Did Norway Study Show mRNA Vaccine Risk In Children?!

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Did a new study from Norway show that mRNA COVID-19 vaccines cause severe adverse events in children?!

Take a look at the viral claim, and find out what the facts really are!

 

Claim : Norway Study Shows mRNA Vaccine Risk In Children!

People are sharing an Epoch Times article which suggests that a new study in Norway show that mRNA COVID-19 vaccines cause severe adverse events in children!

Here is an excerpt from the Epoch Times article which is long (archive). Please feel free to skip to the next section for the facts!

COVID-19 Vaccines Linked to Increased Risk of Swollen Lymph Nodes in Children: Study

Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines associated with higher risk of lymphadenopathy, researchers find.

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Truth : Norway Study Shows Limited mRNA Vaccine Risk In Children!

Let’s take a closer look at the various claims in the Epoch Times article, and the study it referred to, and find out what the facts really are!

Fact #1 : It Was A Pre-Print On medRxiv

Let me start by pointing out that the study, which was conducted by researchers in Norway, has not been peer-reviewed – the first step or many in the scientific review process.

Hence, it has not been published in a journal, but in medRxiv – a preprint server operated by the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL). You can read the paper in full here – PDF.

While that does not mean its findings are wrong, such preprint papers should “not be considered for clinical application, nor relied upon for news reporting as established information“, as per CSHL.

Fact #2 : Risk Of Adverse Events Were Low

While the Epoch Times article, and comments of people sharing it, may suggest that the Norway study has shown that the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines were causing severe adverse events in children, it actually suggests the opposite.

The Norway study actually concluded that the number of adverse events, and any “statistically significant associations” were “generally low“. While it did identify “some exceptions”, the study authors did not say that they were conclusive. They only said that they should be further monitored.

Fact #3 : Lymphadenopathy Was Most Common Event

The Norway study identified lymphadenopathy as the most common “post-vaccination event”. However, lymphadenopathy isn’t as scary as it sounds.

Lymphadenopathy refers to enlarged or swollen lymph nodes that can appear for any number of reasons, most commonly an infection. Hence, it often appears in anyone – children or adults – who are suffering from infections. In fact, the study noted that lymphadenopathy was seen in both vaccinated and unvaccinated children:

Lymphadenopathy Cases Incidence
Vaccinated 651
out of 494,138
120
per 100,000 person-years
Unvaccinated 152
out of 493,360
103
per 100,000 person-years

According to a 2023 study (archive) published in the journal Vaccines, study results suggest that post-vaccination lymphadenopathy is caused by a “strong vaccine immune response“, possibly through the “B cell germinal centre response” after vaccination.

The study results also show that vaccine-induced lymphadenopathy is self-limiting, generally resolving by itself between 10 days to two months. In other words – lymphadenopathy seen after COVID-19 vaccination shows a robust response to the vaccine, and is not something to worry about.

Arguably, the biggest issue identified by the Vaccines study authors was in distinguishing such “reactive lymph nodes” from “metastatic lymph node enlargement” in patients who are already suffering from cancer.

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Fact #4 : Study Found No Vaccine Link To Deaths

I found it interesting that the Epoch Health article did not mention anything about deaths. The Norway study actually noted that it found no evidence of any deaths linked to COVID-19 vaccines:

We found no statistically significant associations with all-cause mortality within 28 days. Events were
very rare.

No Norwegian adolescents were registered with vaccine-associated death (International
Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, Tenth Revision [ICD-10] code
U12.9) during follow-up.

Fact #5 : Study Found No Vaccine Link To Arrhythmia 

Interestingly, this Norway study also found no link between COVID-19 vaccines and heart arrhythmia, even though it noted that myocarditis may potentially cause arrhythmia.

Myocarditis may lead to arrhythmia, but we observed no vaccine-arrhythmia association.

mRNA vaccines are known to cause myocarditis and pericarditis in children and young adults, generally in males. However, they have been shown to be milder and far less common than myocarditis and pericarditis caused by COVID-19 infections.

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Fact #6 : Study Did Not Compare Risk To COVID-19 Infection

Finally, I should point out that this Norway study only compared adverse events reported for vaccinated and unvaccinated children. It did not compare the risk of adverse events against COVID-19 infections.

To properly weigh the benefits against the risks of COVID-19 vaccination in children, any potential vaccine side effect should be compared to those from COVID-19 infections.

For example, the massive SAFECOVAC study showed that the risk of getting myocarditis from a COVID-19 infection is hundreds of times higher, compared to getting vaccinated against COVID-19!

Myocarditis
Risk
Per Million
People
vs
Sinovac
vs
AstraZeneca
vs
Pfizer
COVID-19 450 +300x +214x +167x
3x Pfizer 2.7 +1.8x +1.3x Baseline
3x AstraZeneca 2.1 +1.4x Baseline -0.2x
3x Sinovac 1.5 Baseline -0.3x -0.4x

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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