Following a report in Australia of a rare blood clotting condition in a person who received COVID-19 AstraZeneca, ATAGI have released a statement for consumers and an updated statement for health providers.

Internationally, a small number of cases of thrombosis (blood clots) with associated thrombocytopenia (low platelet count) have been reported in the time period 4-20 days following vaccination. These cases have either presented as central venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) or thrombosis in other sites, such as intra-abdominal venous systems.

Vaccination against COVID-19 disease continues to be of high importance in groups who are most at risk of disease exposure or disease complications. Common or expected side effects of vaccination include headache, muscle aches, fever and chills, with onset typically beginning within the first 24 hours and symptoms lasting 1-2 days.

Health care providers and vaccine recipients are encouraged to be alert for any new, severe, persistent headache or other significant symptoms, such as severe abdominal pain, features of raised intracranial pressure (severe headache, vomiting, confusion) or neurological deficits with an onset between 4 to 20 days after vaccination. In suspected cases a referral to hospital is recommended and the appropriate investigations (full blood count, D-dimer, fibrinogen) and imaging completed.

Patients suspected to have this condition should not receive heparin or platelets.

As a precaution, anyone with a past history of CVST or heparin induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) is not recommended to receive the COVID-19 vaccine until further information is available. Investigations internationally and within Australia are ongoing.

To read the statement for consumers in full please refer to the link below:

ATAGI statement for consumers on a specific clotting condition being reported after COVID-19 vaccination

To read the the updated advice for health providers please refer to the link below:

Updated ATAGI statement for healthcare providers on a specific clotting condition being reported after COVID-19 vaccination