Even a possible third dose shouldn’t scare the 200,000 Italians suffering from severe asthma: the mRNA vaccine for COVID-19 is safe even for those who are on biological drug therapy and without there being substantial differences with the use of one monoclonal antibody or the other. This is demonstrated by the first Italian study conducted on these patients by experts from the Italian Society of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Clinic (SIAAIC). The results of the survey, published on Vaccines, discussed during the 33rd SIAAIC Congress, in Bari from 15 to 17 October, show that the vaccine has an optimal safety profile in all patients with severe asthma: more than 80% had no side effects after the administration of the vaccine and in 95% of cases it was a matter of minor disturbances. In no case has there been an aggravation of asthma: also for this reason, experts recommend patients to undergo the third dose with confidence and without fear.
The study was conducted on 253 patients with severe asthma followed by the Reference Centers for severe asthma in Verona and Padua and immunized against COVID-19 with Pfizer’s mRNA vaccine. “Only patients with a relapse of severe asthma in progress and being treated with a high dose of oral steroids were excluded from vaccination; all others were followed up to record and evaluate any adverse events after vaccination – explains Gianenrico Senna, co-author of the study and president of SIAAIC – The data are very reassuring: after the first dose only 19% of patients complained of a side effect which in 81% of cases was very common and of little consequence, after the second dose just 17% had an adverse event and in 95% of cases it was a matter of minor aches such as arm pain, fever, muscle aches or headache. After the first dose there were some uncommon but not serious complaints, such as widespread pain or lymphadenopathy, however, there were no rare adverse events, such as severe allergic reactions or facial asymmetries, nor was pre-medication recommended or reported. with antihistamines or paracetamol “.
The detailed analysis of patients treated with a monoclonal antibody was equally reassuring: the risk profile was comparable to that of those who do not take biological drugs. “The only precaution taken was to observe an interval of 48 hours between the administration of the biological drug and the vaccine dose – specify Andrea Vianello, professor of Respiratory System Diseases at the University of Padua and co-author of the study together with Gabriella Guarnieri, Respiratory Physiopathology Service, University Hospital of Padua – In no case was there a worsening of asthma, which remained stable or even slightly improved; the quality of life of patients has also increased, probably thanks to the positive attitude towards vaccination which was rightly seen as a precious help by subjects more susceptible to the damage of COVID-19. These data therefore encourage all patients with severe asthma to confidently and fearlessly undergo the eventual third dose of the vaccine, an essential and safe health tool for all of them.”.