The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute, was published last week on a preprint server, so before being reviewed and peer reviewed. She analyzed the rate of cases of myocarditis and pericarditis (an inflammation of the heart) in people who received the vaccine from Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech.
Researchers identified 32 patients who experienced this rare side effect out of a total of 32,379 doses of messenger RNA vaccine injected in Ottawa between June 1 and July 31, 2021. This equates to a rate of 1 in 1,000, which is a rate much higher than what international data had shown so far.
However, this result is due to a major error by the researchers, who were wrong in the actual number of doses administered during this two-month period, even though the data is published daily by the public health of the Ontario. In fact, over 800,000 doses of vaccine were administered between June 1 and July 31. The true rate of myocarditis and pericarditis is therefore 1 in 25,000.
The rate in the study is incorrect, admitted Dr. Peter Liu, Scientific Director of the University of Ottawa Heart Institute and co-author of the study, in an interview with CBC News.
On Friday evening, the study was removed from the medRxiv server (a preprint server for health sciences) with a link to a statement citing a
major underestimation the number of doses administered.
Preprinting, or prepublication, is a normal step in the publication of scientific studies allowing researchers to share their preliminary results with their colleagues, who can then review them and provide comments. These findings should not be used to guide clinical practice or health-related behaviors and should not be reported in the media as established information.
Source : medRxiv
In order to avoid misleading colleagues, the public and the media, we, the authors, wish to remove this study on the basis of incorrect data., is it written.
We thank our peers, who did everything in their power to point out our error to us. We apologize to all those who were upset or disturbed by our report.
Lead author of the study, Dr Andrew Crean, explains that the error was discovered several days after the report was posted to the server. The researchers then quickly requested that the study be withdrawn.
COVID-19 vaccines are safe
Occasionally, errors are revealed at the pre-publication stage, and faulty studies are usually removed quickly.
It’s science that does what it needs to doeven says Ivan Oransky, co-founder of Retraction Watch, a site that tracks errors in scientific journals.
But this time around, the study’s results were posted on social media before it was taken off the server and were shared en masse by groups resistant to the COVID-19 vaccination.
The University of Ottawa Heart Institute was therefore keen to set the record straight in a statement sent to CBC News.
COVID-19 vaccines are safe and have been shown to be effective against the disease. We invite anyone who has not yet received their vaccine doses to do so.
Data has shown a risk of heart inflammation from the COVID-19 vaccine, but this is a very rare side effect.
The vast majority of people, even the youngest, will not get myocarditis after receiving the vaccine, reassures Dr. Christopher Labos, cardiologist and epidemiologist from Montreal. And the small proportion of people who experience this side effect will experience mild symptoms that can be treated without hospital care, he concludes.
With information from Adam Miller, CBC