False and misleading information about COVID-19 vaccines and heart inflammation is being spread widely, including by doctors.
That includes claims that data clearly show myocarditis, or heart inflammation, is more prevalent after COVID-19 infection when compared to COVID-19 vaccination.
"At this point it does not seem like an intellectually honest attempt to conduct a risk-benefit analysis," Allison Krug, an epidemiologist, told The Epoch Times. "I'm just dismayed that they don't seem genuinely interested in repairing the credibility with parents lost over the last two-and-a-half years."The CDC did not respond to a request for comment.
Dr. Rivkees, presented with studies that have found people in at least some populations are at a higher risk of myocarditis after vaccination when compared to after a positive test, doubled down on his claim.
"In articles that compare risks of myocarditis from COVID vs. following vaccination ... the risk of myocarditis is greater after COVID than after vaccination," Dr. Rivkees, professor of the practice of health services, policy, and practice at Brown University, told The Epoch Times via email.
The CDC researchers found a higher rate of cardiac complications after a positive COVID-19 test than after COVID-19 vaccination in 40 U.S. health care systems. They did not include all COVID-19 infections.
Other ClaimsOther recent reporting on COVID-19 vaccines also includes false or misleading claims about myocarditis.
Continues TrendSolid information on myocarditis and COVID-19 vaccines has been hard to come by during the pandemic, with even the CDC hiding data and making false statements about the condition.
In guidance on its website, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services says that COVID-19 poses more of a risk than COVID-19 vaccination.
Officials pointed to the same CDC paper cited by vaccine proponents.
"For post COVID-myocarditis, they only included young people with an official COVID diagnosis in the health system," Dr. Tracy Beth Hoeg, an epidemiologist in California, told The Epoch Times via email.
"So not only was this a non-representative sample because these were a subset of the sickest children who were seeking medical attention but happened to also have a COVID positive test," she added. "At the same time they underestimated the total number of children infected by only including those with a health system associated positive result (so this shrinks the denominator and increases the myocarditis rate per infection)," she said.
Those choices would inflate the rate of post-COVID myocarditis cases, she said.
The researchers did include in the paper calculations for post-vaccination myocarditis as high as 360 cases per million second doses in 12- to 17-year-old males, or as high as one in 2,800 second doses.
Cases After Bivalent ShotAccording to the Vaccine Safety Datalink data, through March 11, one case of myocarditis was detected after Pfizer vaccination and one case was detected after Moderna vaccination.
CDC officials did not present any data from the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). Starting in mid-2021, the CDC has analyzed reports to the system and verified some of them before regularly updating reported rates.
Asked for more current data, the official said the study "is the most recent publicly available data we have on the topic" and that more current data would be made available to the public "when appropriate."
An Epoch Times search of VAERS turned up 98 myocarditis, pericarditis, or myopericarditis reports following bivalent vaccination through Sept. 8. Ms. Krug counted 10 reported cases that were or appeared to be myocarditis or pericarditis among 12- to 29-year-olds.
Dr. Rivkees said the Vaccine Safety Datalink data "show that the risk of myocarditis following COVID boosters is very rare." He did not comment on the lack of VAERS data.
Dr. Walid Gellad disagreed.