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COVID-19: Seven deaths reported in Oxford/AstraZeneca UK recipients

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22 more cases of a rare blood clotting syndrome including seven deaths have been reported among recipients of the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab in the UK, although experts say the numbers remain low and the benefits of the vaccine far outweigh any risks.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), runs a “yellow card” scheme to pick up suspected side-effects or other concerns for medicines and medical devices.

According to the latest figures from the MHRA, there have been 22 reports of a blood clot in the brain called cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) that was accompanied by a low platelet count as well as eight reports of other blood clotting problems with low platelets, among recipients of the Oxford/AstraZeneca jab up to and including 24 March.

Platelets are fragments in the blood that help it to clot. Of these 30 reports, the MHRA told the Guardian seven individuals had died.

However, such cases remain rare: the MHRA notes that by 24 March, 18.1m doses of the Covid-19 Oxford vaccine had been given.

There have also been two cases of CVST among people who received the Pfizer/BioNTech jab, neither of them accompanied by a low platelet count.


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