Differences Between COVID Vaccines

After nearly a year in the battle against the novel Coronavirus, Americans finally have access to two vaccines. Moderna, the biotechnology company, and Pfizer, a pharmaceutical company, finally gave the world the sigh of relief everyone was desperate for.

While it surely is welcome news, the thought of choosing between two vaccines against such a deadly disease can be more than confusing. After all, how can the world speculate what more has to transpire due to the outrageous pandemic?

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Pfizer shows remarkable efficacy at 95% in preventing the symptomatic spread of coronavirus. Thus far, the vaccine has proved almost equally protective for all age groups, ethnic and racial groups as well.

Pfizer requires two shots, including a priming dose and a booster shot, with an interval of twenty-one days in between. A single dose of the Pfizer vaccine contains thirty micrograms of the vaccine. As with any vaccine, the Pfizer vaccine can induce minor effects. As the FDA stated, these can include:

  • Redness, swelling, injection site pain
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Nausea
  • Fever
  • Joint pain
  • Chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Tiredness


The Moderna vaccine is effective at 94.1% in preventing the spread of the symptomatic coronavirus. The clinical trials showed that the vaccine displayed less efficacy in sixty-five years of age and older.

However, the FDA’s advisory committee explained that only a few members of this age group participated in the clinical trials. Hence, this fact is still uncertain. The vaccine has proved effective for all age, ethnic and racial groups.

With Pfizer, Moderna too requires two shots: the first is a priming dose, and the second is a booster shot. The interval between each shot by Moderna is twenty-eight days. Moderna opted for a much larger dose than Pfizer’s, using a hundred micrograms of the vaccine in a single dose. Although it is thrice larger in quantity than Pfizer’s, the results are not much different.


Both vaccines have proved to combat the harmful effects of dangerous COVID disease. Both these vaccines fall under the category of reactogenic. Although the side effects are mild are not dangerous, their possibilities of those occurring in persons.

The most common side effects include:

  • joint pain
  • muscle pain
  • headaches
  • fatigue
  • injection site pain

During the clinical trials, few participants ran a mild fever, and researchers noted that the side effects occurred more after the second dose. As an explanation, it is important to note that side effects are an indication that your immune system is kicking into fear. These do not mean that the vaccine is unsafe, and till now, there have been no serious or long-term side effects in recipients.