December 2, 2022

Vaccinees are told to go easy on paracetamol


GEORGE TOWN: As more people get vaccinated to stem the Covid-19 epidemic, paracetamol is selling like hot cakes because many believe it could ease the side effects of the vaccine.

However, a medical expert at a vaccination center warned the public to only take paracetamol when needed.

Dr Kesevan Vijasangar, 29, said a single dose of two paracetamol tablets should not be taken more than four times a day.

“All types of paracetamol can be taken, but take note of the dosage.

“Paracetamol is toxic to the liver if taken in excess.

“Anyone with underlying pre-existing liver conditions should also be more careful when taking paracetamol,” he added.

Dr Kesevan said paracetamol is highly recommended by many public health authorities to counter the side effects.

“It is common to have body aches and fever after being vaccinated.

“Some people will have side effects that can last up to a week, but different people will have different reactions to the vaccines.

“It is normal for people to take two tablets equivalent to 1 g of paracetamol, four times a day.

“However, if they experience other side effects such as shortness of breath, chest pain, palpitations, generalized swelling or severe itching, they should seek medical attention immediately,” he said.

Pharmacist Lim Chee Mun, 36, said sales of paracetamol had increased since May, when the government accelerated the vaccination process.

“Many customers have purchased paracetamol because they are concerned about experiencing side effects from the vaccine.

“It is normal to have a fever, body aches or headache a day or two after being vaccinated.

“These are the common side effects of the vaccine, because it is about the reaction of our body to the vaccine.

“We inform our customers that taking paracetamol at its normal dose is safe if they experience mild side effects.

“If the side effects are unbearable, they should see a doctor,” she said.

Lim said some people would buy anti-diarrhea medication, or the Lian Hua Qing Wen capsule – a traditional medicine used to reduce heat and relieve colds, coughs and phlegm.

“Vitamin C sales have also increased since the Covid-19 epidemic.

“Some customers have purchased countertop cooling water, but we are not sure how effective it is.

“We are also lacking in medical devices such as oximeters and Covid-19 RTK-Antigen self-test kits,” she added.

Content creator Sarah Lee, 29, said she was shocked to learn that paracetamol was out of stock at a few convenience stores.

“I went to at least three convenience stores in George Town, but they were sold out.

“A lot of people bought paracetamol to protect themselves because they feared they would feel sick after being vaccinated.

“Luckily I managed to get a tape of it at a gas station,” she said.