Fact checked: The Incidence of Myocarditis and Pericarditis in Post COVID-19 Unvaccinated Patients-A Large Population-Based Study – PubMed


The Israeli study makes a misleading claim.


J Clin Med. 2022 Apr 15;11(8):2219. doi: 10.3390/jcm11082219.

The Incidence of Myocarditis and Pericarditis in Post COVID-19 Unvaccinated Patients-A Large Population-Based Study

Ortal Tuvali  1 Sagi Tshori  2 Estela Derazne  3 Rebecca Regina Hannuna  2 Arnon Afek  3   4 Dan Haberman  1 Gal Sella  1 Jacob George  1


Myocarditis and pericarditis are potential post-acute cardiac sequelae of COVID-19 infection, arising from adaptive immune responses. We aimed to study the incidence of post-acute COVID-19 myocarditis and pericarditis. Retrospective cohort study of 196,992 adults after COVID-19 infection in Clalit Health Services members in Israel between March 2020 and January 2021. Inpatient myocarditis and pericarditis diagnoses were retrieved from day 10 after positive PCR. Follow-up was censored on 28 February 2021, with minimum observation of 18 days. The control cohort of 590,976 adults with at least one negative PCR and no positive PCR were age- and sex-matched. Since the Israeli vaccination program was initiated on 20 December 2020, the time-period matching of the control cohort was calculated backward from 15 December 2020. Nine post-COVID-19 patients developed myocarditis (0.0046%), and eleven patients were diagnosed with pericarditis (0.0056%). In the control cohort, 27 patients had myocarditis (0.0046%) and 52 had pericarditis (0.0088%). Age (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR] 0.96, 95% confidence interval [CI]; 0.93 to 1.00) and male sex (aHR 4.42; 95% CI, 1.64 to 11.96) were associated with myocarditis. Male sex (aHR 1.93; 95% CI 1.09 to 3.41) and peripheral vascular disease (aHR 4.20; 95% CI 1.50 to 11.72) were associated with pericarditis. Post COVID-19 infection was not associated with either myocarditis (aHR 1.08; 95% CI 0.45 to 2.56) or pericarditis (aHR 0.53; 95% CI 0.25 to 1.13). We did not observe an increased incidence of neither pericarditis nor myocarditis in adult patients recovering from COVID-19 infection.



Multiple studies showed that COVID-19 increases the risk of heart inflammation more than vaccines do; study in Israel misleadingly used to claim otherwise


Israeli study showed that COVID-19 doesn’t increase the risk of heart inflammation


SOURCE: Marina Medvin, Twitter, 8 Nov. 2022  


Inadequate support: The study only included myocarditis and pericarditis diagnoses made at least ten days after a positive SARS-CoV-2 test, when patients are recovering, but not cases during COVID-19 itself. The study also included only a limited subset of myocarditis and pericarditis diagnostic codes, leaving out in particular diagnostic codes specific for myocarditis associated with viral infection.
Cherry-picking: Multiple large-scale studies reported an increased risk of cardiovascular complications associated with COVID-19, including myocarditis and pericarditis, which are ignored by claims like this.


Myocarditis and pericarditis are conditions involving inflammation of the heart. Both conditions are commonly caused by viral infections, such as COVID-19 and the flu. The COVID-19 mRNA vaccines have also been associated with a higher risk of myocarditis, particularly in young men. However, the risk of myocarditis is significantly higher after COVID-19 than after vaccination. Reliable scientific evidence shows that the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination outweigh their risks.

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