My last post teased my summer illness story that I’ll continue writing on my ‘personal’ blog. Springtime is coming, which will create some writing challenges. But for now, understand that I had lifesaving open-heart surgery at UC San Diego, called pulmonary endarterectomy, that included hours of deep hypothermic cardiac arrest.
I’m looking forward to walking the neighborhood hills, without oxygen, in a month or so.
I have no idea why my lungs filled with blood clots in mid-late 2021. I’m six feet tall and weigh 165 lbs., a nonsmoker, and I’ve never really been sick. I get regular exercise. I had the first COVID shot in February of 2021, and I’ve had all the boosters. I’ve never tested positive for COVID.
I worked continuously in Wisconsin over the past few years, seeing patients in person without closing my doors or requiring masks. In 2021 I worked in a methadone-assisted treatment program and saw patients all day across from my desk – patients who lived in crowded housing and even shelters.
I routinely ask my patients if they are vaccinated just out of curiosity. I would estimate that 10% at most have had a COVID shot. My patients range in age from 18 to 75 yrs. old, yet none of my patients have been hospitalized for COVID. Over the past few months, several patients had COVID, but nobody described it as horrible. I usually hear it was ‘like a bad cold.’
Last month I saw that Morning Joe guy say he was grateful he had all the vaccines because he was sick with COVID for a month. My son lives in NYC, so I know how bad things were, but there is a disconnect between the value of vaccinations and reality. But hey — I’m vaccinated.
Many people know there is a system to report vaccine complications because every news story about a COVID vaccine complaint states that ‘no connection has been found between that illness and the vaccine adverse event reporting system (VAERS).
What is this vaccine adverse event reporting system? How many doctors use it, and how helpful has it been over the years?
The CDC estimates that historically 1% – 10% of vaccine adverse events are reported to VAERS. So I started asking former classmates, my doctors, and docs I know whether they have ever reported to VAERS. Nobody has. Not neurologists who treat stroke patients. Not the people who fixed my clotted lungs. Not the docs who saw two of my patients last year, one for myocarditis and one for a brain blood clot.
When I ask why those things were not reported, I always hear the same answer: because they aren’t known to be associated with the vaccine. But how do we know whether things are associated if they are not reported?
The CDC website says, ‘ The FDA requires healthcare providers to report any death after COVID-19 vaccination to VAERS, even if it’s unclear whether the vaccine was the cause.’ If that’s true, few doctors got the memo. The same site also states that blood clots, myocarditis, and other complications happen but are ‘rare.’ If that’s true, I have the unluckiest practice in the world. One of the few patients I see who WAS vaccinated was treated at Mayo Clinic for myocarditis and pericarditis that developed two weeks after his COVID vaccine. Another had a clot in the sinus system of her brain. I had a large pulmonary embolus.
VAERS isn’t the only tool to monitor vaccine safety. For elderly patients, the FDA-CMS near real-time active surveillance program monitors healthcare trends in people over 65 by following Medicare claims. That system is thought to be more sensitive and timelier than VAERS. For example, in July 2022 the CDC reported that the system found an elevated risk, after vaccination, of pulmonary embolus, acute MI, DIC, and immune thrombocytopenia. Their release included the comforting statement that VAERS has not detected those associations. Great!
A CDC paper from last month found, after statistical manipulation that is over my head, that only pulmonary embolus met the ‘threshold’ for a connection. Others stepped up to provide cover, and finding accurate answers requires careful reading. For example, a Hopkins paper says, ‘additional studies show the risk of myocarditis to be 16 times greater among those infected with COVID-19 than the uninfected, suggesting that full vaccination is helpful in preventing myocarditis and other complications of the disease.’
Note the word ‘suggesting?’ The study they referred to looked at myocarditis in people with COVID and EXCLUDED vaccinated patients. Yes, people with COVID have high rates of myocarditis. The study had nothing to do with vaccinated patients – and we know that vaccinated patients still catch COVID. Yet the Hopkins researchers claim the study ‘suggests’ vaccines PREVENT myocarditis – something the study never addressed.
VAERS has been politicized in the COVID era, and government ‘scientists’ believe many reports related to COVID shouldn’t be accepted. But the VAERS site includes multiple warnings about felony charges for filing false reports. The prior linked article misleads by stating that VAERS doesn’t require verification, but the CDC only releases data they have verified. Nobody has called me about my report (which I ended up doing myself) so my PE will be screened out by the CDC. Read further to see the huge discrepancy between ‘verified’ data and the raw numbers reported to VAERS.
Raw data from VAERS is published on a website using data accessed from VAERS. View the data in the image above, or view all of the data, state by state, at their website www.openvaers.com. The CDC says VAERS captures 1% – 10% of real adverse events, Even if those were all of the adverse events, do they appear rare to you?
Has VAERS EVER resulted in useful findings? Yes – glad you asked. The oral polio vaccine came out in the early 1960s. The same dosing schedule was used until 1997 when VAERS reports of paralysis in vaccinated children resulted in fewer vaccine doses. IT TOOK 30 YEARS TO NOTICE PARALYSIS FROM THE POLIO VACCINE! Based on 30 years of VAERS the CDC estimates that close to 300 children developed permanent paralysis from the polio vaccine over 30 years. But, of course, they only count the reported ones, so who knows the actual number? The CMS real-time surveillance only covers elderly patients. How many pediatricians reported infantile paralysis to VAERS? 1%? 10%?
Given that the COVID vaccine was produced and tested over a very short time, shouldn’t the government have paid MORE attention to a reporting system? Rather than shut down the debate, shouldn’t our healthcare bureaucrats have encouraged doctors to report side effects? I know – God forbid someone loses faith in the FDA, which was apparently the FDA’s largest concern according to newly released emails.
Everyone with solid opinions about COVID vaccinations should take a chill pill. The polio vaccine was developed over decades. Then it took 30 years after release to recognize that it could paralyze children. The vaccine reporting system is likely used less now than it was 50 yrs. We already know of some severe side effects of the COVID vaccine, created in one year, after just two years of use. Does nobody think we will know more in 30 years??
As for me, I’m just curious. My wife would prefer I avoid further boosters, but I’m less concerned since I’m now on warfarin for life. I grew up in an era when everyone questioned what the government told them. Do people think that the government has changed that much, that fast? Or has the ‘my team’ thing gone too far? That would be silly since Biden’s CDC is Trump’s CDC is Obama’s CDC is Bush’s CDC.
The same people who vigorously defend the government often denigrate private businesses and industry. Do they realize – they are the same people? Where do they think government people come from, and where do they go?
I believe that the more information is hidden and blocked, the less everyone will know. And the cost of that ignorance will impact everyone. Ironic that the more we surround ourselves with ‘information’, the less anyone looks behind the headlines. Or maybe that’s the plan all along.