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COVID-19 vaccine side effect could look similar to infection, breast cancer in mammogram – KETV Omaha

The Society of Breast Imaging, or SBI, recently put out a recommendation that patients should schedule their mammograms around their COVID-19 vaccines. Nebraska Medicine is also following this guidance. In an SBI report, it was noted that a significant amount of patients who participated in both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine clinical trials noticed lymph node swelling in their armpit “The vaccine can create a lymph node response, which is good. That’s what we want. That means that your lymph node is pumping our antibodies to COVID-19,” Dr. Elizabeth Edney said. The report showed between 11% and 16% of patients who received the second dose of the Moderna shot had swollen or tender lymph nodes. Edney said the results were similar for Pfizer. “And likely what we’re able to observe on the mammogram is even higher than what people can feel,” Edney said. Edney said it’s a side effect that impacts mammogram screenings. “If we see those swollen lymph nodes and we don’t have the proper history of a recent vaccine we can have a problem thinking it’s something more nefarious,” Edney said. “Infection the patient is fighting can cause that, but also breast cancer and lymphoma can present with swollen lymph nodes.” Edney’s advice? She said patients should still continue cancer and coronavirus prevention measures. “Consider getting your mammogram before your vaccine, your first dose of your vaccine or consider getting it four to six weeks after your second dose of your vaccine,” Edney said. Edney said this side effect should not deter women from their exams. “This is just another thing where we kind of have to pivot and change the way we do things slightly, but hopefully everyone will get vaccinated and everyone will get their mammograms,” Edney said. Edney said the lymph node swelling should go down in one to two weeks. She also recommends when women go in for their yearly exams to tell their doctor when they got their COVID-19 vaccine.

The Society of Breast Imaging, or SBI, recently put out a recommendation that patients should schedule their mammograms around their COVID-19 vaccines. Nebraska Medicine is also following this guidance.

In an SBI report, it was noted that a significant amount of patients who participated in both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine clinical trials noticed lymph node swelling in their armpit

“The vaccine can create a lymph node response, which is good. That’s what we want. That means that your lymph node is pumping our antibodies to COVID-19,” Dr. Elizabeth Edney said.

The report showed between 11% and 16% of patients who received the second dose of the Moderna shot had swollen or tender lymph nodes. Edney said the results were similar for Pfizer.

“And likely what we’re able to observe on the mammogram is even higher than what people can feel,” Edney said.

Edney said it’s a side effect that impacts mammogram screenings.

“If we see those swollen lymph nodes and we don’t have the proper history of a recent vaccine we can have a problem thinking it’s something more nefarious,” Edney said. “Infection the patient is fighting can cause that, but also breast cancer and lymphoma can present with swollen lymph nodes.”

Edney’s advice? She said patients should still continue cancer and coronavirus prevention measures.

“Consider getting your mammogram before your vaccine, your first dose of your vaccine or consider getting it four to six weeks after your second dose of your vaccine,” Edney said.

Edney said this side effect should not deter women from their exams.

“This is just another thing where we kind of have to pivot and change the way we do things slightly, but hopefully everyone will get vaccinated and everyone will get their mammograms,” Edney said.

Edney said the lymph node swelling should go down in one to two weeks. She also recommends when women go in for their yearly exams to tell their doctor when they got their COVID-19 vaccine.

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