On June 23, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) had an emergency meeting because of reports of myocarditis (heart inflammation) after COVID-19 shots. There were about 600 cases reported at that time; the number is now more than 1,200. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) concluded that this effect is “extremely rare” and “usually mild.” It will continue to monitor, but still recommends the jab for persons age 12 and over.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has added warnings about the possibility of myocarditis and pericarditis to vaccine Fact Sheets.
Hundreds of colleges are nonetheless still mandating a COVID jab to return to campus. The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) urges colleges, parents, students, and physicians to consider the following:
- Adverse effects have a spectrum of severity. There have been a few deaths from vaccine-associated myocarditis, and dozens of hospitalizations. We do not know how many cases have been unrecognized but may yet have long-term consequences such as heart failure.
- School physicals are often perfunctory and do not include CDC-recommended tests for myocarditis: electrocardiogram (ECG), troponin levels, or measures of inflammation such as C-reactive protein (CRP) or erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR). They also do not generally include echocardiography or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
- Treatment for myocarditis includes anti-inflammatory medications, renin-angiotensin inhibitors, beta-blockers, colchicine, abstinence from alcohol, and restriction of physical activity for three to six months.
- There have been no large studies that screened asymptomatic vaccine recipients for these effects, which were not part of the safety trials.
AAPS recommends that students be made aware of these facts. They should ask for an official college policy regarding COVID mandates, the person or persons responsible for it, and any provisions for screening, treatment, or compensation of students or employees mandated to receive these products who experience myocarditis or pericarditis. This is especially critical for those planning to engage in competitive athletics.
The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons has represented physicians in all specialties since 1943. Its motto is omnia pro aegroto, everything for the patient.