- US researchers say teenagers are more likely to get vaccine-related myocarditis than end up in hospital with Covid.
- Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine caused most symptoms within days of the second dose.
According to US researchers, healthy boys are more likely to be taken to the hospital due to a rare side effect of the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid vaccination, which causes cardiac inflammation, than as a result of Covid itself, reports The Guardian.
Their medical data analysis suggests that boys aged 12 to 15, with no underlying medical conditions, are four to six times more likely to be diagnosed with vaccine-related myocarditis than ending up in hospital with Covid over four months.
The rare side effects
Most children who developed symptoms after receiving the second dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine did so within days of receiving the second shot; however, a similar side-effect has been reported with the Moderna vaccine. According to the authors, almost 86 percent of the boys who were impacted required hospitalization. According to Saul Faust, professor of pediatric immunology and infectious diseases at the University of Southampton, the findings appeared to explain the UK’s Joint Committee on Immunizations and Immunization’s cautious approach to teenage vaccines the research.
The overwhelming majority of myocarditis appears after the second dose of vaccine, so offering single shots could protect children while reducing their risk of the side effect even further.
“While myocarditis after vaccination is exceptionally rare, we may be able to change the first or second doses or combine vaccines differently to avoid the risk at all, once we understand the physiology better,” said Prof Faust.
“On balance, there is no urgency to immunize children from a medical perspective, although if schools are unable to maintain education for the vast majority at all times, the overall balance could shift. If my two teenage children are offered the vaccine by the NHS, my GP wife and I will have no hesitation in allowing them to receive the vaccine.”
The spokesperson said the latest study had been considered by the government’s independent advisory body, the Covid-19 vaccines benefit risk expert working group, which found that the interpretation of the findings was limited by the fact that the study did not take into account differences in treatment practices when comparing hospitalization rates between Covid-19 infections and myocarditis and pericarditis presenting post-vaccination, and there was no assessment of severity and duration of illness after admission.
“Safety monitoring strategies are in place for individuals under 18 years, including monitoring myocarditis and pericarditis occurring post-vaccination and the long term outcomes with these events. The MHRA continues to keep the safety of Covid-19 vaccines under close and continual review,” the spokesperson added.
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Source: The Guardian