As of March 18, 2022, 18.5 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine have been administered. Of those 18+ million doses, there have been 60 confirmed cases of thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), approximately 300 reports of Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), and more than 2,000 preliminary reports of myocarditis or pericarditis.
While the chances of experiencing serious side effects from this vaccine are low, the FDA made the decision to limit the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine primarily because of the small – but still present – link to cases of TTS, a rare syndrome that could lead to blood clots. They have chosen to restrict the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to adults who otherwise would not receive a COVID vaccination (since the risks of harm from COVID are much, much greater).
On May 5, 2022, the FDA limited the authorized use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to:
- Adults (18 or older) who cannot receive the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines (either because of availability or health reasons)
- Adults (18 or older) who choose the Johnson & Johnson vaccine or not receiving any vaccine at all.
If you are considering receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, please consult with your doctor to see if it’s a good choice for you.
Please note, the number of doses and the number of health events change daily. For more up-to-date data, please visit the CDC’s Adverse Events after COVID-19 Vaccination report linked below. Their report is updated regularly.
https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/coronavirus/covid-19-vaccine/jj-vaccine-safety-pause.html (Johns Hopkins Medicine)