No Evidence That Analgesic Use after COVID-19 Vaccination Negatively Impacts Antibody Responses

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Uptake of mRNA vaccines, especially booster immunizations, against COVID-19 has been lower than hoped, perhaps in part due to their reactogenicity. Analgesics might alleviate symptoms associated with vaccination, but they might also impact immune responses. We semiquantitatively measured Ab responses following COVID-19 vaccination in 2354 human participants surveyed about analgesic use after vaccination. Participants who used nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or acetaminophen after vaccination showed elevated Ab levels against the receptor-binding domain of Spike protein relative to those who did not use analgesics. This pattern was observed for both mRNA-1273 and BNT162b2 and across age groups. Participants who used analgesics more frequently reported fatigue, muscle aches, and headaches than did those who did not use painkillers. Among participants who reported these symptoms, we observed no statistically significant differences in Ab levels irrespective of analgesic use. These data suggest that elevated Ab levels are associated with symptoms and inflammatory processes rather than painkiller use per se. Taken together, we find no evidence that analgesic use reduces Ab responses after COVID-19 vaccination. Recommendation of their use to alleviate symptoms might improve uptake of booster immunizations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)834-841
Number of pages8
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


Dive into the research topics of 'No Evidence That Analgesic Use after COVID-19 Vaccination Negatively Impacts Antibody Responses'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this