A 15-year-old receives a COVID-19 vaccine at a mobile vaccination clinic at the Weingart East Los Angeles YMCA in Los Angeles, Calif., on May 14, 2021. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)
Heart Inflammation After COVID-19 Vaccination Seen Across US
Cases of heart inflammation in people who received a COVID-19 vaccine have been recorded in states across the country, U.S. health officials say.
Rhode Island, Utah, and Wyoming have each seen one case while Illinois and Arizona have seen two each, health officials told The Epoch Times in emails. Idaho has recorded three, and Texas officials are aware of 10 cases.
Connecticut previously reported 18 instances of post-vaccination myocarditis. There have also been cases in Oregon and Washington state.
The total number of cases is at least 57.
The number was reached from answers The Epoch Times received after contacting the health departments of every state and a review of publicly available information.
It includes Washington state, where officials told reporters in a briefing on Thursday that they’ve received more than a dozen reports of post-vaccination myocarditis from health providers.
There are indications that the number could be higher.
One hundred fifty-five case reports have been submitted to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), a database run by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration.
Critics note that system is a passive one, allowing anybody to submit a report. But health providers and others are encouraged by authorities, including the CDC, to submit case reports to the system. The actual number of case reports is likely higher than the reported figure of adverse events, because some patients do not submit reports or have reports submitted on their behalf, according to past statements about the VAERS system.
VAERS “is not designed to determine if a vaccine caused a health problem, but is especially useful for detecting unusual or unexpected patterns of adverse event reporting that might indicate a possible safety problem with a vaccine,” health officials say on the system’s website.
The CDC announced recently that it is investigating cases of heart inflammation, or myocarditis, that have cropped up in people who received a COVID-19 vaccine.
The agency’s Vaccine Safety Technical Work Group found rates of myocarditis in the window following vaccination do not differ from expected baseline rates, but group members were planning to investigate medical records of potential cases that are reported to VAERS.
The CDC did not list a number of cases. It described them as “relatively few” and “mild.” But at least 25 of the cases have required hospitalization, health officials told The Epoch Times.
No deaths have resulted from the cases. One death attributed to myocarditis was reported to VAERS in Texas. A spokesman for the Texas Department of State Health Services told The Epoch Times that the agency “can’t address individual VAERS reports.” Readers can find the full responses from each state at the bottom of the article.
Myocarditis can occur from COVID-19 itself. The condition in rare cases leads to a heart transplant. It is the third most serious safety problem identified following vaccination, after anaphylaxis (severe allergic reaction), and blood clots in conjunction with low blood platelet levels.
Officials are still recommending that people, including children, get a COVID-19 vaccine despite the adverse events because, they say, the benefits outweigh the risks.
“CDC and IDPH continue to recommend people 12 years and older get vaccinated,” a spokesperson with the Illinois Department of Public Health told The Epoch Times.
VAERS data was cited by officials in multiple states when asked about cases of myocarditis.
“This information will be reported to VAERS not the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. We do not have any information on cases of this,” a Michigan Department of Health and Human Services spokesperson told The Epoch Times in an email.
But officials in Washington state and Connecticut, which have reported the most cases, have cited information received directly from healthcare providers.
“We’ve had providers in Connecticut let us know about 18 cases in our state,” acting Health Commissioner Dr. Deirdre Gifford said during a press conference this week.
Some states have taken a hands-off approach, suggesting they’re not monitoring post-vaccination adverse events. Others are working to help explore whether the myocarditis cases are linked to the vaccines.
“We were very aggressive in talking to the provider community, the public health community to say, ‘hey, look, if you’ve got any of these cases, we want to hear about these,’” Dr. Scott Lindquist, Washington state’s epidemiologist for communicable diseases, told reporters in a briefing on Wednesday.
Officials in the state declined to provide an exact number of cases, but said that once the number reached more than a dozen, they called the CDC and asked them to help them review medical records.
Responses From States
The Epoch Times contacted the health departments in each state to inquire whether they have recorded any post-COVID-19-vaccination myocarditis cases. Below are the responses from each state that responded. Several were lightly edited to remove extraneous or outdated information.
From Dec. 10, 2020, through May 14, 2021, Arizona-specific VAERS reports have mentioned two instances of myocarditis, although a mention in VAERS doesn’t necessarily mean a case was connected to vaccination. Both were hospitalized. Nearly 3.3 million people in Arizona have received at least one dose of COVID-19.
We are not aware of any here in Arkansas.
Thanks for reaching out. We continue to work with providers on the reporting of side effects and adverse events that may be linked to the COVID vaccine through the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). We currently do not have any suspected cases of myocarditis linked to COVID-19 vaccines; however, we appreciate the notification from CDC to help guide providers in the evaluation of recently vaccinated patients with symptoms of myocarditis.
The science is clear that these vaccines are extremely safe and effective—and Delawareans who are fully vaccinated have significant protection from COVID-19 infection and serious illness. We would encourage all Delawareans to get vaccinated. More than 367,000 Delaware resident[s] are fully vaccinated.
At this time, there are no confirmed reports of myocarditis related to COVID vaccine in Georgia.
Someone forwarded an email from you (below) in which you ask if anyone in Hawaii has experienced myocarditis after being vaccinated. I am not aware of anyone in Hawaii developing myocarditis after receiving a COVID vaccine, but I will check with our Disease Outbreak Control Division to make sure this is accurate.
To date, myocarditis has been reported in 3 Idaho patients after they recently received COVID-19 vaccine. All were seen at the hospital. There have been no deaths.
Diagnoses of myocarditis are not routinely reported to public health. In searching CDC VAERS reports, IDPH was able to identify reports of at least two individuals in Illinois who had received a COVID-19 vaccine who were diagnosed with myocarditis and hospitalized. Those individuals have been discharged. CDC and IDPH continue to recommend people 12 years and older get vaccinated.
We are aware of this concern. We have not received any reports of vaccine-associated myocarditis at this time.
This is an adverse event that is directly reportable to the federal level (not the state) through the VAERS reporting system.
This information will be reported to VAERS not the Michigan Department of Health and Human services. We do not have any information on cases of this.
We have not received any reports at this time.
No reports of this in Missouri at this time.
DHHS is not aware of any cases of myocarditis in patients after receiving COVID-19 vaccine. However, it should be known that there is expected to be some background rate of myocarditis occurring as there are multiple potential causes to myocarditis, which include common cold viruses, Lyme disease, and COVID-19. Surveillance for rare conditions after vaccination are conducted by the CDC through national surveillance systems like VAERS which will then be evaluated to determine whether national reports of myocarditis is above expected background rates.
Oklahoma has not seen any cases of myocarditis among people who have received a COVID-19 vaccine, per the latest data available from May 14.
We are not tracking suspected cases of myocarditis cases possibly linked to COVID-19 vaccines. Within the past few days, the CDC shared that in recent weeks there have been reports of myocarditis occurring after COVID-19 vaccination. The CDC is aware of these reports and continues to monitor available data.
As part of COVID-19 vaccine safety efforts, CDC has been closely monitoring myocarditis/pericarditis in multiple safety systems, including the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) and the Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD). To date, there has not been a safety signal identified in either VAERS or VSD.
Healthcare providers should consider myocarditis in an evaluation of chest pain after vaccination and report all cases to VAERS.
While myocarditis can be serious, it is frequently mild and self-limited. Symptoms can include abnormal heart rhythms, shortness of breath, or chest pain.
Rhode Island has had one confirmed case of myocarditis in an individual who received a COVID-19 vaccine. The person was an adult, was hospitalized for one day, and has been discharged.
We have no reports of myocarditis cases among vaccinated residents.
We are not aware of any reports at this time.
We can’t address individual VAERS reports. A disclaimer on the VAERS website states that VAERS reports alone cannot be used to determine if a vaccine caused or contributed to an adverse event or illness. The reports may contain inaccurate, incomplete, or coincidental information as they can be submitted by members of the public as well as healthcare providers. Because of these and other limitations, it’s important to remember these reports do not equal causation.
But VAERS is an important tool for providing early warning about a possible safety problem or unusual pattern with a vaccine. When identified, these early warnings or “safety patterns” can then be studied more closely in other systems not limited like VAERS, like the CDC’s Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD) or the Clinical Immunization Safety Assessment project.
Currently, we’re aware of 10 cases of post-vaccination myocarditis in Texas.
There is one report in VAERS of myopericarditis from Utah, a 25 to 34-year-old male.
I really want to stress that myocarditis and pericarditis are quite common and can occur after infection with a number of viruses, including COVID. And that to date, there has not been a safety signal identified in either Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) or the Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD) associated with myocarditis/pericarditis (myocarditis is the inflammation of the heart muscle and pericarditis is the inflammation of the lining outside the heart).
Vermont has had no (zero) reports of such myocarditis cases.
Our statement of yesterday is all we have to share at this time. [Editor’s note: Officials later held a briefing referenced in the article]
According to our available information, there has been one such case with a juvenile who was hospitalized but recovered. There has been no proven link between the case and COVID-19 vaccination.
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