Denmark health officials announced Thursday they are suspending the use of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine for 14 days as it investigates reports of patients developing blood clots after being inoculated.
On his Twitter account, Danish Health Minister Magnus Heunicke said authorities were looking into “signs of a possible serious side effect in the form of fatal blood clots,” though he made clear the stoppage was a “precautionary measure,” saying it was not possible yet to conclude whether the clots were linked to the vaccine.
The Danish Medicines Agency also confirmed the investigation on Thursday in a statement, saying it would work with the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and other European pharmaceutical authorities following the reports.
Austria suspended use of a batch of the vaccine earlier this week after a recipient was diagnosed with multiple blood clots and later died, and another was hospitalized with blockage in the arteries of their lungs – otherwise known as a pulmonary embolism.
The EMA investigated and issued a statement Wednesday saying it found no evidence so far linking the AstraZeneca vaccine to the two cases in Austria. The EMA said four other countries – Estonia, Lithuania, Luxembourg and Latvia – have stopped inoculations from the batch while an investigation continues.
The batch in question went to 17 EU countries.
In a statement regarding the Austria cases, AstraZeneca said earlier this week its vaccine is subject to strict and rigorous quality controls and that there have been “no confirmed serious adverse events associated with the vaccine.”