October 27, 2021 at 2:51 pm
Hi Julie: Nothing in medicine is 100% safe but the safety of all the COVID vaccines is extremely high. There have been only a handful of cases of GBS following the Pfizer vaccine after nearly 6 billion doses given and I have been unable to find reports of any CIDP exacerbations. The risk with the J&J vaccine (not yet available in NZ) might be slightly higher but it is still extremely safe. Remember that almost all serious cases and deaths from COVID-19 have occurred in unvaccinated individuals and the risk of the disease is much higher than the risk of the vaccine. You should also know that you are much more likely to get GBS following COVID than you are to get it following vaccination. You can find an article in the GBS newsletter and on the website summarizing what we know about COVID vaccination in GBS as of September 2021. I will update that information every 3 months in case the situation changes. There is no reason to think that people like you have had GBS/CIDP should get the vaccine at any different interval; i.e, 3-6 weeks between the 1st and 2nd jabs. As with all medical interventions, including vaccination, you should discuss these issues with your GP.