Georgia on Saturday became the third state to shut down a vaccine site after eight people suffered adverse reactions to the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine.
"This is a really potent vaccine, and what we're seeing is some of that potency relating at a very rare side effect that we just have to be aware of," Dr. David Agus, a CBS News medical contributor, commented.
Vaccine sites in North Carolina, where 18 people reported side effects ranging from dizziness, nausea, and fainting, and Colorado, where 11 people also had adverse reactions, were temporarily shut down.
One woman, who was among the eight people having adverse reactions at the site that was shut down in Cumming, Georgia, told CBS46 in Atlanta that she fainted three times after having the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
“It’s scary because you know passing out once is not my concern it’s you know passing out multiple times and then having a 103.5 degree fever, two days after that,” said 25-year-old Sarah Moore after having her shot at a Department of Public Health site at the Cumming Fairgrounds.
“Within two to three minutes I knew I was going to pass out, my limbs started going numb, my face went numb,” she told the television station.
DPH Commissioner Dr. Kathleen Tommey said the department is examining what could have caused the reactions, including heat and keeping the vaccine site cool enough, but Moore said the heat had nothing to do with her fainting.
“It was not hot out, it was maybe, not even 70 degrees I don’t think, I was in a hoodie and jeans and feeling very comfortable," she commented.
Moore said after the first time she passed out, she woke up lying across three chairs and saw another person who was being carried out on a stretcher.
The Centers for Disease Control said it has performed tests on the vaccines and has not found any reason to be concerned and is not recommending health departments stop administering the shots.
Moore said she does not have any underlying health conditions, and that if she could do it again, she would either consider having the two-shot Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or waiting until more research is made available.
The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, along with Johnson & Johnson's, have reportedly produced more than 60,000 adverse reactions among the millions of doses of shots that have gone into Americans' arms in recent weeks.
Meanwhile, Johnson & Johnson is also facing distribution problems with the company planning to scale back shipments by 84% next week.
Pfizer is also seeking an expansion of its emergency use authorization that would allow it to give its vaccine to children as young as the age of 12.
Agus, though, warned Americans that they should not panic, even with the new variants that are driving the current growing surge of coronavirus cases.
"The current vaccines that are out there in the public work against all of the variants," he said. "Science is overcoming here. And that's why I think that by June we're going to overcome this virus in the United States and get to a new normal here."
Thousands of people were turned away from a California COVID vaccine site after being told to show up because there were extra doses available.
Meanwhile, in New York City, almost 80% of the new daily cases are from infections from the disease's variants and another 30% are from the B.1.1.7 variant first found in the U.K. That variant is thought to be up to 70% more contagious and more lethal.
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