There is a thread circulating in WhatsApp these weeks highlighting a list of 24 supposed adverse effects that can appear after receiving the vaccine against covid-19, such as the Guillain-Barré syndrome, encephalopathy, venous thromboembolism or death, in which a link to a document of the Food and Drug Administration from the US (FDA). This is FALSE. The link is a provisional list of diseases made following previous studies, side effects of similar vaccines and suspicions of regulatory bodies, but it is by no means a list of proven reactions to covid-19 vaccines.
“(Modifiable) list of possible ADVERSE EFFECTS caused by the “COVID-19 VACCINE” released by the FDA: Guillain-barré syndrome, [...] encephalopathy [...], venous thromboembolism [...] death”
In October 2020, none of the covid-19 vaccines had yet been approved because they were still in the study phase. The circulating list is a working document for the FDA, which, like other sanitary authorities, continues to monitor the possible adverse reactions that injections can cause to the population.
The only side effects detailed in the list that have finally been confirmed to date, after administering a dozen of different vaccines worldwide, are anaphylaxis (serious allergic reaction to the vaccine) and the venous thrombosis, which is being considered an atypical and very infrequent reaction. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) considers that there exists a “proven link” of this cases with the AstraZeneca and Janssen vaccines, which is studying a set of cases of thrombocytopenia (low levels of platelets)
Death as a side effect
Death, on its side, is not listed in the package leaflets as a rare adverse effect of any of the covid-19 vaccines, although it is true that some cases of venous thrombosis have ended in death, which would imply the development of a very serious adverse side effect. The FDA, together with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), declares that from the 189 million of administered vaccines between December 2020 and April 2021, 3005 death cases were notified (0,00158%) among those who received some of the approved vaccines against covid-19. After performing an analysis of the available clinical information, in which death certificates were included, autopsies and medical records, “it was not found that the vaccination has contributed to the death of the patients”. Even so, they “continue investigating reports of adverse effects, in which deaths are included”.
Death as a side effect is something presented by some drugs, such as Adalat, which is used to treat the chronic stable angina pectoris (exertional angina), or the vasospastic angina pectoris, or tioridazina, used to treat schizophrenia symptoms. For the moment, vaccines against covid-19 are not in this list: “There have been deaths of old people and in a fragile state after receiving the vaccine —in Europe, this population has received Pfizer’s vaccine—. Nonetheless, no causal association has been found between these deaths and the vaccine”, indicatesAdelaida Sarukhan, immunologist and scientific writer at the Institute of Global Health at Barcelona (ISGlobal, in Catalan), to Verificat. According to the scientist, for the moment, “the only cause of death probably tied to this vaccine —in particular, with AstraZeneca’s and Johnson & Johnson’s— is the venous thrombosis with thrombocytopenia”. Specifically, to date of 1 April 18 deaths have been notified in the European Union, 7 in the United Kingdom, 1 in Australia, and 1 in the US.
Non-proven side effects
The side effects cited in the message which have NOT been confirmed by any of the covid-19 vaccines are: Guillain-Barré syndrome, Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, Transverse Myelitis, Encephalitis/myelitis/encephalomyelitis, Meningoencephalitis/Meningitis, Encephalopathy, Convulsions/attacks, Narcolepsy and cataplexy, Acute myocardial infarction, Myocarditis/pericarditis, Autoimmune disease, Death, Miscarriage, Other acute demyelinating diseases, Non-anaphylactic allergic reactions, Disseminated intravascular coagulation, Arthritis and arthralgia/joint pain, Kawasaki disease, Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, Vaccine-enhanced disease.
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