COVID-19 Vaccine Causes Allergic Reactions in Some With Allergies

After the emergency approval of the BioNTech-Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in the UK, hundreds of people got the shot and at least two people showed serious allergic reactions.

British medicines regulators have advised people with a history of serious allergic reactions not to receive the BioNTech-Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. 

“We’re looking at two case reports of allergic reactions,” Dr. June Raine, head of the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), told a parliamentary committee. “We know from the very extensive clinical trials that this wasn’t a feature.”

“As is common with new vaccines the MHRA [Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency] have advised on a precautionary basis that people with a significant history of allergic reactions do not receive this vaccination after two people with a history of significant allergic reactions responded adversely yesterday,” said Stephen Powis, the national medical director for NHS England, in a statement. “Both are recovering well.”

The MHRA issued new advice to health care professionals stating, “any person with a significant allergic reaction to a vaccine, medicine or food — such as previous history of anaphylactoid reaction, or those who have been advised to carry an adrenaline autoinjector — should not receive the Pfizer/BioNtech vaccine.”

We will update this story as new information is released.

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