Feds Raise Pause of J&J COVID Vaccine, Add New Warning

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This story was up to date at 8:35  p.m. 

April 23, 2021 — Use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine ought to resume in the US for all adults, the FDA and CDC mentioned Friday, though well being care suppliers ought to warn sufferers of the chance of creating the uncommon and critical blood clots that induced the businesses to pause the vaccine’s distribution earlier this month.

“What we’re seeing is the general price of occasions was 1.9 circumstances per million folks. In ladies 18 to 29 years there was an approximate 7 circumstances per million. The chance is even decrease in ladies over the age of fifty at .9 circumstances per million,” CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, MD, mentioned in a information briefing Friday night.. 

In the long run, the potential advantages of the vaccine far outweighed its dangers.

“When it comes to advantages, we discovered that for each 1 million doses of this vaccine, the J&J vaccine might stop over 650 hospitalizations and 12 deaths amongst ladies ages 18-49,” Walensky mentioned. The potential advantages to ladies over 50 had been even higher: It might stop 4700 hospitalizations and 650 deaths.

“In the long run, this vaccine was proven to be secure and efficient for the overwhelming majority of individuals,” Walensky mentioned at a press briefing on Friday night time.

The advice to proceed the vaccine’s rollout got here barely 2 hours after a CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted to suggest the pause be lifted. The vote was 10-4 with one abstention.

The choice additionally consists of directions for the warning directed at ladies beneath 50 who’ve an elevated threat of a uncommon however critical blood clot dysfunction referred to as thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS). 

As of April 21, 15 circumstances of TTS, all in ladies and 13 of them in ladies beneath 50, have been confirmed amongst 7.98 million doses of the J&J vaccine administered within the U.S. Three ladies have died.

The FDA and CDC beneficial the pause on April 13 after experiences that 6 ladies developed a blood clotting dysfunction 6 to 13 days after they obtained the J&J vaccine.


William Schaffner, MD, an infectious illness knowledgeable at Vanderbilt College in Nashville, and a non-voting ACIP member, mentioned in an interview the panel made the precise advice.

He applauded each the choice to restart the vaccine and the up to date warning info that “will clarify [TTS] extra totally to folks, significantly ladies, who’re coming to be vaccinated.”

As to ladies within the threat group needing to have a alternative of vaccines,  Schaffner mentioned that can be addressed in a different way throughout the nation.

“Each supplier is not going to have various vaccines of their location so there can be many various methods to do that. You could have to get this info and choose which website you’re going to relying on which vaccine is obtainable if this matter is necessary to you,” he famous.

ACIP made immediately’s resolution after a 6-hour emergency assembly to listen to proof on good thing about Johnson & Johnson’s protecting advantages in opposition to COVID-19 vs. threat of TTS.

Within the CDC-FDA press briefing, Walensky identified that over the previous few days, as regulators have reviewed the uncommon occasions, newly recognized sufferers had been handled appropriately, with out using heparin, which isn’t suggested for treating TTS. 

Because of this, regulators felt like their messages had gotten out to docs who now knew how you can take particular precautions when treating sufferers with the dysfunction.

She mentioned the Johnson & Johnson shot remained an necessary possibility as a result of it was handy to present and simpler to retailer than the opposite vaccines presently licensed within the U.S.

Peter Marks, MD, the director of FDA’s Heart for Biologics Analysis and Analysis, mentioned the company had already added info describing the chance of the uncommon clotting dysfunction to its reality sheets for sufferers and docs.

Janet Woodcock, performing commissioner of the FDA, mentioned vaccination facilities might resume giving the “one and executed” pictures as early as tomorrow morning.



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