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A/H1N1 flu vaccine withdrawn in Canada due to high number of allergic reactions

2009-11-21 11:31 BJT

Special Report: World tackles A/H1N1 flu |

OTTAWA, Nov. 20 (Xinhua) -- About 170,000 doses of A/H1N1 flu vaccine are being withdrawn in Canada from Friday after health officials reported an unusually high number of allergic reactions.

Health officials in the western province of Manitoba reported Thursday a higher-than-usual number of allergic reactions after using vaccine from a batch manufactured by a factory of British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in Quebec.

Usually one or two allergic reactions are expected for a batch of that size, but Manitoba has recorded six severe allergic reactions.

GSK said Friday in a statement that the recall was a precaution and they would investigate to see whether there was something wrong with the batch.

Another province which has been using the vaccine did not report any rise in adverse reactions.

Of the 6.6 million people that had been vaccinated, there were 36 serious adverse reactions, Dr. David Butler-Jones, the country's chief public health officer, said earlier this week.

One person was believed to have died from a serious reaction to the vaccine, but the death had not been conclusively linked to the flu shot, he said.

Editor: Liu Anqi | Source: Xinhua