Investigating the Pain of Vaccines and Your Veins: What to Know Before Traveling

Be it the result of jetlag or the inability to relieve a leg cramp while mid-flight, most people can sympathize with the inherent discomforts of traveling for long periods of time.

And now, with the widespread distribution of COVID-19 vaccinations underway, there comes the increased likelihood that you may once again find yourself with a boarding pass in one hand and your suitcase handle in the other.

Of course, by combining your vaccine doses with an existing venous condition, you may have to take extra steps to ensure that your pain is managed or otherwise alleviated while on-the-go. Here’s what to consider:

What to Expect from Your Vaccination

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the most common side effects one may experience after they receive their COVID-19 vaccination are arm pain and swelling at the injection site, as well as chills, tiredness, headaches, and possibly fever.

Additionally, many patients have reported that they experienced an increased level of aches and tenderness following their second immunization dose in comparison to that of their first.

Bear in mind, however, that “experiencing side effects does not mean that you have COVID-19, but signals that your immune system is responding to the vaccine,” John Hopkins Medicine warns.

In other words, the side effects of the vaccine are altogether not a bad thing; rather, they’re an indication that your body is responding the way it is supposed to. In this case, it may simply add to the fatigue or discomfort you feel while traveling.

When Uncertainty is Your Travel Companion

Let’s face it: As much as we’d like to, we can’t always predict how our body is going to feel from one day to another, especially when several changes in timezone and altitude come into play.

And when you add COVID-19 vaccinations and venous pain into the mix? It may be that much more difficult to account for how your body is going to respond while you’re away from home.

That’s why there are at least a few simple remedies that may help mitigate mild pain, both at the injection site and in your lower extremities. Specifically, before and during travel, we recommend:

  • Staying hydrated
  • Wearing loose-fitted clothing
  • Sleeping during your flight or drive, if possible
  • Standing up to move around about every two hours while in transit

Relieving the Pressure of Pain

That all being said, if you’re experiencing pain while traveling — be it a result of your COVID-19 vaccination or your venous disease — over-the-counter pain relievers are always an option.

Not only does the CDC specify that it’s okay to consult your doctor about post-vaccination medication, but Harvard Health Publishing also specifies that “acetaminophen, aspirin, or ibuprofen may relieve occasional mild aching from varicose veins.”

However, you’ll primarily want to refrain from taking any of these medications directly before receiving your vaccination, as recent studies report that pain relievers may weaken the efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccination when taken beforehand.

Otherwise, the best step you can take while searching for long-term solutions is to reach out to your locally-trusted experts, like Duval Vascular Center!

While in our care, you can rest assured that we will work collaboratively with both you and your primary care provider to determine the treatment best suited to your body. Additionally, we operate out of a state-of-the-art outpatient center to ensure your comfort, no matter what step of the treatment process you’re in.

To learn more about how Duval Vascular Center can help you, or to schedule your FREE vein screening, contact us today by calling (904) 518-1398! Whatever your needs, your health is our priority.