Health Desk – 03 Mar, 2021: Coronavirus vaccinations can cause enlarged lymph nodes in the armpit or near the collarbone, which may be mistaken for a sign of cancer.
As As vaccines are rolled out across the country, doctors are seeing more and more of these swollen nodes in recently immunised people, and medical journals have begun publishing reports aimed at allaying fears and helping patients avoid needless testing for a harmless condition that will go away in a few weeks.
The swelling is a normal reaction by the immune system to the vaccine, and occurs on the same side as the arm where the shot was given. It can also occur after other vaccinations, including those for flu and the human papillomavirus (HPV). Patients may or may not notice it. But the enlarged lymph nodes show up as white blobs on mammograms and chest scans, resembling images that can indicate the spread of cancer from a tumour in the breast or elsewhere in the body.