Americans who got Johnson & Johnson jab 3.5 times more at risk for blood clots

Researchers compared data from Americans before the pandemic to those who had taken the Johnson & Johnson jab (Picture: Reuters)

Americans who received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine are 3.5 times more likely to suffer blood clots that the general population pre-coronavirus, according to a new study.

Researchers with the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota who published the findings on Monday gathered data from 2001 to 2015 from Olmstead County, which has a population of about 158,000.

The researchers also used data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Vaccine Adverse Reporting System to identify blood clot diagnoses in people who got the Johnson & Johnson shot from February 2021 to May 7, according to the Daily Mail.

In the 14 years studied pre-pandemic, researchers found that 39 Olmstead residents developed cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST), which is a rare blood clotting condition in the brain that can possibly be deadly. Among them, 29 had a risk factor within 92 days of developing the clot. That equated to 2.46 CVST cases out of every 100,000 person-years.

Meanwhile, 8.7million Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses were given from February to May. Researchers identified 46 reports of CVST to the CDC’s reporting system, with 8 cases removed for not being professionally diagnosed or being duplicates. A total of 38 cases linked to the jab were found. Adjusted with the population, that meant there were 8.65 cases for every 100,000 person-years.

That meant the blood clot case rate was 3.5 times higher among people who received the Johnson & Johnson jab compared to the general population.

The study comes months after federal health officials temporarily paused usage of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine as CVST was a side effect for a small number of people who received it. The pause was lifted 10 days later, and a label was added advising women under age 50 of possible blood clotting.

About 15.6million Johnson & Johnson doses had been administered as of Monday morning, according to CDC data.

Despite their findings, researchers noted that the risk of blood clots is rare and that it is worth the benefits of contracting Covid-19 and possibly having health complications.

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