Covid Rare Blood Clots – A UK Study

Day 385: Stay Safe Minnesota

A new study from UK suggests that risk of a rare type of blood clot is low overall, but higher for people who have been infected with Covid-19 than among people who’ve had the three vaccines authorized in the UK.

CNN’s Lindsay Isaac writes in the April 15 Coronavirus Updates, citing a recently published study from UK, that ‘risk of a rare type of blood clot is low overall, but higher for people who have been infected with Covid-19 than among people who’ve had the three vaccines authorized in the UK – those made by AstraZeneca, Moderna and Pfizer’.

According to the study, “the risk of cerebral venous thrombosis or CVT – also known as cerebral venous sinus thrombosis or CVST – following Covid-19 infection is around ‘100 times greater than normal and several times higher than it is post vaccination or following influenza‘, across all age groups”.

Covid-19 markedly increases the risk of CVT, adding to the list of blood clotting problems this infection causes.

Paul Harrison, professor of psychiatry and head of the Translational Neurobiology Group at the University of Oxford (source: CNN)

Kevin McConway, emeritus professor of applied statistics at the Open University, in a comment to the Science Media Centre in the UK, said “Overall the main finding is that these CVT events are very rare – a few in every million people involved – in Covid-19 patients and in people who had one of the vaccines – but they were very much rarer in the people who had a vaccine than in people who had Covid-19. The researchers are not claiming that vaccines do not increase the risk at all compared to the risk in people who have not been vaccinated and have also not had Covid-19 – but they say the CVT risk in people who have had Covid-19 is about 100 times the risk in the general population.”

Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases told in Thusday’s House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis told that the UK’s study has some “procedural gaps”.

“They were trying to find out the difference in the incidence of thromboses, particularly cerebral venous thromboses, following the disease Covid-19 compared to various vaccinations, including influenza as well as the mRNA vaccines of Pfizer as well as Moderna. They found that – as you might expect – following the disease, you get a very marked increase in the incidence of this adverse situation of cerebral venous thrombosis.”

“There were many, many, I would say, procedural gaps in here regarding the way the study was done. It was a well-meaning attempt to show that Covid-19 disease is followed by this complication, but they led to some suggestions that I think are not called for in the paper.”

NIH Director on J & J’s Vaccine Pause

Dr. Francis Collins, Director of National Institutes of Health (NIH), told Wednesday that the recent pause on the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine will ‘allow researchers to investigate a potential link to severe blood clotting events, particularly whether certain populations are more susceptible’.

“Many people have heard about blood clots as something that you get in your legs, maybe if nothing is done, they have the risk of spreading to your lungs. This is a different kind of blood clotting scenario, where there is an activation of the platelets in the body, so that they begin to clot in various places. Most dangerously, this happens in the cerebral venous sinuses inside the skull,” said Dr Collins.

Some possibility here that it’s something about the vector that in a very rare individual sets off this cascade. We need to figure this out.

Dr. Francis Collins, Director of NIH,at a virtual event hosted by the American Association for Cancer Research (source: CNN)

Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNN on Wednesday, that the ‘recommended pause on the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine is just that: a pause — and not a cancellation — and will likely last days to weeks’.

House Hearing on Coronavirus Crisis

In a House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis hearing on Thursday, Dr Rachelle Walensky, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said “We take all reports of adverse events following Covid-19 vaccinations seriously. As announced earlier this week, CDC and FDA recommended a pause in administering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine while we review data and assess significance around adverse events reported in six people.”

“CDC and FDA are committed to remaining transparent through this process and will provide updates as they are available. CDC is working in coordination with national, state, tribal and local governmental and non-governmental partners to build trust in the vaccines, the vaccinator and the vaccination system.”

COVID-19 Vaccination Watch

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID vaccination tracker page (as of Apr 16, 9 a.m.) 258,502,815 doses have been distributed and 202,282,923 doses administered. According MDH COVID-19 Response vaccine data (as of April 14) a total of 3,532,035 doses of Covid-19 (Pfizer & Moderna) vaccines have been administered in Minnesota. According to the MDH latest tally (as of Apr 16) the confirmed COVID-19 cases in Minnesota are 552,117 (out of 8,764,206 tested) with 6,995 deaths.