London: According to a study by an international research team, the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine may be associated with a low platelet count, in rare cases.
A low platelet count – blood cells that help prevent blood loss when vessels are damaged – can cause no symptoms and can lead to an increased risk of bleeding or, in some cases, clotting.
The research team, led by the University of Edinburgh, analyzed more than 1.7 million people who had their first sting Oxford-AstraZeneca sting and 800,000 who took the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in Scotland.
The small increased risk that affects the blood is known as idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP).
“The data indicated that there was a slight increase in ITP in the second week after vaccination for those who received the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, and possibly also an increased risk of blood clotting and bleeding,” the researchers said.
“The 11 cases of ITP per million vaccine doses are similar to the numbers seen for hepatitis B, MMR and influenza vaccines, ranging from 10 to 30 cases of ITP per million doses,” they added.
The team found no adverse events related to ITP, clotting or bleeding in their analysis for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.
The results, published in the journal Nature Medicine, also showed that people at greatest risk for ITP are older – a median age of 69 years – and have at least one underlying chronic health problem such as coronary heart disease, diabetes or chronic kidney disease.
‘This very small risk is important, but must be seen in the context of the very clear benefits of the vaccines and the possible higher risks of these outcomes in those who develop Covid-19, ”Said Professor Aziz Sheikh, director of the Usher Institute of the University of Edinburgh.
However, recipients of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine should be made aware of the small increased risks of ITP, the experts noted, while also emphasizing that the risk of developing these diseases due to Covid-19 is potentially much higher.
Source: Telangana Today