A county in Washington on Tuesday confirmed that a woman died from blood-clotting complications after receiving Johnson & Johnson's single-dose COVID-19 vaccine. She is believed to be the fourth person to have died from such a complication.
King County stated that a female resident in her late 30s had died from the "very rare" complication. The unnamed resident received her J&J shot Aug. 26.
"Her cause of death was determined to be thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), a condition that has been identified as a rare but potentially serious adverse event in people who received the J&J vaccine," the county said in a statement.
When reached for comment The Hill, Johnson & Johnson said in a statement:
"The safety and well-being of every individual who receives a Johnson & Johnson product remains our top priority. Any adverse event report about individuals receiving Johnson & Johnson’s single-shot COVID-19 vaccine, as well as our own assessment of the report, is shared with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), European Medicines Agency, the World Health Organization (WHO) and other appropriate health authorities where our vaccine is authorized."
The company added that it is in support of raising awareness of the signs of the rare side effect in order to "ensure they can be quickly identified and effectively treated.
Earlier this year, administration of the J&J vaccine was briefly paused while U.S. health officials reviewed the rare blood clotting complication. Such complications relating to the J&J vaccine appear to be more common in women than in men.
Officials ultimately determined that the benefits offered by the J&J shot outweigh the risks and states resumed administering the vaccine in April.
King County noted that women aged 18-49 are at a higher risk for complications than women aged over 50. However, regardless of age, the county added that the benefits still outweighed the risks of not getting inoculated.
J&J scientists also said in April that there was “insufficient” evidence of there being a “causal relationship” between the company's COVID-19 vaccine and the reported complications.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 15 million doses of J&J's coronavirus vaccine have been administered in the U.S. so far.
A similar complication was seen with the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, with numerous countries in Europe opting to stop administering it . Other countries such as the U.K. decided to limit the AstraZeneca vaccine to people over 30 as younger people were believed to be more susceptible to complications.
AstraZeneca's vaccine has not been approved for use in the U.S.
Updated at 4:11 p.m.