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Sept. 1, 2021, 7:05 a.m. EDT

CDC study finds COVID-19 increases risk of myocarditis almost 16 times although it still remains rare

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By Ciara Linnane

A new study published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention late Tuesday found that patients with COVID-19 had nearly 16 times the risk of developing myocarditis than people who did not have it, with risk varying by age and sex. Myocarditis is an inflammation of the heart muscle that is associated with viral infections, and can cause hospitalization, heart failure and sudden death. "These findings underscore the importance of implementing evidence-based COVID-19 prevention strategies, including vaccination, to reduce the public health impact of COVID-19 and its associated complications," the authors wrote. The study was conducted in the period stretching from March of 2020 through January of 2021. By age, risk ratios ranged from about 7.0 for patients aged 16-39 years to greater than 30.0 for patients aged above 16 years or above 75 years. The data were obtained from the Premier Healthcare Database Special COVID-19 Release, a broad hospital-based database. The CDC analysis emphasized that myocarditis is still a rare occurrence.

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