What are the side effects of the hepatitis vaccine?

Stacy Wiegman, PharmD
Pharmacy Specialist

Hepatitis A vaccine
In rare cases, hepatitis A vaccine may cause a severe allergic reaction that leads to difficulty breathing, swelling in the face or throat, severe dizziness and hives. If you develop these symptoms after getting hepatitis A vaccine, get medical attention right away and don't get your second shot. Other serious side effects of hepatitis A vaccine may include:

  • unusual bruising or bleeding
  • paralysis of the arms or legs
  • confusion
  • irregular heartbeat 
  • seizures

Hepatitis A vaccine also may cause less severe side effects, including:

  • mild fever
  • tiredness
  • headaches
  • joint pain
  • nausea
  • redness or swelling at the injection site

Other side effects may be possible, so talk to your doctor if any new or unusual symptoms develop after getting a hepatitis A vaccine.

Hepatitis B vaccine
Side effects from the vaccine are very rare, and most often include pain, bruising or itching around the site of injection or feeling tired and weak. If you are allergic to any of the ingredients in the hepatitis B vaccine, you may suffer a severe allergic reaction. Contact your doctor right away if you experience any of the symptoms of an allergic reaction, such as a rash or hives appearing on your skin, trouble breathing or swelling around the face, mouth or throat. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.