Follow the science: Stop the spread

COVID-19 Vaccine Q&A

Follow the Science
Follow the Science (Source: Southern Allergy and Asthma)

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Southern Allergy & Asthma has received many questions regarding the COVID vaccine. Below is a summary of the statement released by the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and immunology. For more information go to: https://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/library/asthma-library/covid19-vaccine

I have an immunodeficiency. Can I still receive the vaccine? The current vaccines do not contain live virus, so there is no risk of infection. If you have a primary or secondary immunodeficiency, or are taking medications to suppress the immune system, they simply may not work as well. I have allergies. Can I still receive the vaccine? There have been several cases in the media of patients having allergic reactions to the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Severe allergic reactions to any vaccine are possible, but are very rare. It is not yet clear what caused the allergic reaction in these cases. One additional ingredient to this vaccine is a compound known as polyethylene glycol. This material has many uses in the medical industry. Patients who are known to be allergic to polyethylene glycol should NOT receive the vaccine. Patient with allergies to food, latex, insect stings or inhalant allergens are not thought to be at increased risk of an allergy to this vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) already has several recommendations regarding the administration and management of allergic reactions to the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. These include:

  • Those with a history of severe allergic reaction (e.g., anaphylaxis) to an injectable medication or other vaccine should use caution when receiving the vaccine and be observed during a 30-minute observation period.
  • Those with a history of severe allergic reaction to any component of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (including polyethylene glycol) should not be vaccinated with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.
  • In all cases, the vaccine should be administered in a healthcare setting where severe allergies (e.g., anaphylaxis) can be treated. Epinephrine is the first-line treatment for anaphylaxis and should be readily available.

The practitioners at Southern Allergy & Asthma have all “followed the science” and received the COVID vaccine. We do not test for COVID or administer the vaccine; however, we are actively caring for patients with allergic disease and asthma via telemedicine and in office visits. Call today: 912-303-9355

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