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Can the COVID vaccine cause blood clots?

Vaccine-induced Thrombotic Thrombocytopenia (VITT) is an extremely uncommon, yet critical disease which received a lot of news and social media commentary in the framework of vaccines for COVID. The newly recognized disorder differs from other kinds of blood clot conditions because it's brought about with the immune system’s reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine, most often Ad26.COV2.S (Johnson & Johnson) and ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (AstraZeneca). Both these vaccines are utilising virus type vectors (the mRNA vaccinations provided by Pfizer and Moderna, do not employ this vector). Clinically it is quite comparable to the auto-immune heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT). Vaccine-induced Thrombotic Thrombocytopenia is considered to be as a result of autoantibodies that happen to be directed against platelet factor 4 which activates platelets to cause a thrombosis. The typical feature is most of these blood clots which can be in the brain or abdominal.

VITT generally seems to take place in 4-6 people for every million vaccine doses provided. The probability is less likely following the 2nd shot. The initial fatality rate has been as high as 50% with those who had the VITT, but the majority do today recover if it's recognized early, and appropriate therapy started. No noticeable risk factors have been identified, however it can appear to be more prevalent in individuals under the age of fifty. A previous history of blood clotting (for example a DVT) or some other non-immune blood disorders aren't risk factors.

Although the risk is extremely very low, it still did put a lots of individuals off receiving these vaccinations and opting for the mRNA vaccinations or simply used this as a reason for not getting a shot. This resulted in many public health government bodies to run multimedia campaigns to balance out the negative opinions, indicating just how low the danger was when compared to the chance of dying with a COVID-19 infection. These kinds of activities and also social media discourse pointed out things such as getting hit by lightning is much more likely to occur compared to getting a blood clot from a vaccine.

The usual signs and symptoms of VITT can be a continual as well as extreme headaches, stomach discomfort, lower back pain, nausea and vomiting, eyesight changes, alteration of mental condition, neurologic symptoms/signs, dyspnea, leg pain and swelling, and/or bleeding/petechiae within 4 to 42 days following the shot of the vaccine. People who have those symptoms will need to have their platelet count as well as D-dimer assessed in addition to imaging for thrombosis. The requirements for diagnosis is having had a COVID vaccine 42 days before, any venous or arterial clots, a problem known as thrombocytopenia and also a positive ELISA evaluation for a problem called heparin-induced thrombocytopenia.

Nearly all are in the hospital for treatment because of the severity of the signs and symptoms and also the potentially fatal risk from the problem. Initial treatment is with blood thinners (usually a non-heparin anticoagulant) as well as IV immune globulin to block the VITT antibody-induced platelet activation. Corticosteroids may be used in order to reduce the abnormal immune response. Refractory cases may require a plasma exchange and additional immune medications. Day by day platelet count checking and medical monitoring for almost any indications of thrombosis will be vital. Many cases continue to do well and will be discharged from hospital should they be no more susceptible to issues and the platelet count has stabilized.