is delivered to your body and to your cells,” infectious disease expert Amesh A. Adalja, MD, senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, tells Health.
Lipids “help keep the mRNA intact and stable until it gets into your body and starts doing its work,” Dr. Schaffner says. After that, they dissolve and are removed by your body. Because of that, lipids are “unique” to this type of vaccine, Jamie Alan, PhD, an assistant professor of pharmacology and toxicology at Michigan State University, tells Health. But, she says, “the rest of the ingredients are very common in vaccines.”
Allergies are your body’s inappropriate immune response against something harmless — pollen, cat hair, foods like peanuts, fish, and the like. Right now, there’s no evidence that people with mild allergies, which are quite common, need to avoid the vaccine. In many cases, the results of this overreaction are mild symptoms such as a runny nose, coughing, or sneezing.
But the thing about allergies is that they are specific: a reaction to one substance does not guarantee a reaction to another. On Monday, the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology released guidance stating that people with common allergies “are no more likely than the general public to have an allergic reaction to the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine.”
Guidelines released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention identify only one group of people who might not want to get Pfizer’s vaccine: those with a known history of severe allergic reactions to an ingredient in the injection.
People with a history of anaphylaxis to any other substance, including other vaccines or injectable drugs, can still get the vaccine, but they should consult their health care providers and be monitored for 30 minutes after getting their shots. Everyone else, like people with mild or no allergies, need to wait only 15 minutes before leaving the vaccination site.