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Business News/ Science / Health/  Covishield side effects: Thrombosis chances stand at ‘0.000003% in India’, says top government official
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Covishield side effects: Thrombosis chances stand at ‘0.000003% in India’, says top government official

A top government official involved in the nationwide vaccination program run by the government during the Covid-19 outbreak has said that the Covishield vaccine of AstraZeneca has demonstrated the lowest incidence of side effects in the country against the global average

Covishield side effects: The report said that approximately 180 crore doses of Covishield vaccine were administered across the country during the vaccination program (Photo: HT)Premium
Covishield side effects: The report said that approximately 180 crore doses of Covishield vaccine were administered across the country during the vaccination program (Photo: HT)

A top government official involved in the nationwide vaccination program run by the government during the Covid-19 outbreak has said that the Covishield vaccine of AstraZeneca has demonstrated the lowest incidence of side effects in the country compared to the global average, News18 reported on Thursday.

Earlier, AstraZeneca admitted that Covishield has the potential to cause a rare side effect called TTS (Thrombocytopenia Syndrome). The Anglo-Swedish drugmaker said that it has started the global withdrawal of its Covid-19 vaccine, Vaxzevria. TTS is a rare condition characterized by the sudden formation of small blood clots throughout the body, leading to a depletion of platelets.

The report indicated that approximately 180 crore doses of the Covishield vaccine were administered across the country during the vaccination program. However, only around 80,000 incidences of adverse effects were reported, with 98% of these events involving mild local reactions such as fever and swelling at the site of injection.

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“Roughly, the chances of TTS stood at 0.000003 per cent with Covishield in India, whereas globally, the risk stood at 0.0004 per cent," the government official told the news portal on condition of anonymity.

The official further said that the vaccine does not exhibit any long-term effects on the human body.

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If such a side effect were to occur, it would most likely manifest during the initial dose, he said.

“However, if it has not occurred by then, it is improbable to arise later, ensuring your safety," the official told News18, adding: “There is no reason to doubt the efficacy of the vaccine or anticipate any adverse events in the future."

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The official further said the incidence of side effects was low in India as the genetic makeup of South Asian people makes them less likely to develop thrombotic and thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS) compared to the genetic makeup of other populations in Europe and other continents.

When asked if the lower rate of side effects could be because of under-reporting, the official said, “In general, the advantages of vaccination far outweigh the minimal risk of harm. Nevertheless, as a precautionary measure, India has been consistently monitoring the emerging signs of harm."

Meanwhile, the Serum Institute of India, the maker of Covishield (copy of Vaxzevria), has said that the packaging of its product had “fully disclosed all uncommon to exceedingly rare side effects" including TTS.

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“We fully understand the ongoing concerns and it is crucial to emphasise our commitment to transparency and safety. From the outset, we have disclosed all rare to very rare side-effects, including Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome, in the packaging insert in 2021," the SII said in a statement.

The company further added that it stopped the manufacturing of additional doses of Covishield in December 2021 in India.

 

 

 

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Published: 09 May 2024, 05:18 PM IST
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