabetes. Talking with your patients is important because vaccine endorsement by a trusted health care professional could potentially motivate some people to get vaccinated.
Rather than lecturing patients, health care professionals should engage with them in open, nonjudgmental, two-way conversations about why they feel hesitant. Health care professionals should also validate patients concerns or fears and correct any false beliefs or misperceptions. If comfortable, you may want to tell your patients about your reasons for getting vaccinated.
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What Should People With Diabetes Ask Their Providers About The Boosters
If you have questions about whether you should get a booster, talk to your healthcare provider, along with reading the CDC website for the most current updates for patients on boosters.
A healthcare provider can guide you on the timing of the booster and how to treat any of the mild side effects that may occur after vaccination, says Gabbay.
Gabbay says a person with diabetes should consider asking these questions, which are edited for brevity:
- How much extra protection will I receive from a booster, and is it enough to outweigh the negative side effects I may experience?
- How many boosters do you expect that I will receive, considering the first is coming after six months? Will boosters be more likely for people with compromised immune systems?
- If I decide not to get a booster, what are my risks?
- Are there specific concerns with the boosters for people with diabetes?
- How does having diabetes affect the efficacy of the vaccine over time, and for those who may or may not choose to get a booster?
When Will People With Diabetes Get The Vaccine
People with “high-risk” medical conditions, which include diabetes or obesity, are now eligible for vaccination in every state in the US. Previously, only type 2 diabetes and obesity were recommended for prioritization during early phases of vaccination however, the CDC recently classified type 1 diabetes as a high-risk medical condition. We urge you to get vaccinated as soon as you are eligible. To learn about the CDCs recommended stages of vaccination and where you fall in the vaccine line, read Dr. Francine Kaufmans When Can I Get the COVID Vaccine if I Have Diabetes?
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What Should I Expect At My Vaccine Appointment
When you get your COVID vaccine, youll receive a paper card that says which vaccine you received, and when and where you received it. Youll also get a fact sheet with more information about the vaccine, its benefits, and its side effects. After you get your injection, youll be asked to stay on-site for a short period of time so that healthcare professionals can monitor your bodys reaction.
Why Is It More Than Important For People With Diabetes To Take The Covid
People with diabetes and other underlying conditions like heart diseases and hypertension should take the vaccine shots as soon as possible. The chairman of Dr. A. Ramachandrans Diabetes Hospitals, A. Ramachandran, states that underlying medical conditions put people at higher risks of contracting coronavirus. He further said that diabetes is an age-related health risk that can intensify coronavirus infection.
It has been estimated that around 80% of deaths during the pandemic have been among patients with comorbidities like heart diseases, diabetes, hypertension, etc. Studies show that out of every 1000 covid-19 patients in Chennai, mortality rate was twice in people with diabetes as compared to those without it. Additionally, complications were much higher in people with diabetes.
As an after-covid recommendation for people with diabetes, people should keep a regular tab on their blood sugar levels, get into moderate exercise, and follow a good diet plan. However, everything must be under the guidance of professional experts.
Conclusively, people with diabetes or any other underlying medical condition should get vaccinated as soon as possible. Early vaccination can keep them protected from contracting coronavirus. However, even after getting vaccinated, you must follow the social distancing norms and preventive measures like wearing masks, washing hands often, etc.
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Do Covid Vaccines And Diabetes Mix Well
People with diabetes in each of the vaccine trials have not reported major side effects. Overall, some clinical trial participants have reported mild side effects of the vaccines, much like how some people experience injection-site soreness, mild lethargy, a low-grade fever after other vaccines. These mild reactions some people experience after vaccines are typical and not cause for alarm they are a result of the immune system going into action as purposely triggered by the vaccine, creating the ability to fight against the actual virus were a person to be exposed to it.
In the UK, two healthcare workers who received the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine during the initial general population rollout experienced severe allergic reactions for which they administered adrenaline autoinjectors. Both individuals had a history of severe anaphylactoid reactions for which they carry adrenaline autoinjectors anyway, so if you are a person who does tend to experience severe allergic reactions, it is recommended that you not receive the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine at this time. Other vaccines may be better indicated for your use. If you do not have a history of severe allergic reactions, there is no reason to expect you will experience one from a vaccine.
If you have specific concerns or worries, make sure you speak to a healthcare provider you trust.
Managing Vaccine Side Effects Theyre Normal
Because of the mild symptoms experienced by some, it is important to stay vigilant about blood sugar levels for the first 24 to 48 hours after receiving the vaccine. These side effects are very typical to every vaccine and include fatigue, muscle aches, headaches, and injection site soreness. The symptoms may also impact blood sugar levels sending them slightly high or slightly low so check levels frequently, stay hydrated, and be familiar with your sick day routine. The mild symptoms your child may experience after the vaccine are significantly safer and more easily managed than potentially getting COVID-19 itself.
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Why Is It Important To Get The Vaccine If You Have Diabetes
Its quite clear that people with diabetes do much worse than people without diabetes in terms of their outcomes with COVID, says Gabbay.
Early in the pandemic, a study from the CDC, published in July 2020 in the Morbidity andMortality Weekly Report, found that roughly half of people who died from COVID-19 under age 65 had diabetes.
Two studies from the United Kingdom showed similar risk. A study published in October 2020 in The LancetDiabetes & Endocrinology found that people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes were 2 to 3 times more likely to die from COVID-19 in the hospital than people without diabetes. And a study published in December 2020 in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology found that people with type 1 or type 2 were more likely to die or to be treated in the intensive care unit for COVID-19.
More recently, in a study published in September 2021 in Diabetes Care, researchers analyzed data from 18 months into the pandemic, and found that 30 to 40 percent of people who died or experienced severe outcomes from COVID-19 had type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Once hospitalized, a quarter of all patients with diabetes are likely to die, the researchers concluded.
The protective effects of vaccines are critical for people with diabetes who are at increased risk for severe and deadly infection from COVID-19, says Justin Gregory, MD, assistant professor of pediatrics at Vanderbilt Childrens Hospital in Nashville, Tennessee, who has type 1 diabetes.