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DHS does not believe blood clotting reaction to Johnson & Johnson vaccine has occurred in Wis.

Published: Apr. 13, 2021 at 5:19 PM CDT
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(WSAW) - The deputy Department of Health Services secretary, Julie Willems Van Dijk told reporters Tuesday that she is not aware that the rare, but serious reaction to the Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) COVID-19 vaccine has occurred in Wisconsin.

DHS told vaccinators in Wisconsin to pause administering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine for further review after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration advised the halt. The advisement is due to severe reactions six women had to the vaccine, specifically a rare and severe type of blood clot called cerebral venous sinus thrombosis. About 6.8 million people have received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

According to the CDC’s Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System data, which allows anyone to report adverse reactions to vaccines, there have been 95 reports made in Wisconsin into the system. Of those, 14% were administration mistakes, like administering the vaccine to people under the approved age to be vaccinated with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine or administering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after a person received another brand of a COVID-19 vaccine. None of those cases reported adverse reactions to those shots.

Most people had COVID- or flu-like symptoms of fever, chills, headache, body aches, fatigue, nausea, dizziness, and pain in the injected arm. About a quarter of individuals reported at least some symptoms at the vaccination site either immediately or within an hour after being vaccinated; most of those symptoms included dizziness, sometimes fainting. Roughly 44% indicated they began noticing symptoms hours after the shot with symptoms lasting one to two days, though a handful indicated symptoms lasted several days. Another about 30% did not indicate when they began to notice symptoms.

There were no explicit mentions of blood clotting issues. Willems Van Dijk mentioned for a three-week period after receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, people should look out for severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath, which are sometimes signs of blood clots. You are asked to contact your health care provider and use the v-safe program to report your symptoms if you notice any of these symptoms.

These symptoms were noted in some of the VAERS data in Wisconsin, though whether any of these symptoms led or would lead to a blood clot is not certain in these specific incidents. There were two individuals who were noted as likely to have had seizures.

There were no deaths reported in conjunction with receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

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