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Thursday, September 16, 2021

Kerala hospital links pregnant woman’s death to vaccine

The incident was reported in Kottayam district, where the health department is awaiting the final autopsy report.

Written by Shaju Philip | Thiruvananthapuram |
Updated: August 23, 2021 6:59:37 am
The incident was reported in Kottayam district, where the health department is awaiting the final autopsy report.

The death of a 31-year-old woman in her first trimester of pregnancy has triggered a controversy after the hospital, where she was being treated, attributed one of the causes to vaccine-associated thrombosis.

The incident was reported in Kottayam district, where the health department is awaiting the final autopsy report.

Mahima Mathew, of Kottayam, had her first dose of Covishield on August 6. Before getting the shot, she had got her pregnancy confirmed from Mar Sleeva Medicity, Pala. On August 11, she developed a severe headache and was admitted on four days later to the same hospital. The day after, on August 16, she was declared brain dead and the death was confirmed on August 20. In the death report, the hospital stated cerebral venous thrombosis and vaccine-associated thrombocytopenia (pending autopsy) as the causes.

However, Kottayam district medical officer Dr Jacob Varghese said, “We do not understand under what circumstances the hospital has linked the death to Covid vaccine. A week after taking the vaccine shot, she developed a headache. We are awaiting the autopsy report. Besides, the death would be audited by an expert team of doctors. We can come to a conclusion only then,’’ he said.

In his complaint to the Health Minister Ranjith K, the woman’s husband sought a probe. “The health department has cleared Covid-19 vaccination for pregnant women. The hospital informed me that the health condition of my wife got complicated due to the side-effects of vaccination. I am not happy with the treatment at the hospital,’’ he said.

Earlier this month, when an 19-year-old woman died in a Kochi hospital due to intracerebral hemorrhage, her family alleged it was related to the vaccine. She had taken the first dose of Covishield on July 28 as part of undergoing a dental procedure. Later, she developed a headache and was admitted to a private medical college. She died on August 12 following hemorrhage.

Pathanamthitta District Medical Officer A L Sheeja said the state medical board’s report on the death was awaited.

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