The Swedish Public Health Agency has decided to suspend the use of Moderna’s vaccine Spikevax, for everyone born in 1991 and later, for precautionary reasons. The cause is signals of an increased risk of side effects such as inflammation of the heart muscle or heart sac. However, the risk of being affected is very small.
Myocarditis (pericarditis) and pericarditis usually go away on their own, but the symptoms need to be assessed by a doctor. The conditions are most common among young men, in connection with, for example, viral infections such as covid-19. In 2019, approximately 300 people under the age of 30 were treated in hospital with myocarditis.
Data point to an increased incidence also in connection with vaccination against covid-19 , mainly in adolescents and young adults and mainly in boys and men. For the individual, the risk of being affected is very small, it is a very rare side effect.
New preliminary analyzes from Swedish and Nordic data sources indicate that the connection is especially clear when it comes to Moderna’s vaccine Spikevax, especially after the second dose. The increase in risk is seen within four weeks after the vaccination, mainly within the first two weeks.
The Swedish Public Health Agency has decided to recommend a break for all use of Spikevax for people born in 1991 and later. The Comirnaty vaccine from Pfizer / Biontech is recommended for these age groups instead. The decision is valid until 1 December 2021. The Swedish Public Health Agency will return with a notice of recommendation after this date.
– We follow the situation closely and act quickly to ensure that vaccinations against covid-19 are always as safe as possible and at the same time provide effective protection against covid-19, says Anders Tegnell, head of department and state epidemiologist at the Swedish Public Health Agency.
People born in 1991 and later who have received a dose of Moderna’s vaccine will not be offered a second dose of covid-19 vaccine at present, discussions are ongoing about the best solution for that group. In total, there are about 81,000 people.
– Those who have been vaccinated recently, with their first or second dose of Moderna’s vaccine, do not have to worry about the risk is very small, but it is good to know what symptoms you need to be vigilant about, says Anders Tegnell.
Both myocarditis and pericarditis often go away on their own, without causing any lasting problems, but suspicious symptoms should be assessed by a doctor at, for example, a health center or emergency room. Medical treatment and monitoring in hospital may be needed in established cases.
Symptoms of myocarditis and / or pericarditis include:
- Fatigue and shortness of breath
- Irregular heartbeat and palpitations
- Fever and pain in the body
- A feeling of pressure or weight over the chest
- It hurts to breathe deeply
- Pain in the left or middle of the chest