Genoa – An appeal by twenty-four vaccinators to highlight the “weak point of the AstraZeneca vaccine” was published on the Facebook profile of the Ligurian regional councilor Ferruccio Sansa, who undertook to submit a question.
“The vaccination campaign continues at full speed but, contrary to what was expected, the AstraZeneca vaccine that Europe had aimed at did not take off, and many doses are lying unused in the refrigerators”, write the signatory doctors. “AZ has a weak point, absent in RNA vaccines: it can cause venous thrombosis associated with decreased platelets, which occurs 5-15 days after vaccination and can be fatal. This complication has been described in people aged 20 to 55, but by far the most affected are young women. Vaccine thrombosis, which is not caused by RNA vaccines, is very rare. Obviously, however, in a mass vaccination there is also a complication very rare but potentially lethal it can cause a significant number of deaths, even in subjects who, by sex and age, like young women, have a practically no risk of dying from Covid ”.
“AstraZeneca vaccine has never been approved by the US drug agency (FDA) and has been removed from the vaccination program of various European countries, such as Austria, Norway and Denmark. Others have put restrictions on the use of AZ: in Italy it was recommended the preferential use in people over the age of 60, in France in the over 55. Also in England in March AstraZeneca was limited to the over 30s, and the the limitation has now been extended to those over 40. Furthermore, those who have already had AstraZeneca as their first dose, the second is given with an RNA vaccine. In Germany, citizens can choose their vaccine. Who has taken AZ as the first dose, can choose an RNA vaccine for the second “.
“Recently – continue the 24 doctors – the Italian government has decided to allow the regions to organize vaccination open days with AstraZeneca open to all. Numerous regions have already joined. Even in Liguria, from 24 May, citizens over 18 were able to book for Astrazeneca or Johnson & Johnson. Seats quickly sold out sparking rave reviews in the press and promises that the experience will be repeated. In reality, this initiative is hardly acceptable if, as always must be done in the case of drugs and vaccines, the risks are compared with the benefits. In subjects under 40 who do not have comorbidities, the risk of venous thrombosis with thrombocytopenia is sufficient to strongly advise against vaccination of AstraZeneca. In fact, in this age group the lethality for Covid-19 in Italy is close to zero, and hospitalization is very rare. Therefore, the possibility of having platelet thrombosis following vaccination with AstraZeneca, although very rare, represents a higher risk in healthy young people than Covid-19. On the other hand, in subjects over 40, the risk of serious illness, hospitalization and death from covid-19 clearly outweighs the risk of platelet thrombosis “.
“As volunteer vaccinating doctors we are against the AstraZeneca Open days, because the administration of this vaccine to subjects under the age of 40, in particular females, could involve more risks than benefits, even if rarely causing potentially fatal complications “. “The fight against the virus cannot be separated from transparency: regulatory bodies and doctors must provide complete, understandable and truthful information if we want to overcome the pandemic in a short time, strengthen trust in the institutions and avoid unnecessary risks among our young people”.
These are the names of the signatory doctors: Anna Rubartelli, Nicola Acquarone, Gabriela Arrigoni, Marcello Bagnasco, Daniela Bertagna, Gabriella Bruzzone, Chicco Bonalumi, Leo Chessa, Maria Antonietta Damerio; Enrico Haupt, Antonio Manti, Paola Minale; Federico Oggiano; Orietta Ortino, Renzo Poggio, Mariateresa Re, Vittoria Repetto, Guido Rodriguez, Adele Rossi, Angela Parodi, Daniela Salmeri, Carlo Venzano, Anna Vignoli, Susanna Voltolini.
Cambiamo regional councilors: “The decision to administer AstraZeneca to under 60s was made by Aifa”
“We are amazed and at the same time embittered to read what was reported today by Councilor Ferruccio Sansa, who copied and pasted a letter, not even recent, from some volunteer vaccinating doctors on the administration with AstraZeneca to the under 60”. So the group Let’s change! in the Regional Council replies to Sansa’s post on social media in which he announces the presentation of a question to the Council.
“We are embittered because with that gesture he is once again disqualifying the work of the Ligurian healthcare that is grappling with a gigantic effort and is obtaining some of the best results in Italy – the orange councilors reiterate – And we are amazed because the explanation to Sansa is soon date: the decision to administer AstraZeneca to under-60s was taken by AIFA, the Italian Medicines Agency, and the Liguria Region has adapted by offering this possibility only and exclusively on a voluntary basis. Furthermore, during the booking phase, the characteristics of the vaccine chosen are disclosed several times and no open day has been organized with files outside the clinics as has happened elsewhere, but a certain quantity of doses has been made available in a parallel line. We also want to remember that in several other countries, including England, AstraZeneca has been administered to a large part of the population with comforting results. We really do not understand, therefore, the reason for this action by the councilor which risks confusing the ideas of the citizens ”.