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Covishield may cause blood clotting in brain

AstraZeneca, has for the first time admitted in court documents that its vaccine against Covid-19 has the potential to cause TTS, a rare side effect

Manoj Pathak

New Delhi :  Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca has publicly acknowledged that its Covid-19 vaccine, marketed globally under various names including Covishield and Vaxzevria, may lead to a rare side effect. This admission, made in court documents submitted to the UK High Court in February, marks a pivotal moment in the ongoing debate surrounding vaccine safety and accountability.

The rare side effect in question is Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome (TTS), a condition characterized by blood clotting combined with low platelet levels. AstraZeneca stated in the legal document that while TTS can occur, the causal mechanism behind it remains unknown. The company emphasized that expert testimony would be necessary to establish causation in individual cases.

Developed in collaboration with the University of Oxford, AstraZeneca’s vaccine has been administered worldwide, with a significant portion manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII) in Pune. Notably, Covishield has been a cornerstone of India’s vaccination efforts, with over 1.7 billion doses administered as part of the world’s largest vaccination program.

However, AstraZeneca’s admission has prompted legal action, including a class-action lawsuit alleging serious injuries and fatalities resulting from the vaccine. This development underscores the potential risks associated with vaccination and raises questions about corporate accountability and public health safeguards.

The acknowledgment by AstraZeneca also sheds light on the decision-making processes of regulatory authorities. In April 2021, the Australian Government acted on advice from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) regarding the association between the AstraZeneca vaccine and TTS. Subsequently, the vaccine was discontinued in Australia to prevent further cases of AstraZeneca-related TTS.

TTS is characterized by symptoms such as severe and persistent headaches, blurred vision, confusion, weakness, shortness of breath, chest pain, abdominal pain, leg swelling, and unexplained rash or bruising. These symptoms typically manifest between 4 and 42 days after the first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine, with younger individuals being at higher risk, according to health authorities.

As the global community continues its battle against the Covid-19 pandemic, the acknowledgment of rare side effects associated with vaccines underscores the importance of transparency, robust regulatory oversight, and ongoing research to ensure the safety and efficacy of vaccination programs worldwide. AstraZeneca’s admission serves as a stark reminder of the complex challenges inherent in navigating the intersection of public health, corporate responsibility, and legal accountability.

What’s TTS, Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome?

Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome (TTS) is a rare yet serious condition linked to certain COVID-19 vaccines, notably adenovirus vector vaccines like AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.

TTS is marked by the presence of blood clots (thrombosis) along with low levels of platelets (thrombocytopenia), crucial for blood clotting. It often involves unusual clot locations, such as in the brain (cerebral venous sinus thrombosis) or abdomen.

TTS Symptoms

Symptoms may include severe or persistent headaches, blurred vision, shortness of breath, chest pain, leg swelling, persistent abdominal pain, and easy bruising or tiny blood spots under the skin beyond the injection site.

TTS Danger signs you should’s ignore

While TTS is rare, individuals who have received vaccines associated with TTS should be vigilant for symptoms and seek medical attention promptly if they experience any within a few weeks of vaccination. Early recognition and treatment are essential for managing TTS effectively.

TTS, or thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome, involves blood clots in the brain or other parts of the body, along with a low platelet count. It’s a rare occurrence following specific types of vaccines and other causes,” Dr. Jayadevan, Co-Chairman of the National Indian Medical Association (IMA) Covid Task Force in Kerala, told media.–

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