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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said women are reporting stronger side effects to COVID-19 vaccines.

According to a report from the CDC, nearly 80 percent of women reported having some type of side effect. The analysis is based on the first 13.8 million shots given in the U.S.

Dr. Darrin D’Agostino, Executive Dean of Kansas City University, says there are several reasons that happens.

“We’ve known for years that women tend to react stronger to vaccines. We see that in just about all of the vaccines that we give,” D’Agostino said. “So this is not so much a surprise.”

D’Agostino says there are four reasons why women have stronger side effects:

  1. Behavior
    • Women tend to be more likely to report side effects.
  2. Health conscious
    • They see doctors more often and they pay attention to their health a little bit more than men do.
  3. Biology
    • It also plays a role because estrogen drives the immune system.
  4. The dose may be a little high
    • Women tend to absorb medicine better than men do.

The CDC says the majority of the side effects being reported are minor and include:

  • Tiredness
  • Headache
  • Muscle pain
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Nausea

If you have a severe reaction of any kind, or if you experience a minor reaction for more than a couple days, contact your doctor. If the reaction is potentially life threatening go to the hospital.