Cancer patients may wonder if their disease or ongoing treatments may change how well the COVID-19 vaccine works and their body’s response to the vaccine.
A study done in Israel helps to answer that question. The research included 102 patients with a mixture of cancer types and ongoing treatments. The results show that 90% of cancer patients undergoing active treatment develop antibodies after receiving two shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (compared to 100% of healthy study participants). The antibody levels were not as high as healthy individuals. It is not known whether the lower levels of antibodies affect how well the vaccine works or if the responses will last as long in cancer patients as they do in healthy individuals.