Doctors: Rare ‘COVID arm’ skin reaction to vaccine is harmless
A rare rash that's been dubbed “COVID arm” seems to be impacting mostly women who received the Moderna vaccine, but is harmless, doctors told News 12.
It manifests as a red bull's-eye on the skin near the injection site.
Sarah Marji, of Yonkers, was thrilled to get her second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, but a day later, the hospital administrator says she noticed the rash forming.
"It does not hurt. It is not itchy. It’s just kind of raised when you feel it, it feels a little bumpy," she says.
Women from across the region sent News 12 photos of similar rashes that they say started days or a week after getting the vaccine.
Dr. Esther Freeman, the director of global health dermatology at Massachusetts General Hospital, has been investigating the reactions through a global COVID-19 dermatological registry.
"Your body is appropriately reacting to the vaccine and you should be able to get dose 2,” she says. “Our goal in understanding this is to not necessarily spread concern but to help people understand the skin reactions.”
She says most skin reactions they've seen are mild and disappear in a matter of days. Dr. Freeman says if it doesn’t disappear or begins to spread, contact a health care provider.
News 12 reached out to Moderna and didn't hear back. The company’s website does report swelling and redness among side effects.