U.K.: Heart inflammation has been deemed “very rare” post effect of the Pfizer and Moderna jabs of Covid, according to UK’s health regulators.
The European Medicines Agency (EMA) said the side effects were more common in younger men, BBC reported.
Dr June Raine, CEO of The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said: “The benefits of these vaccines in protecting against hospitalisation and death from Covid-19 greatly outweigh any potential risks, and people are encouraged to continue to come forward for their first and second vaccination when invited to do so.”
EMA also said the benefits of all authorised coronavirus vaccines “continue to outweigh their risks.”
However, doctors and patients have been advised to be aware of the symptoms of heart inflammation. These include symptoms like chest pain, a feeling of breathlessness and a pounding or fluttering heartbeat. “The chance of these conditions occurring is very low, but you should be aware of the symptoms so that you can get prompt medical treatment to help recovery and avoid complications,” the agency said.
Two conditions were linked to the vaccines – inflammation of the heart muscle itself, known as myocarditis, and inflammation of the fluid-filled sac the heart sits in, known as pericarditis.
The EMA analysis found 145 myocarditis cases and 138 pericarditis cases from 177 million doses of Pfizer given in the European Economic Area (EEA). And of the 20 million doses of Moderna given in the EEA, 19 cases of myocarditis and pericarditis each, were reported.
The review said that five people had died as a result, but all suffered from existing health conditions or were elderly.
MHRA reported: “A consistent pattern of cases occurring more frequently in young males and shortly after the second dose of the vaccines.” It also added that these cases are extremely rare with mild conditions and a speedy recovery time.
Most cases are thought to be within 14 days of vaccination.
Although the risk is very rare, it is more likely to develop in young people – who are currently the focus on the vaccination campaign in the UK.