LOS ANGELES - A spokesperson from the University of California San Francisco medical center reported a male patient is under care for blood clotting after he received the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.
The patient, in his 30's, is making a good recovery and expected to survive, according to hospital officials. He developed symptoms after taking the vaccine.
It's the first reported case of a man experiencing a rare blood clot following the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. The vaccine was put on a pause after 15 women experienced blood clotting, some passing away from complications. The patient was admitted April 21 with escalating pain in the lower back and leg, and received the recommended therapy for VITT, which includes intravenous immune globulin, the anticoagulant argatroban, and prednisone.
"To the best of our knowledge, this is the first male patient with VITT (vaccine-induced thrombotic thrombocytopenia) syndrome in the U.S. following the U.S. emergency authorization of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine on Feb. 27, 2021," UCSF spokeswoman Suzanne Leigh said in a statement.
Dr. Michael Hirt from the Center for Integrative Medicine spoke to FOX 11 following the latest Johnson & Johnson developments.
"This [case of a man with a rare blood clot] is a little disappointing because it does expand the number of people who have to be concerned about the vaccine and some of the complications," said Hirt.
Hirt spoke about how the vaccine works.
"The way that the COVID vaccine works is it induces a COVID-like experience. It doesn't cause COVID but you can feel for a couple of days as if you are actually catching COVID. Unfortunately, one of the things that tends to happen in patients who actually get the COVID virus is blood clots, sometimes very rare blood clots so when we are inducing a COVID-like experience with a vaccine, it's then not that surprising that we may be in very rare cases triggering some of those same complications like blood clotting," he said.
Hirt believes we could see more reports of complications following more vaccinations.
"I think as we vaccinate more and more people, we're going to see more potential complications and that's pretty typical. When you get outside the 30,000 people who were initially involved in let's say a clinical trial to launch these vaccines and now you're giving it to 30 million people, you're going to come across other people who have different genetics, different medical conditions, different tendencies. I think we're going to see more of these as we go on to vaccinate billions of people. We will see this and then we will have to check back in, adjust doses, and adjust our recommendations for who should and who should not be taking this vaccine," said Hirt.
Hirt said it's important to monitor possible symptoms.
"Once you're past the two-week mark after these vaccines, it appears to be pretty much clear and free. It's really about watching for symptoms, looking and talking with others about your symptoms including your health care professionals in order to find out if you are experiencing a side effect or just a sort of common reaction. As a physician, I've had lots of calls from patients who are concerned. We bring them in, we talk, sometimes we have blood tests to confirm. Sometimes we do CAT scans of their brains to ensure they haven't had one of these complications so doctors are now more aware that this is a problem and we're being proactive with patients who are concerned and have had the vaccine. I think that's the best kind of way to improve your chances of catching something early because we know how to treat it," said Hirt.
Sam Chmait took the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and has no concerns.
"That's what we got, we got the J and J vaccine, me and my wife as well. I think it's fantastic because for us at least, we got one shot and no side effects. There's a group of professionals that are handling all that and they know the pros and cons with all that's happening. You have to have some faith as well," said Chmait.
However, Joanna Gonzalez said she has concerns and is hesitant about getting vaccinated.
"They [doctors] need to check on that very carefully because it's [vaccines] being inserted in our bodies and we don't know what it has, especially on our kids. I'm still debating to have them get the shot," she said.
LA County and Riverside County will resume administering the Johnson & Johnson vaccine this week.