British woman dies in 'blood clotting incident' after AstraZeneca jab

British woman, 39, dies in Cyprus in ‘blood clotting incident’ days after receiving AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine

  • Woman, 39,died in Nicosia after receiving the first dose of the vaccine on May 6
  • She suffered symptoms days after having the jab and later died, authorities said 
  • Cyprus health officials are investigating four other cases of ‘mild’ blood clotting 

A 39-year-old British woman died in a Cypriot hospital after a blood clotting incident after receiving the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, the official Cyprus News Agency said on Monday.

Charalambos Charilaou, the spokesperson for the state health services, told CNA that the European Medicines Agency (EMA) would investigate the death.

The woman, treated at Nicosia General Hospital’s intensive care unit, received the first dose of the vaccine on May 6 in the resort town of Paphos on the western coast of the Mediterranean island.

The woman, who was not named, suffered symptoms days later and died over the weekend.

Cyprus health authorities have opened an investigation to see if the ‘serious thrombotic episode’ was linked to the AstraZeneca jab.

A 39-year-old British woman died in a Cypriot hospital after a blood clotting incident after receiving the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, the official Cyprus News Agency said on Monday

Cypriot authorities are investigating another four other cases of ‘mild’ blood clotting incidents – three of which occurred after an AstraZeneca shot and one after a Pfizer jab – are also being investigated by Cyprus.

Some countries have restricted or dropped AstraZeneca shots from national vaccine campaigns over very rare blood clots, though the EMA says the benefits outweigh the risks.

AstraZeneca is the backbone of the vaccination rollout in Cyprus, where family doctors also allowed to administer the jab to anybody aged over 20.

But many people booking online to get the vaccine have snubbed AstraZeneca and opted for other shots.

Health officials say anyone who has one or more of the below symptoms for longer than four days after vaccination should seek urgent medical advice.

  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Swollen leg
  • Persistent stomach pain
  • Severe headache
  • Blurred vision
  • Skin bruising beyond the site of injection  

The Oxford-developed jab has been marred in controversy since the European Union’s drug watchdog found a possible link between the vaccine and very rare blood clot cases in mid-April.

However it said the risk of dying from Covid-19 was ‘much greater’ than the risk of mortality from rare side effects, which affect around one in 100,000 people given the British-made jab. 

Regulators have so far spotted major blood clots in 242 people, of whom 49 died, with more than 28million doses now administered.

The clots have so far occurred in 141 women and 100 men aged from 18 to 93, and the overall case death rate is 20 per cent.

They appear to be more common in younger adults and slightly more common in women.  

On May 6 – the day the woman received the AstraZeneca jab – the British government announced under-40s would be offered an alternative jab.

Despite wavering confidence in the AstraZeneca vaccine, evidence is mounting that it is effective. 

On Thursday, a British study suggested that two doses of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine may be around 85 per cent to 90 per cent effective against symptomatic COVID-19. 

Earlier this month, MHRA chief Dr June Raine said the benefits of the vaccine clearly outweighed the risks for elderly adults but the ratio was ‘more finely balanced’ for younger people. 

She said: ‘Our position remains that the benefits of the Covid-19 vaccine AstraZeneca against Covid-19, with its associated risk of hospitalisation and death, continues to outweigh the risks for the vast majority of people.

‘The balance of benefits and risks is very favourable for older people but is more finely balanced for younger people and we advise that this evolving evidence should be taken into account when considering the use of the vaccine, as JVCI has done.’

According to Our World in Data figures, Cyprus is ranked third in the European Union for vaccinations per population, administering 57.54 doses per 100 people.

Nearly 49 per cent of Cyprus’ adult population has received a Covid-19 vaccine shot, and 21 percent are fully vaccinated.

Total infections since the pandemic in March 2020 started is 71,911 and 354 deaths.

Since the pandemic started in March 2020, Cyprus has reported 71,911 infections and 354 deaths (pictured, Covid testing in Nicosia, Cyprus)

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