A spokesman for Pfizer said the company doesn’t yet have all the details of the report from Alaska but is “actively working with local health authorities to assess.”
“We will closely monitor all reports suggestive of serious allergic reactions following vaccination and update labelling language if needed,” said the spokeswoman Jerica Pitts.
“The prescribing information has a clear warning/precaution that appropriate medical treatment and supervision should always be readily available in case of a rare anaphylactic event following the administration of the vaccine.”
She said that prospective participants in the late-stage clinical trial were excluded if they had a history of severe allergic reactions associated with a vaccine or to any component of this vaccine.
The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention said that people with a history of such severe reactions “may still receive vaccination, but they should be counselled about the unknown risks of developing a severe allergic reaction and balance these risks against the benefits of vaccination.”
People who have mild allergies to food, pets, environment or latex can still get the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Some mild side effects to the vaccine – such as fever, fatigue, headache or pain at the injection site – are common and go away in a day or two, health officials say.
Experts say the new coronavirus vaccine has similar side effects to the widely distributed shingles vaccine.
Scientists do not know precisely what component of the new vaccine is implicated in the allergic response.