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Covid Australia 2022: Teen misses HSC after pericarditis jab reaction as cardiologist warns

A teenage schoolgirl has revealed how she had to miss her HSC exams after a mandatory Covid jab left her with a painful heart condition for months.

Now a Sydney cardiologist has called for an end to the use of mRNA vaccines like Pfizer and Moderna after seeing an increase in jab-related heart disease.

Monica Eskandar, 18, was taken to hospital just hours after her first Covid vaccination last September with terrifying chest pains.

Doctors later diagnosed her with pericarditis, a condition linked to mRNA Covid jabs like Pfizer and Moderna, which cause painful inflammation of the heart lining.

Monica Eskandar, 18, (pictured) was taken to hospital just hours after her first Covid vaccination last September with terrifying chest pains

“Getting Covid is ten times worse than getting vaccinated – but we don’t need to use mRNA vaccines like Pfizer and Moderna,” cardiologist Dr Ross Walker told the Daily Mail Australia.

Cardiologist Dr.  Sydney's Ross Walker (pictured) has called for the use of mRNA vaccines such as Pfizer and Moderna to be phased out after seeing an increase in jab-related heart disease.

Cardiologist Dr.  Sydney's Ross Walker (pictured) has called for the use of mRNA vaccines such as Pfizer and Moderna to be phased out after seeing an increase in jab-related heart disease.

Cardiologist Dr. Sydney’s Ross Walker (pictured) has called for the use of mRNA vaccines such as Pfizer and Moderna to be phased out after seeing an increase in jab-related heart disease.

“We need to put COVID in perspective where it is now, not where it was 12 months ago, because it has changed and I think we are seeing a change.”

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization last year made mRNA vaccines mandatory for all booster injections unless specifically dangerous to individuals.

But dr. Walker said he has no idea why.

“We have alternatives like AstraZeneca and Novavax that are just as good,” he said.

‘I’ve seen many people get reactions to the vaccine, who then get complaints for another three to six months.

“I have seen 60-70 patients in my own practice in the past 12 months who had similar reactions.

“I’ve seen other people with chest pain, shortness of breath, palpitations.”

TYPES OF VACCINES

mRNA vaccines such as Pfizer and Moderna use genetically engineered mRNA to instruct your cells to make the S protein found on the surface of the COVID-19 virus. This causes your body to produce antibodies. If you later become infected with Covid, these antibodies will fight the virus.

Vector vaccines like AstraZeneca using genetic material from the COVID-19 virus in a modified version of another virus (viral vector). When the viral vector enters your cells, it instructs your cells to make copies of the S protein. Once your cells display the S proteins on their surface, your immune system responds by producing antibodies and defensive white blood cells to fight off the virus if you become infected.

Protein subunit vaccine such as Novavax ingest only the parts of a virus that best stimulate your immune system. This type of COVID-19 vaccine contains harmless S proteins. Once your immune system recognizes the S proteins, it makes antibodies and defensive white blood cells to fight the virus if you become infected.

Source: Mayo Clinic

ATAGI has blocked second booster shots (the fourth in total) for most people under 30, unless they are specifically at risk, due to fears of side effects.

“A 30-year-old who gets Covid probably won’t have any problems with it unlike a 60 or 70-year-old,” ATAGI member Professor Cheng said earlier this month.

‘A 30-year-old is optimally protected with three doses.

“But the more doses you get, the less benefit you get from it and then we start to worry about causing side effects.”

Government figures say there have been 136,000 cases of adverse cardio reactions associated with jabs in more than 63 million vaccine doses.

Only 0.2 percent of the population is affected by cardiac side effects, but the impact for those affected can be devastating.

Ms Eskandar, from Sydney, missed having her HSC fully seated due to the jab-induced pericarditis, which she said was ironic as that was the only reason she was being vaccinated.

‘I was forced to get the shot to have my HSC sit in,’ Ms Eskandar told Ben Fordham. “But the day I got it, I got a negative reaction.

“After many specialists and examinations, they discovered that I had pericarditis as a direct result of the vaccine. I was in treatment for six months.

“I was in severe pain, and irony of all ironies, I was too sick after all that to sit my HSC.”

She revealed how she had to battle doctors to get diagnosed with the condition after her symptoms were repeatedly dismissed.

Doctors initially insisted the condition only affected men, not teenage girls, but she persisted until an ultrasound finally confirmed the diagnosis.

“I got my first shot and I immediately started feeling sick,” she said. My arm swells up and hurts. I went home, I took a nap.

“As soon as I woke up, my eyes were very swollen. I had a rash and my lips were very swollen.

Monica Eskandar (pictured) had to battle with doctors to get diagnosed with the condition after her symptoms were repeatedly abated despite pain and agony

Monica Eskandar (pictured) had to battle with doctors to get diagnosed with the condition after her symptoms were repeatedly abated despite pain and agony

Monica Eskandar (pictured) had to battle with doctors to get diagnosed with the condition after her symptoms were repeatedly abated despite pain and agony

“My mother called the ambulance and as we waited for the ambulance to arrive, I started having severe pain – it wasn’t a stitch, it was like a cramp in the chest.

‘You can’t breathe. You can’t sit, you can’t lie down. It’s terrible. You really feel like you’re having a heart attack.

“I just held my chest and told my mom something is really wrong with my heart.”

WHAT IS PERICARDITIS

Pericarditis is swelling and irritation of the thin, sac-like tissue around the heart (pericardium).

Pericarditis often causes sharp chest pain.

The chest pain occurs when the irritated layers of the pericardium rub against each other.

Pericarditis is usually mild and resolves without treatment.

Source: Mayo Clinic

Paramedics put her on an EKG and suspected it was pericarditis and sent her to a doctor who told her to go home, take Panadol and rest for a few days.

“I did, but it got worse,” she said. “It started spreading to my shoulder and my back and I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat. I literally couldn’t move.

“It was horrible, absolutely horrible.”

After the ultrasound confirmed Covid-related pericarditis, Ms Eskandar was cleared of a second dose of the vaccine and put on a 24-hour heart monitor.

She has now had to get an ATAR rating based on studies throughout her school career after missing her Year 12 exams.

“After 13 years of school, I wasn’t on my HSC,” she revealed. “According to my past results, I got an ATAR, so luckily I did well in those last 13 years!”

Covid has also been linked to myocarditis, similar but usually more serious than pericarditis, where the middle layer of the heart wall becomes inflamed.

It can lead to heart failure and sudden death, and may require a pacemaker to be fitted.

In the general population, the rate of myocarditis from Covid is about the same as myocarditis from Covid shots, at 3.2 per 100,000.

But Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration has found that the risk increases significantly after mRNA-based vaccines for boys aged 12-17 and men under 30.

About 24 boys aged 12-17 in 100,000 can develop myocarditis after being vaccinated with Moderna, while that risk is about 13 per 100,000 for those vaccinated with Pfizer.

Men under 30 have a risk of 23 in 100,000 after moderna shots and 9 in 100,000 for Pfizer.

‘These mRNA vaccines are very pro-inflammatory,’ said Dr Walker. “It’s very rare to have full-blown myocarditis where the hearts are like a big floppy bag not pumping properly.

“But I’ve seen a lot of people get chest pain, shortness of breath, palpitations, and their hearts seem fine.

ATAGI still recommends a first booster/third jab for the general population as the benefits outweigh the risks (pictured shows a Year 12 student being stabbed in Sydney in 2021)

ATAGI still recommends a first booster/third jab for the general population as the benefits outweigh the risks (pictured shows a Year 12 student being stabbed in Sydney in 2021)

ATAGI still recommends a first booster/third jab for the general population as the benefits outweigh the risks (pictured shows a Year 12 student being stabbed in Sydney in 2021)

“They have evidence of some changes on the EKG or some heart damage on the blood tests.”

Through the end of October, TGA had 704 reports of myocarditis from 44.2 million Pfizer doses of Pfizer, and 115 from 5.4 million Moderna doses, with only one Covid jab-related myocarditis death.

ATAGI still recommends a first booster/third shot for the general population as the benefits outweigh the risks.

But it has blocked approval for a fourth jab/second booster for most under 50 after the risk versus potential benefit made it unnecessary.

A third booster/fifth shot has still not been approved for the general population in the summer, despite the current outbreak.

ATAGI believes the general public can wait until winter approaches and another possible outbreak before the next vaccination campaign.

The TGA added: “Based on current evidence, the population-level benefits of vaccination continue to far outweigh the risks for the mRNA vaccines.”

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