Referring to one of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) many vaccine safety databases, health officials said Friday that people age 65 and older were more likely to experience an ischemic stroke 21 days after receiving Pfizer’s bivalent jab. BioNTech, compared to days 22-44.
An ischemic stroke, also known as brain ischemia, is caused by blockages in arteries that carry blood to the brain.
The safety risk requires more research and “is very unlikely to represent a true clinical risk,” authorities said.
Pfizer and BioNTech said in a statement they have been made aware of limited reports of ischemic strokes in people age 65 and older following vaccination with their updated jab.
“Neither Pfizer and BioNTech, nor the CDC or the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have observed similar findings in numerous other monitoring systems in the US and worldwide and there is no evidence to conclude that ischemic stroke is associated with use of the companies’ COVID-19 vaccines,” Pfizer added.
This safety concern has not been identified with Moderna’s bivalent jab, and both the CDC and FDA continue to recommend that everyone 6 months and older stay up-to-date with their COVID-19 vaccination.
Pfizer/BioNtech and Moderna’s bivalent injections, which target both the original coronavirus and Omicron subvariants, are approved for use in children 6 months and older.