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Covid vax 'safe' in people with high-risk allergies: Study

New York, April 20 (IANS) Severe allergic reactions to Covid-19 vaccines remain exceedingly rare, thus people with high-risk allergy histories can safely take the jabs, according to a study of 65,000 people.

Individuals with severe allergies to foods, oral drugs, latex, bee stings or venom can safely receive the Covid-19 vaccines, stated the experts led by allergists at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in the US.

“Our main goal is to enable as many individuals as possible to receive a Covid-19 vaccine safely and avoid unnecessary vaccine hesitancy due to a lack of knowledge around allergic reactions to vaccines,” said lead author Aleena Banerji, clinical director of the Allergy and Clinical Immunology Unit at MGH.

However, people with a recent severe allergic reaction to polyethylene glycol (PEG) — an ingredient in the vaccines — should see an allergist before getting the jabs, they recommended. The findings are published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice.

The study examined possible allergic reactions to Covid vaccinations in more than 65,000 people who have become fully vaccinated, with the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna Covid vaccines. PEG is the common excipient in both the mRNA Covid vaccines, whereas polysorbate 80 is the excipient in the Janssen Covid-19 vaccine.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention described the rate of anaphylaxis after receipt of the mRNA Covid-19 vaccines as 4.5 cases per million doses administered, with 89 per cent occurring within the 15- to 30-minute observation period. However, Polysorbate 80 caused anaphylaxis is extremely rare.

If a person is allergic to PEG, he or she should not receive an mRNA Covid-19 vaccine, instead speak to the physician about receiving the Janssen Covid-19 vaccine, the team suggested. On the other hand, if you are allergic to polysorbate 80, you should not receive the Janssen vaccine and instead speak to your physician about receiving the mRNA Covid-19 vaccines.

The CDC, has since April 13, placed the Janssen vaccine on “pause” while investigating adverse events of thrombocytopenia and central venous thrombosis.



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