Evaluating the Adverse Events Associated with Three Doses of the COVID-19 Vaccination in Adults in the Western Region of Saudi Arabia: A Cross-Sectional Study

Vaccines (Basel). 2023 Jan 26;11(2):266. doi: 10.3390/vaccines11020266.


The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was one of the countries earliest affected by the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and had taken precautions including compulsory COVID-19 vaccination. Both the ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine (Oxford AstraZeneca) and the BNT162b2 vaccine (Pfizer) were approved by the Saudi Ministry of Health, followed by mRNA-1273 (Moderna), all of which were used for population-wide vaccination. This study aimed to assess the short-term side effects following the COVID-19 vaccinations among participants who had received all three doses in the western region of Saudi Arabia. An online survey was distributed to the participants who received either BNT162b2, ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, or mRNA-1273 vaccines, and the type of side effects and their severity were evaluated. Fatigue and headache, pain at the site of the injection and muscle pain were the most common side effects in all three doses. However, the severity depending on the type of vaccination was significant only for the first and second dose, but not the third dose. In contrast, there was a higher percentage of participants who encountered severe side effects from the third dose compared to the first and second. Nevertheless, the majority of participants described all three doses' side effects to be moderately severe. A future evaluation could be made to access the individual types of vaccination and compare between the side effects of the BNT162b2, ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, and mRNA-1273 vaccines specifically for the booster dose.

Keywords: COVID-19; adverse events; coronavirus; infectious diseases; vaccines.

Grants and funding

This research received no external funding.