COVID-19 infection, vaccine linked to POTS heart disorder, study suggests

Researchers confirmed a link in some patients between postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and COVID-19 infection and vaccination, though the risk was higher from COVID-19.

The study, published in Nature Cardiovascular Research on Dec. 12, analyzed data from more than 280,000 patients who received a COVID-19 vaccine and more than 12,000 patients with a confirmed COVID-19 infection. Patients were treated at Los Angeles-based Cedars-Sinai between 2020 and 2022. The majority of vaccinated people had an mRNA vaccine either from Pfizer or Moderna. The people with confirmed COVID-19 were unvaccinated.

The study found a minor link between COVID-19 vaccination and POTS, in particular with the first dose of a vaccine. However, a COVID-19 infection was associated with five times greater risk of developing POTS than the vaccine.

"The main message here is that while we see a potential link between COVID-19 vaccination and POTS, preventing COVID-19 through vaccination is still the best way to reduce your risk of developing POTS," Alan Kwan, MD, a cardiologist at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, told NBC News.


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