April 7, 2021
It is expected that those under the age of 30 in Britain will be offered anti-corona virus vaccines alternative to the AstraZeneca vaccine due to the evidence linking it to the development of rare blood clots.
This came in a recommendation after a review conducted by the United Kingdom’s pharmaceutical watchdog concluded that by the end of March 79 people had developed blood clots after receiving the vaccine, 19 of whom had died.
The agency said that this ACE is evidence that the vaccine caused the strokes, but indicated that the link is becoming more certain.
The review concluded that:
- There were 79 cases of stroke occurred, 19 of them died after giving 20 million doses of the vaccine, which means a chance of 4 in every million people having a blood clot, and a chance of 1 in every million people of dying
- About two-thirds of the rare cases of thrombosis are among women
- The ages of those who died ranged from 18 to 79 years, including three under the age of one year
- All reported cases occurred after receiving the first dose of the vaccine. However, nothing can be deduced from this, given the small number of people who received the second dose of the vaccine
Meanwhile, the European Medicines Control Authority said that these exceptional clots should be considered a very rare potential side effect of the AstraZeneca vaccine. But she said the benefits of this vaccine outweigh the harms. Several European countries have already restricted the use of this vaccine.
For its part, the World Health Organization said that the link between the vaccine and stroke is “credible” but not confirmed, adding that cases of infection are “very rare” among the nearly 200 million people who have received the vaccine in various parts of the world.
Matt Hancock, the British Minister of Health, said that this review proved that the vaccine is “safe and effective and its benefits far outweigh its risks for the vast majority of adults.”
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that the AstraZeneca vaccine “has already saved thousands of lives”, and that the new recommendations should assure people of all age groups that they have “complete confidence in vaccines.”
John Ryan, head of the UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Control Authority, said that the side effects of the AstraZeneca vaccine are “very rare,” noting that work is underway to ascertain whether the vaccine actually causes clots.
She added that “the balance between benefits and known risks is still in the interest of most people,” but noted that “the balance is more close” for younger age groups.
And she continued, “We put public safety in mind first of all.”
But she said there was a “reasonably plausible” link between the vaccine and the incidence of blood clots.
The review prompted the Government Vaccine Advisory Authority to recommend offering alternative vaccines to those between the ages of 18 and 29, as available.
Lim Weixin, an agency official, said the recommendation stemmed from “extreme caution, not due to any safety concerns.”
Mounir Bayrammad, head of the Human Medicines Committee, said that the risks of the AstraZeneca vaccine far outweigh the effects of contracting Covid-19 disease, which in turn causes blood clots.
Bayram Mohammed confirmed that 7.8 percent of people infected with the Coronavirus suffer from lung clots, while 11.2 percent of them suffer from deep vein thrombosis.
The Medicines Control Authority recommended that those who received the first dose of AstraZeneca get the second dose of the same vaccine. She added that an exception should be made for everyone who developed any of these rare clots after receiving the first dose.
Pregnant women and people who suffer from blood disorders that make them vulnerable to blood clots should consult a doctor before receiving doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
It is also recommended to consult a doctor for anyone who suffers from persistent headaches, blurred vision, or disturbances in vision for four days or more after receiving the vaccine, or who suffers from a rash, difficulty breathing or chest pain.