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Oncology | by CMRI
Many cancer patients ask if it is safe to receive one of the approved COVID-19 vaccines. After all, we know that having an underlying medical condition, such as cancer or heart disease, increases your chances of developing illness from the virus. Many cancer patients and caregivers are concerned about future vaccines designed to fight against COVID-19 infection.
As suggested by our expert oncologists in Kolkata, immunization against COVID-19 is advised for most adults with cancer or a history of cancer, but there are some factors that people with cancer should consider first.
If you have cancer, you are more likely to have severe COVID-19. Other risk factors for severe COVID-19 include having a reduced immune system (being immunocompromised), being older, and having other medical disorders like diabetes and high blood pressure.
People with blood malignancies may be more susceptible to COVID-19 infection and death than people with solid tumors. This is due to the fact that individuals with blood malignancies frequently have aberrant or decreased numbers of immune cells, which create antibodies against viruses.
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Yes. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone over the age of six months gets vaccinated. Most people with underlying medical issues, including cancer, fall into this category too.
As per various studies, COVID-19 vaccination is effective only in healthy adults, excluding cancer patients, those receiving chemotherapy, and people with weakened immune systems.
Vaccines also require a functioning immune system to develop immunity, and chemotherapy suppresses the immune system, making an appropriate response difficult to detect. As a result, it is unclear whether these vaccines are similarly effective in cancer patients or not.
In general, every cancer patient undergoing chemotherapy or immunotherapy is advised to avoid any vaccine or to consult with their medical oncologist before administering any vaccine. The same is true with the COVID-19 vaccination. You should consult your treating doctor before receiving any vaccinations, including the COVID-19 vaccine when it becomes available.
Both vaccinations available in India have only been studied in healthy adults and have been deemed safe by the DGCI based on the study data.
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As suggested by our expert medical oncologist in Kolkata, the following instructions should be followed in order to avoid exposure to infection, even if you’re vaccinated.
Consult our best oncology doctor in Kolkata if you or someone you know has a history of cancer and is still unsure whether to get the booster shots or not. They will address all your queries and will guide you accordingly.