KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The recommendation from the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control came early Tuesday morning to take a break from administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine.
The recommendation comes after six rare blood clotting cases were reported in the U.S.
One woman died. Another is in critical condition.
“There are people who’ve gotten the vaccine who are probably very concerned,” Principal Deputy Director CDC Dr. Anne Schuchat said. “For people who got the vaccine more than a month ago, the risk to them is very low at this time.”
Right now, we know all six of the patients were women ages 18-48.
Although extremely rare, doctors want you to be alert. The CDC said symptoms occurred within six to 13 days after receiving the dose.
“These symptoms are different than the mild flu-like symptoms, fever and so forth, that many people experience a couple days after receiving the vaccine,” Schuchat said.
Some of the symptoms include:
– Headaches, severe enough to visit the hospital
– Abdominal pain
– Leg pain
– Shortness of breath
“So, I think a lot of that is going to be headache or pressure in your sinuses and around your head in that way,” said Dr. Dana Hawkinson with the University of Kansas Health System.
More than 6.8 million doses have been distributed in the U.S.
We’ve seen this particular shot used at mass vaccination sites, like at the Kansas City Zoo and at Arrowhead Stadium where 8,000 people got the shot. That event was in March. So, doctors expect you are in the clear.
“We can’t say never, but I would think that anything after two weeks you’re more than likely okay,” Hawkinson said. “But again, I think we still need more investigation.”
Hawkinson said treatment for this type of blood clot is different from a typical blood clot.
Doctors with the CDC also said the stroke-like illness is linked to low blood platelet counts.
“At this point at least, it’s not looking like those symptoms of normal blood clots, and I say normal, those that we think about in legs for all those reasons that we’re so familiar with,” said Dr. David Wild with the University of Kansas Health System.
If you experience severe symptoms within two weeks of getting the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, call your doctor. You can also report adverse effects online.