What are the symptoms of thrombosis after the Covid vaccine

Thrombus and low platelet levels after vaccination with viral vector Covid vaccines: the case of the 18-year-old Ligurian, who died after vaccination with Astrazeneca, brought attention to the risk represented by this adverse event which, although very rare, it can mainly affect younger people, especially women. In Italy, there are 45 reports of rare thrombosis on almost nine million doses of inoculated Astrazeneca, while according to European data, the reports concern on average 1 case for every 100 thousand doses administered. For the other viral vector vaccine (Jonhson & Jonhson), however, an estimate of the incidence is not yet available, due to the small amount of doses used so far.

What are the symptoms of thrombosis after the vaccine?

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has recognized that there is a possible link between the administration of viral vector vaccines and Vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT, vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia). The condition, characterized by thrombotic events associated with a reduced platelet count, is very similar clinically to heparin-induced thrombocytopenia, in which platelets clump excessively, causing obstruction of blood vessels and consequent blood clots that can be life threatening . Given the severity, it is therefore important to be aware of the symptoms which, if identified quickly, can minimize the risk of poor prognosis and poor outcomes. Symptoms can include:

  • swelling of an arm or leg
  • persistent abdominal pain
  • severe or persistent headache (headache)
  • blurred vision, confusion or convulsions, dizziness
  • shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • chest pain
  • bleeding, unusual skin bruising or petechiae outside the injection site
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When do symptoms occur?

Symptoms of rare thrombosis can occur five days to three weeks after the vaccine is given.

What to do?

If one of the symptoms attributable to VITT occurs, it is necessary to consult a doctor immediately. As mentioned, the condition is rare but particularly severe, and requires prompt treatment.

Are there any effective treatments?

The treatment protocols published by scientific societies following the reporting of the first cases of VITT provide for the intravenous administration of immunoglobulins and anticoagulants. In particular, the EMA – indicates a note from the Aifa – highlights the guidelines provided by the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (Isth) and reminds that the thrombotic syndrome associated with thrombocytopenia requires rapid identification and urgent clinical management “.

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