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EU regulator reviews reports of rare nerve disorder after AstraZeneca shot

EU regulator reviews reports of rare nerve disorder after AstraZeneca shot

Vials of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine are seen in a general practice of a doctor in Vienna, Austria on Apr 30, 2021. (File photo: REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger)

AMSTERDAM: Europe's medicines regulator said on Friday (May 7) it was reviewing reports of a rare nerve-degenerating disorder in people who have received AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine, and requested more detailed data on the cases from the company.

As part of a regular review of safety reports for the vaccine, Vaxzevria, the European Medicines Agency's safety committee is analysing data provided on cases of Guillain-Barre syndrome, the regulator said.

The EMA is also looking into reports of heart inflammation with Pfizer-BioNTech's vaccine, called Comirnaty, and Moderna's shot, it said. Both the vaccines use new mRNA technology to build immunity against the coronavirus.

READ: Fear of severe side effects upsets Sicily's COVID-19 vaccination plans

READ: Canada PM says AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is safe, despite blood clot death

The EMA and other regulators are already reviewing the possibility of rare blood clotting conditions with COVID-19 vaccines, including AstraZeneca's.

Guillain-Barré Syndrome is a rare neurological condition in which the body's immune system attacks the protective coating on nerve fibres. Most cases follow a bacterial or viral infection, and develop over the course of days or weeks.

It is an extremely rare, known risk associated with respiratory and gut infections, as well as some vaccinations in the past.

AstraZeneca, Pfizer, BioNTech and Moderna did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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Source: Reuters/ic

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