Thrombosis Thrombocytopenia Syndrome: A Major Side-effect Caused By Covishield Vaccine

Aishwarya Pillai

, News

Thrombosis with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome: A Major Side-effect Caused By Covishield Vaccine


Thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), also known as vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT), is an extremely rare but serious condition that can occur after receiving certain COVID-19 vaccines. It involves the simultaneous development of blood clots (thrombosis) and low platelet counts (thrombocytopenia).


This syndrome has been primarily associated with the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine, occurring in approximately 4 out of every 1 million doses administered. In response to these safety concerns, the FDA has limited the use of this vaccine to individuals who cannot or refuse to receive the mRNA-based Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.


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Symptoms and Complications

Symptoms of TTS can appear within days to weeks after vaccination and may include shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, leg swelling, severe headaches, vision changes, easy bruising or bleeding, and tiny blood spots under the skin. These symptoms warrant immediate medical attention, as untreated TTS can be life-threatening.


Complications of TTS can arise from blood clots obstructing vital organs, leading to conditions like pulmonary embolism, heart attack, or stroke. Low platelet counts also increase the risk of excessive bleeding, particularly if it occurs internally.


Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis of TTS involves a physical exam, medical history review, and tests such as complete blood count, fibrinogen and D-dimer levels, and imaging to detect potential clots.


As TTS is a newly recognized condition, treatment approaches are still being developed. Current strategies often mirror those used for heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT), including intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) infusions and alternative anticoagulants.


Risk Factors and Prevention

While the overall risk of TTS is extremely low, certain factors may increase an individual’s susceptibility, such as age over 50, immobility, genetic disorders, autoimmune diseases, cancer, obesity, hormone replacement therapy, birth control pills, and pregnancy.


It is crucial for individuals with these risk factors to discuss their concerns with healthcare professionals and carefully weigh the potential risks and benefits of COVID-19 vaccination.



TTS is a rare but serious complication that can arise from certain COVID-19 vaccines. However, the risk of developing severe complications from COVID-19 itself is significantly higher than the risk of TTS. Ongoing research and vigilance are essential to ensure the safety of vaccine recipients while also protecting public health.


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