In late May, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) began looking into reports that a very small number of adolescents and young adults developed the heart issue, myocarditis, within a week of receiving the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine. The CDC received several dozen reports through routine safety surveillance mechanisms (Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting Systems or VAERS).
Myocarditis is an inflammation of the heart muscle that decreases the ability of the heart to pump blood normally. In general, there is no evidence that congenital heart disease increases the risk of myocarditis.
The FDA, CDC and other public health agencies are continuing to monitor and investigate these reports and determine if there is any association or link to COVID-19 vaccination. At this time, the consensus from the medical and scientific community is that the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination, and subsequent prevention of COVID-19 disease and complications of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) and Post-Acute COVID Syndrome (“long COVID”), far outweigh the rare, possible risk of myocarditis.
Children’s National continues to recommend COVID-19 vaccination for all eligible individuals.