The Poplar St. parking lot at the Juravinski Cancer Centre is closed from June 3 to September 27. Click here for more info.

Hamilton Health Sciences Home
Hamilton Health Sciences physician Dr. Dashminder Sehdev says that the rare blood clot associated with the AstraZeneca vaccine should not stop those who are eligible for the shot to take it.
April 20, 2021

The best shot is the one that’s in your arm

HHS trauma and emergency physician Dr. Dashminder Singh Sehdev posted this video to Instagram to illustrate how hospitals are becoming overwhelmed, and how people can help by getting any COVID-19 vaccine they are eligible for.

Hi everybody. I’m here in one of the mass vaccination sites in the Hammer.

There’s some big news this week: the AstraZeneca vaccine is now available to people over the age of 40. And you should get that shot.

There’s lot of controversy around AstraZeneca. Every vaccine has had its concerns as it’s been rolled out. There’s questions that that need answers, no doubt, but this is one we understand.

Extremely rare clot, treatable

There’s a specific kind of blood clot that can occur after receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine. That blood clot is definitely different and more dangerous than the blood clots you’ve probably heard of that you can get in your legs, for example.

Here’s the thing: that blood clot is extremely rare. It’s also extremely rare after getting the AstraZeneca vaccine.

How rare is it? Well, let me tell you this. If every single person in Ontario got the AstraZeneca vaccine who is eligible for it, we would have around 50 people get the clot.

Now, that number is three times lower than some of the weekly death counts we’ve had.  So in one week, in times of the epidemic, we’ve had over 150 people die. In a week! Think of the odds.

Let me tell you something else. That clot is something that guys like me and my esteemed colleagues are very good at finding. We know what a central venous sinus thrombosis is like. We can detect it and, even better, most of the time we can treat it.

Hospital system is overwhelmed

Still not convinced? Take a look at this. This is our mobile health unit in Hamilton. It’s a MASH unit. It’s a series of tents we’ve set up because hospitals are getting overwhelmed.

Please, if you’re a front-line worker over the age of 40,  particularly if you’re in a hot zone, please, please get your shot.

AstraZeneca, Pfizer, or Moderna – the best shot is the one that is in your arm.