Heart specialists say a possible COVID vaccine side effect is too rare and too minor to keep you from getting the shot.
The Centers for Disease Control are reviewing whether more than 200 cases in young people of myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle, are the result of the vaccine. The condition can be caused by viral infections — including COVID-19 itself — but cardiologist and Community Health Network chief medical officer Ram Yeleti says there appear at first glance to be a more than usual number of cases.
But Yeleti says even if the C-D-C confirms the link, it’s an “infinitesimal” risk, with 226 cases under review out of 145-million fully vaccinated Americans, and more than twice that many who have gotten at least a first dose. He says you’d have a better chance of being struck by lightning more than once. More to the point, he says, the chances of serious illness from COVID-19 are hundreds of times greater, and the potential complications far more severe.
Yeleti says myocarditis itself, whether caused by the virus or the vaccine, isn’t terribly concerning. He says most cases go away on their own — that’s been true of all but about 40 of the patients with potential links to the vaccine. While Yeleti says a small number of cases weaken the heart over the long term, the condition is usually easily treated with steroids.
In Indiana alone, more than four-thousand people under 30 have been hospitalized by COVID-19. About 40 have died.