The first allergic reaction to Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine took place last week in Boston.
A Boston physician developed a severe allergic reaction shortly after being vaccinated on Thursday, according to The New York Times.
Dr. Hossein Sadrzadeh, who is a geriatric oncologist at Boston Medical Center, said that shortly after being vaccinated, he felt dizzy and felt that he had an elevated heart rate.
Dr. Sadrzadeh, who has a shellfish allergy, brought his EpiPen to his vaccination for fear of a reaction. He said that the symptoms of his reaction included a heart rate of 150 beats per minute, a cold sweat, dizziness and rapidly falling blood pressure.
“It was the same anaphylactic reaction that I experience with shellfish,” Dr. Sadrzadeh said.
In a Friday statement, David Kibbe, a spokesman for Boston Medical Center, said Dr. Sadrzadeh “felt he was developing an allergic reaction and was allowed to self-administer his personal EpiPen. He was taken to the Emergency Department, evaluated, treated, observed and discharged. He is doing well today.”
“I feel that if I did not have my EpiPen with me, I would be intubated right now, because it was that severe,” he said Friday, according to the Boston Globe.
Noting that more than a million people have already been vaccinated, Dr. Merin Kuruvilla, an allergist and immunologist at Emory University, said no one should push the panic button.
“This should not deter people who are not obviously at increased risk,” she said.
The Times reported that Dr. Sadrzadeh was treated with steroids and Benadryl.
The doctor said that he urges anyone with a history of allergic reactions to bring their EpiPens along when they are vaccinated and be vaccinated at a hospital — just in case.
“I really want people to take this seriously, those people who have severe allergic reactions. I want them to talk to their doctors, to their allergist. I want them to carry their EpiPen if they have it at home and also inform the person that is administering that injection to them that they have a severe allergic reaction,” he said, according to the Boston Globe.
“I knew the symptoms. I had the experience. I was a physician, and I was scared to death. Imagine someone who does not have the information,” he said.
Sadrzadeh said he has offered Moderna a blood sample to help isolate what ingredient in the vaccine might spark an allergic reaction.
“I really don’t want anybody to go and experience this and go through this event that I had,” he said.
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