COVID-19 Vaccine Safety in Adolescents Aged 12–17 Years — United States, December 14, 2020–July 16, 2021

Authors: Anne M. Hause, PhD1; Julianne Gee, MPH1; James Baggs, PhD1; Winston E. Abara, MD1; Paige Marquez, MSPH1; Deborah Thompson, MD2; John R. Su, MD, PhD1; Charles Licata, PhD1; Hannah G. Rosenblum, MD1,3; Tanya R. Myers, PhD1; Tom T. Shimabukuro, MD1; David K. Shay, MD1 


What is already known about this topic?

In preauthorization trials of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, adolescents aged 12–17 years reported local and systemic mild and moderate reactions. Myocarditis has been observed after vaccination with mRNA vaccines in postauthorization monitoring.

What is added by this report?

Local and systemic reactions after vaccination with Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine were commonly reported by adolescents aged 12–17 years to U.S. vaccine safety monitoring systems, especially after dose 2. A small proportion of these reactions are consistent with myocarditis.

What are the implications for public health practice?

Mild local and systemic reactions are common among adolescents following Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, and serious adverse events are rare. The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices conducted a risk-benefit assessment and continues to recommend the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for all persons aged ≥12 years.

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