Last week, SBM devoted a lot of digital ink to a poorly done study analyzing the VAERS database for myocarditis after COVID-19 vaccination that was widely publicized to imply that the vaccine is more dangerous than the disease. Three out of the four authors should have known better, leading me to ask: How did we get here?
In response to the dumpster-diving VAERS study published earlier this month, pediatric cardiologist and guest blogger Dr. Frank Han adds context by explaining how cardiologists think about and diagnose myocarditis.
Dumpster diving in the VAERS database to find more COVID-19 vaccine-associated myocarditis in children
"Dumpster diving" is a term used to describe studies using data from the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System database by authors, almost always antivaxxers, who don't understand its limitations. Last week, non-antivax doctors who should know better fell into this trap when they promoted their study suggesting that COVID-19 mRNA vaccines are more dangerous to children than the disease.
Whether myocarditis is serious or not depends on the symptoms it produces and the damages it does, not on its underlying cause. Those who write about COVID-19 and vaccines should try to be consistent and thorough.