NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — With a coronavirus vaccine expected to be available soon, many are looking for more information.

CBS2’s Dr. Max Gomez answered some viewers’ questions.

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“Should people with allergies like shellfish and dairy stay away from the vaccine? What specific allergies should be wary?”

It’s not so much what you’re allergic to, but how severe your allergic reaction is. Seasonal allergies like hayfever may make you miserable but rarely will they proceed to an anaphylaxis-type reaction where you develop hives, blood pressure drops and airways narrow, blocking breathing.

The two people who developed those reactions after the Pfizer vaccine had a history of severe allergic reactions and carried EpiPens for emergencies.

The common anaphylaxis triggers include certain foods, including shellfish, peanuts and eggs. Additionally, it can be triggered by some medications, bug bites and latex.

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If you’ve had a severe allergic reaction or carry an EpiPen, you may still be able to get a COVID vaccine, but make sure you ask your health care provider for guidance.


“I am diabetic. Is it safe to take the vaccine?”

More than 3,500 people with diabetes were included in Pfizer’s phase three clinical trial of the vaccine.

The vaccine was found safe and effective in that group, and because diabetes is one of the underlying medical conditions that put you at risk for serious COVID-19 disease, you should strongly consider getting the shots when they’re available, but always check with your doctor first.

To submit your question for Dr. Max, visit the CBS New York Facebook page.

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