Background. Vaccination has proven effective against infection with SARS-CoV-2, as well as death and hospitalisation following COVID-19 illness. However, little is known about the effect of vaccination on other acute and post-acute outcomes of COVID-19. Methods. Data were obtained from the TriNetX electronic health records network (over 81 million patients mostly in the USA). Using a retrospective cohort study and time-to-event analysis, we compared the incidences of COVID-19 outcomes between individuals who received a COVID-19 vaccine (approved for use in the USA) at least 2 weeks before SARS-CoV-2 infection and propensity score-matched individuals unvaccinated for COVID-19 but who had received an influenza vaccine. Outcomes were ICD-10 codes representing documented COVID-19 sequelae in the 6 months after a confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection (recorded between January 1 and August 31, 2021). Associations with the number of vaccine doses (1 vs. 2) and age (< 60 vs. ≥ 60 years-old) were assessed. Findings. Among 10,024 vaccinated individuals with SARS-CoV-2 infection, 9479 were matched to unvaccinated controls. Receiving at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose was associated with a significantly lower risk of respiratory failure, ICU admission, intubation/ventilation, hypoxaemia, oxygen requirement, hypercoagulopathy/venous thromboembolism, seizures, psychotic disorder, and hair loss (each as composite endpoints with death to account for competing risks; HR 0.70-0.83, Bonferroni-corrected p<.05), but not other outcomes, including long-COVID features, renal disease, mood, anxiety, and sleep disorders. Receiving 2 vaccine doses was associated with lower risks for most outcomes. Associations between prior vaccination and outcomes of SARS-CoV-2 infection were marked in those < 60 years-old, whereas no robust associations were observed in those ≥ 60 years-old. Interpretation. COVID-19 vaccination is associated with lower risk of several, but not all, COVID-19 sequelae in those with breakthrough SARS-CoV-2 infection. These benefits of vaccination were clear in younger people but not in the over-60s. The findings may inform service planning, contribute to forecasting public health impacts of vaccination programmes, and highlight the need to identify additional interventions for COVID-19 sequelae. Funding. National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Oxford Health Biomedical Research Centre.
Competing Interest Statement
The authors have declared no competing interest.
Work supported by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Oxford Health Biomedical Research Centre (grant BRC-1215-20005). MT is an NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow and NIHR Oxford Health BRC Senior Research Fellow. The views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the UK National Health Service, NIHR, or the UK Department of Health. The funding source had no role in study design; in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the paper for publication.
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Data de-identification is attested to through a formal determination by a qualified expert as defined in Section 164.514(b)(1) of the HIPAA Privacy Rule. This formal determination supersedes TriNetX’s waiver from the Western Institutional Review Board (IRB).
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Paper in collection COVID-19 SARS-CoV-2 preprints from medRxiv and bioRxiv