By Molli Curtis
Plymouth Whitemarsh High School '22
After the realization of severe neurological side effects, The Food and Drug Administration advised a pause on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine rollout. While chief medical adviser Dr. Fauci stated that such symptoms would appear between six and 13 days following the shot, and the risk of having such symptoms is a one in a million chance, any risks must be handled before public distribution resumes. Given that this statistic is so low, Fauci shared his thoughts that J&J will be distributed to the public again soon. Luckily, word from the White House says that Monderna and Pfizer alone have produced enough vaccines to vaccinate the entire American population if J&J is ruled too unsafe to be distributed again.
In terms of the symptoms, more specifically, blood clots called cerebral venous sinus thrombosis’ and low blood platelet counts have been seen in eighteen to forty eight year old women who received the vaccine. In addition, the usual drug used to treat these blood clots is not able to be used in this scenario so alternate treatment methods need to be found. Even though these strange and intense symptoms are very rare, it is necessary for health care providers to take their time and guarantee that these reactions can be handled and properly treated. Thankfully, those who are two weeks out from their Johnson & Johnson vaccine seem to be in the clear since the time frame of severe symptoms occurring is behind them.
As of right now the public will have to stay posted regarding the future of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine distribution, but hopefully, it will resume in the near future. As the vaccine rollout continues, it is good to know Moderna and Pfizer are having no issues vaccinating the public and slowing the spread. While the future from this event is unknown, the future has brighter days ahead as the country gets closer and closer to herd immunity.