Guillain-Barré Syndrome after J & J COVID-19 Vaccine
On July 13, 2021, the FDA announced an update to the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine EUA fact sheet to include a warning about Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS). Based on an analysis of Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting (VAERS) data, there have been 100 preliminary reports of GBS following vaccination with the J & J vaccine. These cases have largely been reported about two weeks after vaccination and mostly in males, many aged 50 years and older.
Clinicians should inquire about recent J & J COVID-19 vaccination in any patient presenting with signs or symptoms consistent with GBS (i.e. weakness or tingling sensations, especially in the legs or arms, that are worsening and spreading to other parts of the body; difficulty walking or with facial movements, including speaking, chewing or swallowing; double vision or inability to move the eyes; difficulty with bladder control or bowel function).