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AstraZeneca admits its Covid vaccine could cause blood clots

AstraZeneca, the pharmaceutical giant that became a household name during the Covid-19 pandemic, has acknowledged rare side effects associated with its Covishield vaccine, including the formation of blood clots and a decrease in platelet count.

The company is currently facing a class-action lawsuit over claims that its vaccine, developed in collaboration with the University of Oxford, has resulted in fatalities and severe injuries in numerous cases.

AstraZeneca admits the side effects

In court documents, AstraZeneca admitted that its vaccine could, in very rare instances, lead to Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome (TTS), although the precise mechanism behind this remains unknown.

Covishield, developed jointly by AstraZeneca and Oxford University and manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, was widely administered in over 150 countries.

While studies conducted during the pandemic indicated that the vaccine was 60 to 80 percent effective in protecting against the novel coronavirus, one complainant alleged that the vaccine caused him a permanent brain injury after he developed a blood clot, which rendered him unable to work.

AstraZeneca has contested these claims, but its recent court submission marks the first time it has acknowledged the vaccine’s potential to cause side effects characterized by blood clot formation and a decrease in platelet count in humans.

The company further noted that TTS can occur even in the absence of its vaccine, emphasizing that determining causation in individual cases will require expert evidence.

This admission by AstraZeneca contradicts its previous stance in 2023, when it refused to accept that TTS was caused by the vaccine at a generic level.

Scientists first identified a link between the vaccine and a newly recognized condition called vaccine-induced immune thrombocytopenia and thrombosis (VITT) in March 2021.

Despite legal indemnification provided by the UK government to AstraZeneca, it has refrained from intervening in the matter.

According to the Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences, “very rare” side effects are those reported in less than 1 in 10,000 cases.

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