Why do COVID-19 breakthrough cases occur? – Community News

Why do COVID-19 breakthrough cases occur?

WELLINGTON, Florida — Amanda Carr, 31, and Sean Cooley, 29, said they were both fully vaccinated against COVID-19 last spring.

“I had the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, it was ready,” Carr said.

“I was able to get the Moderna vaccine,” Cooley said.


Both had COVID-19 breakthrough cases.

“Two months later, in early June, I ended up with COVID,” Carr said. “Unfortunately, I didn’t go well. I eventually became a bit more grateful for the fact that I was vaccinated.”

Amanda Carr, breakthrough COVID-19 case


Amanda Carr talks about her battle with COVID-19 after she was vaccinated.

“I had a breakout a few months ago and around 9pm that night I got really sick,” Cooley said.

dr. Larry Bush, an infectious disease specialist, explained what a breakthrough infection with COVID-19 is.

“COVID breakthrough basically means your immune system was primed by the vaccine to fight this virus, and when you were exposed to the virus, it broke through your immune system,” she said. “But that’s not uncommon with other vaccines.”

He said the vaccine is still doing its job.

“What’s important is that the main purpose of the vaccine was to prevent you from getting very sick, being hospitalized or dying,” Bush said. “It’s still very effective at the breakthroughs.”

dr.  Larry Bush, infectious disease specialist


dr. Larry Bush explains why some people contract COVID-19 despite getting the vaccine.

Cooley said he was given monoclonal antibodies the day after he tested positive.

“I went straight into action mode, and how do I get better?” he said. “Within 12 hours it was a 90 percent turnaround. I felt better very quickly.”

Carr said she was one of the first breakthrough cases her doctors had seen, and it took a little longer to recover.

“I had some pretty terrible symptoms,” she said. “I was down and out for about seven days. There were a few times where I thought I needed to go to the hospital.”

Both said they are still wondering why and how?

“I’m the only person I know who got a breakthrough case,” Cooley said.

Sean Cooley, Pioneering COVID-19 Case


Sean Cooley explains what it was like to get a breakthrough infection from COVID-19.

“I’m a bit dubious about the ‘one and done’ because I felt I couldn’t get enough of a response or any kind of protection,” Carr said. “I had a lot of friends who had bad symptoms, and I had none.”

Bush said it’s not that clear-cut when it comes to side effects of the vaccine.

“I’m the principal investigator of the J and J and AstraZeneca study, and in those studies we register each adverse reaction and grade as mild, moderate and severe,” he said. “But we also record everyone’s antibody levels, because they’re drawn every time you come. There’s no correlation with side effects and antibody levels. So even though you may have had a 103 fever and couldn’t get out of bed for two days, your antibodies are still there.” no more sculpted than someone who felt fine after the vaccine.”

Both Cooley and Carr have a message.

“I can’t imagine what it would have been like without the treatment or the vaccine,” Cooley said.

“If it hadn’t been for the vaccine, I don’t think I might even have survived COVID,” Carr said. “It was pretty tough. I was afraid of my breathing. I couldn’t concentrate or concentrate, and I live alone, so that’s a risk for me.”

Bush addressed questions people have about natural immunity versus vaccine protection.

“My answer is that absolutely natural infection is important, but the studies show that the vaccines seem to be better at preventing breakthroughs than people who already had a natural infection,” he said.

Bush explained who are at higher risk of breakthrough infections, and pointed out why they should be vaccinated in particular.

“That’s older, immunocompromised, maybe pregnant women,” he said. “If they get infected, their natural immune system doesn’t kick in as much, and that’s why they might not be doing as well.”

The bottom line is that Bush said the vaccines are effective at preventing serious infections.

“During this last wave that we had in the hospital, it was nine to one unvaccinated to vaccinated that ended up in the hospital and certainly an even greater number that got very sick were the unvaccinated,” he said.

Bush also said you should take precautions even if you are vaccinated.

“Don’t omit the other part of this process, which is a common sense limitation,” Bush said. “That doesn’t mean you have to wear a mask everywhere. That means when you’re in an environment where there are a lot of people, your chances are higher.”