Local expert weighs in after Nevada woman who received J&J vaccine develops blood clot


LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced Wednesday that one of the six people across the U.S. who had severe reactions to the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine is a woman from Nevada. 

In an emergency meeting, the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices said the 18-year-old from our state developed a disorder called cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST), which caused severe clotting in her brain.

Officials said she was still receiving treatment as of Wednesday. 

Though the CDC and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommended the single-dose shot be paused Tuesday, many in Las Vegas have already received it. 

8 News Now spoke with a local medical expert, who urged others not to panic. 

“When they first started talking about it, it was like, ‘Hmm, what’s going on with this?’” said Las Vegan Mary Rendina.

Rendina received the Janssen vaccine on March 17, and though she didn’t see any serious issues, she was concerned to hear that six women developed blood clots afterward. 

“I kind of got a lot of people on the bandwagon to get the Johnson & Johnson vaccine,” she explained. “So, when that broke, I was kind of like, ‘Oh no!’”

Intermountain Healthcare Chief Clinical Officer Dr. Warren Volker said cases like this are rare, as so far, 7.2 million doses of the Janssen shot were reported to have been administered across the U.S. 

“It’s less than one in a million chance of this happening,” Volker told 8 News Now. “Every medication has some sort of risk associated with it. As this unfolds, I think we will learn more about it.”

He added that other vaccines on the market, Pfizer and Moderna, are still being administered safely. 

“I would definitely continue to recommend you get the vaccine that’s available to you,” Volker said.

As for Rendina, she told 8 News Now she’s still glad to be immunized and encourages others to weigh the risk and do what they feel is right. 

“I think it’s like anything else,” she concluded. “You just have to be hyper aware of your body.”

Volker told 8 News Now a severe reaction from the Johnson & Johnson vaccine would generally occur between six and 13 days after the shot was administered. 

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