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FDA investigating five allergic reactions after Pfizer shot in U.S

Stock MarketsDec 18, 2020 10:40PM ET
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© Reuters. Covid-19 vaccines are adminstered at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston

By Michael Erman

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is investigating around five allergic reactions that happened after people were administered Pfizer Inc (NYSE:PFE) and BioNTech SE (NASDAQ:BNTX)'s COVID-19 vaccine in the United States this week, a top FDA official said late on Friday.

Dr. Peter Marks, director of the FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said at a press conference that the allergic reactions had been reported in more than one state, including in Alaska.

Marks also said that a chemical called polyethylene glycol (PEG) that is an ingredient in the Pfizer vaccine - as well as the Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) Inc vaccine authorized on Friday - "could be the culprit" causing the reactions.

Marks said that allergic reactions to PEG could be somewhat more common than previously understood.

The cases in Alaska were similar to two cases reported last week in Britain.

Britain's medical regulator has said that anyone with a history of anaphylaxis, or severe allergic reactions to a medicine or food, should not be given the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

But the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has said that most Americans with allergies should be safe to receive the vaccine. It said only people who have previously had severe allergic reactions to vaccines or ingredients in this particular vaccine should avoid getting the shot.

On Friday, the FDA said the Moderna vaccine should not be given to individuals with a known history of a severe allergic reactions to any components of the shot.

The regulator is also requiring that appropriate medical treatments for immediate allergic reactions must be available when the shot is administered in case of an anaphylactic reaction.

Pfizer could not be immediately reached for comment.

FDA investigating five allergic reactions after Pfizer shot in U.S
 

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Comments (5)
Samantha Solomon
SamanthaS Dec 19, 2020 10:29AM ET
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I'm curious that they're focusing on polyethylene glycol. It's commonly used in many products and pharmaceuticals like ibuprofen which coincidentally I am allergic to but not Cetirizine for allergies with the same ingredient.
Tong Nguyen
Tong Nguyen Dec 19, 2020 7:18AM ET
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PEG is an antifreeze ingredient
Henrik Lindberg
Henrik Dec 19, 2020 3:11AM ET
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https://rumble.com/vbls73-finally-someone-steps-up-ands-tells-truth-about-coronavirus.html
Kenny Francis
Kenny Francis Dec 19, 2020 3:11AM ET
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What are you driving at Henrik Halim?
David David
David9 Dec 18, 2020 11:45PM ET
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no thanks....I'll wait until I can see 100% ok or not...
Kenny Francis
Kenny Francis Dec 18, 2020 11:45PM ET
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In all vaccinations, it is impossible to have 100% ok rate. Even for normal flu vaccinations, some people develop allergic reactions.
Sun Moon
Sun Moon Dec 18, 2020 10:21PM ET
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"investigating around five allergic reactions" Around? Is five too large a number for the FDA to count up to?    They're not quite sure if it's 3, or 4, or 5, or 6, or 7? Or is "500" also "around five" to the FDA.
 
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