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Rare Blood Clots More Likely After COVID-19 Than Vaccine


New report puts post-vaccine risk in perspective.

The rare blood clot disorder reported by some Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine recipients is also a risk of COVID-19 infection, according to a new report by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association Stroke Council Leadership.

Chair of Neurology Karen L. Furie ’87 MD’90 RES’94 F’95, P’19MD’23, MPH, was lead author of the report, which synthesized existing data from more than 81 million patients and found that risk of developing cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) blood clots is eight to 10 times higher following a COVID-19 infection as compared to the risk associated with receipt of a COVID-19 vaccine.

While national news coverage has focused on reports of the CVST blood clot/stroke condition following vaccination, the report, published in the journal Stroke, puts the risk in perspective.

“COVID-19 infection is a significant risk factor for CVST,” Furie says. “The likelihood of developing CVST after a COVID-19 vaccine is extremely low. We urge all adults to receive any of the approved COVID-19 vaccines.”

Furie adds that the public should be reassured by investigations by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and US Food & Drug Administration into the connection, as well as by the data in the report.

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