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US recommends “pause” for Johnson & Johnson’s COVID vaccine to review blood clot cases

The Centers for Disease Control said in a warning Tuesday that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine could be resumed immediately on Wednesday. The signal came after a chaotic day when the Food and Drug Administration recommended a “pause” for the vaccine, prompting almost every country to stop using the single-dose vaccine.

The CDC’s Immunization Practices Advisory Committee will meet on Wednesday for an emergency session, with voting scheduled for “updated recommendations for use” before the group adjourns at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Dr Anthony Fauci, President Biden’s chief medical adviser, told CBS Evening News host Nora O̵

7;Donnell on Tuesday night that the adverse effect appeared to have occurred within six to 13 days and “so if you had a month or two ago, I don’t think you really need to worry about anything. “

Fauci stressed that the chance of these side effects is “less than 1 in a million”, but he said he should watch out for symptoms such as severe headaches, some difficulty moving – for example in a neurological type of situation – or some discomfort in chest and difficulty breathing.

As of Monday, more than 6.8 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been given in the United States, a small portion of the total 190 million COVID vaccines given nationwide – most by Pfizer and Moderna.

The White House said Tuesday that the pause “will not have a significant impact” on the national vaccine plan. President Biden assured Americans that he had made sure the United States had enough doses of vaccines for all adult Americans from Pfizer and Moderna alone.

Several cases investigated by the FDA and CDC have occurred in women and involve a blood clot called cerebral venous sinus thrombosis, which is seen along with low levels of blood platelets, according to their statement. Symptoms were observed six to 13 days after vaccination in women aged 18 to 48 years.

“The treatment for this specific type of blood clot is different from the treatment that can usually be given. Usually an anticoagulant drug called heparin is used to treat blood clots. In this situation, the use of heparin can be dangerous and alternative treatments are needed. to be given to them, “they said.

The agencies said that “adverse events” seemed extremely rare, but that the break was important so that healthcare providers could be informed of the reactions and properly identify and manage the cases, given the unique treatment needed.

Ed O’Keefe contributed to this report.

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