COPENHAGEN -Scandinavian authorities on Wednesday suspended or discouraged the use of the Mother’s COVID-19 vaccine in young people due to an increased risk of heart inflammation, a very rare side effect in connection with the shot.
Sweden suspended the use of Moderna for recipients under the age of 30, Denmark said that those under the age of 18 would not be offered the Swiss-made vaccine, and Norway urged those under the age of 30 to receive the Pfizer vaccine instead.
The countries have sufficient supplies of both Pfizer and Modern vaccines and will be able to continue their vaccination campaigns.
In neighboring Finland, the authorities are expected to announce their decision on Thursday, says Dr. Hanna Nohynek, chief physician at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, to the local broadcaster YLE.
All three countries based their decision on an unpublished study with the Public Health Agency, saying it signals “an increased risk of side effects such as inflammation of the heart muscle or heart sac” – the double-walled sac that contains the heart and roots in They added: “The risk of being affected is very small . “
Anders Tegnell, Sweden’s chief epidemiologist, said that they “follow the situation closely and act quickly to ensure that vaccinations against COVID-19 are always as safe as possible and at the same time provide effective protection” against the disease.
The preliminary information from the Nordic study has been sent to the European Medicines Agency’s adverse reaction committee for assessment.
The study was conducted by the Danish Statens Serum Institut, an authority that maps the spread of the coronavirus in the country; The Medical Products Agency in Sweden; Norwegian Institute of Public Health; and the Institute for Health and Welfare in Finland. The final results were expected in about a month, says Bolette Soeborg from the Danish state health service.
The mother’s vaccine was given the green light for use in all 18 years and older in 27 EU countries in January.
In July, the European Medicines Agency recommended approving the Maternal COVID-19 vaccine for children aged 12 to 17, the first time the shot was cleared for anyone under 18 years of age. Canada also recently approved the use for those as young as 12 years old.
The Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine is approved for people 12 years and older in Europe and North America.
Hundreds of millions of Modern doses have already been administered to adults. In a study of more than 3,700 children aged 12 to 17, the vaccine triggered the same signs of immune protection, and no COVID-19 diagnoses occurred in the vaccinated group compared to four cases among those who received dummy shots.
Sore arms, headaches and fatigue were the most common side effects in young vaccine recipients, the same as for adults.
However, US and European regulators warned that both Modern and Pfizer vaccines appear to be linked to a rare reaction in teens and young adults – chest pain and heart inflammation.
Swedish health authorities said that the heart symptoms “usually disappear on their own”, but they must be assessed by a doctor. The conditions are most common among young men, in connection with, for example, viral infections such as COVID-19. In 2019, approximately 300 people under the age of 30 were treated in hospital with myocarditis.
Data indicate an increased incidence also in connection with vaccination against COVID-19, mainly in adolescents and young adults and mainly in boys and men.
The preliminary Nordic analysis indicates that the connection is particularly clear when it comes to Moderna’s vaccine, especially after the second dose, the agency said.
“The increase in risk is seen within four weeks after vaccination, mainly within the first two weeks,” it said.
The Swedish agency said that the vaccine from Pfizer is recommended for these age groups instead. The decision to discontinue the Moderna vaccine is valid until 1 December.
In Denmark, people under the age of 18 will not be offered the Moderna vaccine as a precaution, the Danish health authority said on Wednesday. It is said that data show that there is a suspicion of an increased risk of heart inflammation when vaccinated with Modern shots, although the number of cases of heart inflammation is still very low.
In Norway outside the EU, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health urged young people under the age of 30 to choose the Pfizer vaccine “due to an increased risk of a rare side effect” with Moderna.
In Denmark, children and young people aged 12-17 have primarily been invited to receive the COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer.
“Based on the precautionary principle, in the future we will only invite children and young people to receive this vaccine, not least given that it is for this vaccine that the largest amount of data from use is available for children and young people, especially from the United States and Israel,” in Soeborg.
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