CDC vaccine advisers to hear about new blood clot cases linked with J&J coronavirus vaccine

Vaccine advisers to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are scheduled to meet Friday to discuss how to move forward with the paused Johnson & J...

Posted: Apr 23, 2021 9:39 AM
Updated: Apr 23, 2021 4:02 PM

Vaccine advisers to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are scheduled to meet Friday to discuss how to move forward with the paused Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine.

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices is scheduled to meet from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Friday and is expected to vote on updated recommendations for use of the vaccine, made by Janssen, J&J's vaccine arm. Use of the vaccine has been paused since April 13, after a small number of people experienced blood clots after taking the shot.

The meeting is being livestreamed.

During the meeting, a subcommittee of the vaccine advisers known as the working group will recommend continued use of the vaccine in the United States, an expert familiar with the situation said Friday. ​

Typically, the CDC accepts the recommendations of ACIP, which is made up of outside experts.

'They are not going to disallow the use of the vaccine -- that is off the table,' said the expert, who required anonymity because the subcommittee's deliberations have not yet been made public.

'And they are determined that the committee will make a recommendation of some kind will today. They are not going to kick this can further down the road.'

Late in the afternoon on Thursday, the working group was still debating whether to ​recommend adding a ​warning to the vaccine ​and whether to suggest that people under a certain age not receive the shot. ​

The blood clot cases that led to the pause were all in people under the age of 48. Six women experienced blood clots within 6 to 13 days after being given the shot, according to the CDC and the US Food and Drug Administration. One man experienced clots 21 days after getting the vaccine during the clinical trial last fall, according to J&J.

More cases of rare blood clots

The advisers will discuss whether the vaccinecauses a rare blood clotting syndrome they're calling thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS). Other groups have called it vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia or VITT, but ACIP is sticking with more neutral language that doesn't presume vaccines are causing the condition.

It's characterized by a rare type of blood clot in the brain -- and possibly other large blood clots -- along with a low number of blood clotting cells called platelets. Some blood specialists have said they believe it's caused by an unusual immune reaction that targets platelets, causing them to glob together into clots.

ACIP will hear about additional cases reported since their last meeting earlier in the month. At the time, ACIP members said they needed more time and more information before deciding on whether and how to change recommendations for giving the vaccine.

The expert CNN spoke with said there have been more cases since then, but declined to say how many.

Oregon health officials said Thursday night they were investigating the case of a woman in her 50s who died after having received the vaccine and who had symptoms of TTS.

'We are very much encouraged by the fact that our safety reporting systems are working,' Dr. Shimi Sharief, senior health adviser with Oregon's health authority, told reporters in a briefing. She noted the coronavirus pandemic is ongoing and killing people.

'This is still extremely rare,' she said -- noting that seven cases of blood clots had been reported out of nearly seven million J&J vaccines given, and two of those cases had been fatal.

They'll hear from a blood clot expert -- Dr. Michael Streiff of Johns Hopkins University, who is likely to brief on what's known how to treat TTS. Reports indicate blood thinners, with the exception of a commonly used blood thinner called heparin -- will help dissolve the clots, and use of an immune product called IVIG can help neutralize the mistaken immune response.

ACIP will also hear from two officials of Johnson & Johnson.

Members of ACIP will consider the potential risks of the vaccine as opposed to the risk of catching coronavirus. Blood clot specialists have told CNN the risk of developing blood clots of all sorts from coronavirus infection are much higher than the risks seen in people who got the vaccine.

AstraZeneca's vaccine has been linked to TTS as well. The World Health Organization and European medical regulators have said the benefits of the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is not yet authorized in the US, outweigh any potential risks.

Earlier this week, Dr. William Schaffner, a non-voting ACIP member and infectious diseases professor at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, told CNN that it was likely that ACIP will recommend that use of the vaccine resume with a warning about possible adverse effects -- and potentially, advice to the highest-risk populations to steer clear of this vaccine altogether.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 501652

Reported Deaths: 10024
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34353540
DeSoto32162408
Hinds31977631
Jackson24508383
Rankin22015390
Lee15596235
Madison14597280
Jones13867243
Forrest13461252
Lauderdale11998317
Lowndes11065188
Lamar10522136
Pearl River9547237
Lafayette8557140
Hancock7740127
Washington7443160
Oktibbeha7147133
Monroe6787178
Warren6706176
Pontotoc6677104
Neshoba6642206
Panola6542131
Marshall6476135
Bolivar6323150
Union605794
Pike5824152
Alcorn5676102
Lincoln5439135
George497479
Scott473098
Tippah470381
Prentiss469182
Leflore4663144
Itawamba4640105
Adams4592119
Tate4592111
Copiah448792
Simpson4448116
Yazoo444887
Wayne440072
Covington429094
Sunflower4240105
Marion4232108
Coahoma4168107
Leake408688
Newton381779
Grenada3711108
Stone360664
Tishomingo360092
Attala331789
Jasper330165
Winston314691
Clay308977
Chickasaw301067
Clarke292594
Calhoun279447
Holmes267987
Smith264150
Yalobusha234547
Tallahatchie228251
Greene219449
Walthall218764
Lawrence213140
Perry205956
Amite205256
Webster203046
Noxubee186840
Montgomery179657
Jefferson Davis172243
Carroll169338
Tunica160039
Benton149239
Kemper141941
Choctaw133326
Claiborne132837
Humphreys129638
Franklin120328
Quitman106528
Wilkinson105139
Jefferson94734
Sharkey64220
Issaquena1937
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 820312

Reported Deaths: 15407
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1148731924
Mobile726221339
Madison52362697
Shelby37640350
Baldwin37266552
Tuscaloosa35120612
Montgomery34123740
Lee23540246
Calhoun22236488
Morgan20958378
Etowah19838500
Marshall18381304
Houston17394412
St. Clair16078339
Cullman15468293
Limestone15354199
Elmore15271286
Lauderdale14323295
Talladega13851283
DeKalb12664261
Walker11221370
Blount10207176
Autauga10048148
Jackson9877184
Coffee9211191
Dale8904185
Colbert8877201
Tallapoosa7093198
Escambia6778134
Covington6715183
Chilton6648162
Russell637559
Franklin5969105
Chambers5612142
Marion5010127
Dallas4979200
Pike4796106
Clarke475884
Geneva4575127
Winston4522103
Lawrence4327117
Bibb425386
Barbour357876
Marengo338390
Monroe331664
Randolph329864
Butler326796
Pickens316584
Henry312866
Hale311688
Cherokee302960
Fayette294180
Washington251651
Cleburne247760
Crenshaw245375
Clay243368
Macon234863
Lamar224847
Conecuh186353
Coosa180340
Lowndes175464
Wilcox168939
Bullock151744
Perry138940
Sumter133238
Greene126744
Choctaw88527
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