Allergic reactions to Covid-19 vaccines are about 1.3 per 1 million people: Study

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on January 01, 2021 Published on January 01, 2021

Vaccines can be administered safely even to people with food or medication allergies, say experts

A team of experts led by allergists at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) has examined all relevant information related to Covid-19 vaccines produced by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna.

Their examination suggested that the vaccines can be administered safely even to people with food or medication allergies.

The group's findings were published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice.

This review comes days after The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) maintained that people with food and medicine allergies can take the Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/Astra-Zeneca vaccines, Metro News reported.

Also read: US doctor develops severe allergic reaction after receiving Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine: Report

After a closer review of the data related to allergic reactions, the FDA also recommended that the vaccines be withheld only from individuals with a history of severe allergic reactions to any component of the Covid-19 vaccine.

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advised that all patients be observed for 15 minutes post-vaccination by staff who can identify and manage such reactions. The US agencies do not recommend that people with food or medication allergies avoid vaccination.

Reassuring the public

In the new review study, Aleena Banerji, MD, clinical director of the Allergy and Clinical Immunology Unit at MGH and associate professor at Harvard Medical School, said: “As allergists, we want to encourage vaccination by reassuring the public that both FDA-approved Covid-19 vaccines are safe.”

She added: “Our guidelines are built upon the recommendations of US regulatory agencies and provide clear steps to the medical community on how to safely administer both doses of the vaccine in individuals with allergic histories.”

The experts noted that allergic reactions to vaccines are rare, with a rate of about 1.3 per 1 million people. They also determined that the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna Covid-19 vaccine allergic reactions will have a similarly low rate of occurrence.

They stressed that vaccine clinics will be monitoring all patients for 15 to 30 minutes and can manage any allergic reactions that occur. The researchers further recommended that individuals with a history of anaphylaxis to an injectable drug or vaccine containing polyethylene glycol or polysorbate speak with their allergists before being vaccinated.

They noted that patients with severe allergies to foods, oral drugs, latex, or venom can safely receive Covid-19 vaccines.

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Published on January 01, 2021
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