The Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation approved the Sputnik M vaccine for use in the vaccination of adolescents against coronavirus infection between the ages of 12 and 17, inclusive . Vaccinations will become available by the end of 2021, Health Minister Mikhail Murashko said. In the near future, the vaccination centers will receive 150 thousand doses of the drug. The vaccination will be done exclusively with the voluntary consent of the parent or legal representative, or with the consent of the teenager himself, if he is over 15 years old. Sputnik M was registered with the Ministry of Health on November 24, 2021.
WHAT IS THE VACCINE “SPUTNIK M”
Sputnik M is a vector drug , an analogue of the vaccine used for the adult population – Sputnik V; it was also developed at the Gamaleya National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology. In the variant of the vaccine for adolescents, there are two components, the interval of administration is 21 days, the amount of the active substance is 5 times reduced compared to the variant for adults.
IS THE VACCINE SAFE FOR ADOLESCENTS
Nikolay Kryuchkov, an immunologist, candidate of medical sciences, general director of a contract research company, estimates the vaccination safety as potentially high, primarily because the amount of active ingredient in the vaccine is reduced. Yet, in order for experts to speak about the safety of a drug with confidence, published data on the phases of clinical trials are needed. However, overseas vaccination of adolescents with Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca drugs, even with not underestimated doses of active ingredients, is going well, and Pfizer and Moderna are used in this case for children from 5 to 11 years old. This is if you focus on the situation with childhood vaccinations in the world.
The head of the Gmaleya Center, Alexander Gintsburg, said that among the side effects identified during the clinical trials of Sputnik M there was only a slight increase in body temperature up to 37.4 degrees.
IS THE VACCINE EFFECTIVE FOR ADOLESCENTS
Preliminary data showed good vaccine efficacy. More than 90 percent of vaccinated adolescents develop immunity to the coronavirus.
- However, it should be borne in mind that the effectiveness and safety were not evaluated with respect to the strains of the new variant of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus Omicron, – says a pediatrician, infectious disease specialist, head of one of the Moscow medical centers Evgeny Timakov . – We cannot now analyze how effective the vaccine will be for this particular option.
WHOM TEENAGERS SHOULD GET IN FIRST
- Those who lead a socially active lifestyle, go to school, university, actively communicate with adults and children of their own age.
- Those who have not yet had a coronavirus infection or have had it for a long time, more than 6 – 9 months ago.
- For those who have risks of severe course of COVID-19:
- overweight children,
- with endocrine pathologies, including diabetes mellitus,
- with concomitant chronic diseases.
WHAT ARE THE CONTRAINDICATIONS FOR VACCINATION OF ADOLESCENTS
Contraindications to vaccination of adolescents against coronavirus infection are generally the same as for adults:
- severe allergic reaction to the first component of the vaccine,
- acute inflammatory disease (current, you need to wait for recovery and wait after 1 to 4 weeks),
- recent major surgical interventions,
- severe immunocompromised status of the patient (people with a severely suppressed immune system).
- Regarding children, you should be more careful with those who have allergies, especially if you have already had anaphylactic shock or Quincke’s edema and if the child has autoimmune diseases, – says pediatrician, infectious disease specialist Yevgeny Timakov.
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