Barts-MS rose-tinted-odometer: ★★★★★
Despite the long blog post that I called CATCH-22 I am still getting numerous emails and questions from patients with MS about whether or not they should have a COVID-19 vaccine.
YES, you should have the vaccine when it is offered to you. Clearly, timely access to the vaccine will depend on where you live, how vulnerable you are and the local, regional and national guidelines in place in your own country.
The benefits of COVID-19 vaccination is time-sensitive and if you wait to be vaccine-ready you may inadvertently acquire the coronavirus infection and become really ill or when you are vaccine-ready the pandemic and the at-risk period may have passed.
In my opinion, some immunity is better than no immunity and the blunted vaccine immunity on some DMTs may be sufficient to prevent you from becoming infected with SARS-CoV-2, developing COVID-19 and more importantly developing severe COVID-19.
Are the vaccines safe? No vaccine is 100% safe, but the fact that the regulatory authorities have licensed these vaccines indicates that the benefits of the vaccine far outweigh the risks associated with the vaccine in the general population. At the moment the only relative contraindication to the Pfizer-BioNTech RNA vaccine is a history of severe atopy or allergies, i.e. people who carry around an epi-pen to prevent anaphylaxis in response to an environmental allergen.
Crowdfunding: Are you a supporter of Prof G’s ‘Bed-to-5km Challenge’ in support of MS research?