Do you have questions about the Johnson & Johnson COVID Vaccine?

On April 13, 2021, the CDC and the FDA recommended a pause in the use of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine.

by Nashville General Hospital
Covid vaccine stock

On April 13, 2021, the CDC and the FDA recommended a pause in the use of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine. Of the nearly 7 million doses administered so far in the United States, a small number of cases of a rare and severe type of blood clot have been reported in people after receiving the J&J/Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine. All reports occurred among women between the ages of 18 and 48, and symptoms occurred six to 13 days after vaccination. As of April 13, 2021, no cases have been reported among the more than 180 million people who received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.

What does a “pause” mean?

Although the J&J/Janssen vaccine is still authorized for use, CDC and FDA recommend this vaccine not be given to anyone until we know more. This gives scientists a chance to review the data and decide if recommendations on who should get the vaccine need to change. The CDC and the FDA will share more information as soon as possible with healthcare providers, people who got the vaccine, and the public.

Here is what we know now: scientists and doctors always look carefully at all reported side effects. From their review, they saw a small number of cases of a rare and severe type of blood clot in people who got the J&J/Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine. All reported cases were in women between the ages of 18 and 48, and the problems were found up to two weeks after vaccination.

What if I got this vaccine?

  • If you got this vaccine more than three weeks ago, your risk of developing a blood clot is very low. 
  • If you got this vaccine within the last three weeks, your risk of developing a blood clot is also very low. However, you should be on the lookout for possible symptoms of a blood clot:
    • severe headache,
    • backache,
    • new neurologic symptoms,
    • severe abdominal pain,
    • shortness of breath,
    • leg swelling,
    • tiny red spots on the skin (petechiae), or
    • new or easy bruising

Contact your healthcare provider and seek medical treatment urgently if you develop any of the above symptoms.

If you are scheduled to get the J&J/Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine, please work with your vaccine provider to reschedule your appointment to receive another authorized and recommended COVID-19 vaccine. There are two other COVID-19 vaccines authorized and recommended for use in the United States: Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna. If you experience any adverse events after vaccination, report them to v-safe, vsafe.cdc.gov

For more information visit: Recommendation to Pause Use of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine | CDC