Systematic review of spontaneous reports of myocarditis and pericarditis in transplant recipients and immunocompromised patients following COVID-19 mRNA vaccination


OBJECTIVES: To determine whether spontaneous reporting rates of myocarditis and pericarditis differed in immunocompromised patients compared with the whole population overall, and in terms of demographics, vaccine dose and time-to-onset. DESIGN: Systematic review of spontaneously reported data from the European Union/European Economic Area (EU/EEA), the USA and the UK. DATA SOURCES: EudraVigilance (EU/EEA), Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS; USA) and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (UK) spontaneous reporting databases were searched from date of vaccine launch to 1 December 2021. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA: Publicly available spontaneous reporting data for ‘myocarditis’ and ‘pericarditis’ from EU/EEA and USA following COVID-19 messenger RNA vaccines. Reports with comorbidities or concurrent medication indicative of transplantation, HIV infection or cancer (‘immunocompromised’ population) were compared with each overall database population. DATA EXTRACTION AND SYNTHESIS: Two researchers extracted data. Spontaneously reported events of myocarditis and pericarditis were presented for immunocompromised populations for each data source, stratified by age, sex, dose and time-to-onset (where available). Seriousness of each event was determined according to the International Conference on Harmonisation of Technical Requirements for Registration of Pharmaceuticals for Human Use (ICH) Guideline E2A definition. Proportional reporting ratio (PRR) was calculated. RESULTS: There were 178 reports of myocarditis and pericarditis among immunocompromised individuals overall. Seriousness was comparable between the immunocompromised and overall populations in both databases. No trends in age or sex were observed among immunocompromised individuals. Most reports followed a second vaccine dose and occurred within 14 days. The frequency of reporting was similar to the wider population (PRR=1.36 (95% CI=0.89 to 1.82) for VAERS population). CONCLUSIONS: Myocarditis and pericarditis following COVID-19 vaccination are very rare, and benefits of COVID-19 vaccination continue to outweigh any perceived risks. Reporting rates of myocarditis and pericarditis were similar in immunocompromised individuals, however defining characteristics differed compared with the whole population; therefore, continued monitoring of adverse events following vaccination remains vital to understand differences between population subgroups.


Lane S, Yeomans A, Shakir S




  • Epidemiology and Determinants of Health
    • Epidemiology
  • Population(s)
    • General HIV+ population
    • General HIV- population
  • Prevention, Engagement and Care Cascade
    • Prevention
  • Prevention
    • Biomedical interventions
  • Co-morbidities
    • Cardiovascular


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