How dangerous is the corona vaccination for heart patients?

The corona vaccination is a ray of hope to get out of the pandemic – but it also raises questions, possible risks and side effects. People with heart problems and circulatory diseases in particular are wondering how the vaccination can affect the body and whether there are any possible risks. You’ll find more about it here.

People with previous illnesses in particular are at risk of a severe course of COVID-19, which is why vaccination is particularly important for heart patients. The German Heart Foundation recommends the corona vaccination, among others, for people with cardiovascular diseases.

Vector and mRNA vaccines are approved for cardiac patients

Two types of vaccine are currently approved. A distinction is made between mRNA vaccine and vector vaccine. The aim of both vaccines is to transport the spike protein of the coronavirus, which is responsible for spreading it in the body, in order to subsequently produce antibodies against the virus. However, the transport routes work differently:

  • mRNA vaccine:  The “messenger RNA” generally transports information in the body that is used to build certain proteins. The newly developed mRNA vaccine also uses this principle: It contains the information of the spike protein and thus provides the body with a kind of “view” of the virus. So the body knows how to recognize this. After vaccination, the immune system produces antibodies and T-cells that can react to the virus in the event of a possible infection. The mRNA stays in the body for only a few days and is degraded without any lasting consequences for the genome.
  • Vector vaccine:  The vaccine packs the information from SARS-CoV-2 into the shell of a harmless virus, also known as a vector. This is responsible for transporting the antigen, i.e. the blueprint for the spike protein. The body recreates the spike protein using the information and recognizes it as a foreign body. The immune system sounds the alarm and forms antibodies and other components of the immune system (T cells).

Two vaccines of this type are currently approved, the vector vaccines from AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson. The AstraZeneca vaccine is only given to people aged 60 and over due to increased sinus vein thrombosis in young people.

The two mRNA vaccines from BioNTech/Pfizer and Moderna are also suitable for heart patients without restrictions and have been vaccinated since the turn of the year.

Corona vaccination for heart patients: That is why it is particularly important

People with cardiovascular diseases are classified as high-risk patients and are prioritized in the order of vaccination. Nevertheless, many of those affected question the effectiveness and tolerability of the vaccination. The German Heart Foundation is clearly in favor of vaccination: The risk and consequences of a severe COVID infection are higher than the side effects and problems of a corona vaccination. In addition, the vaccination not only protects the patients themselves, but also those around them.

Vaccination is particularly recommended for people with cardiovascular diseases, including:

Häufige Nebenwirkungen der Impfung können Schmerzen an der Einstichstelle, Fieber, Müdigkeit sowie Kopf- und Gliederschmerzen sein. Diese Reaktionen sind allerdings normale Impfreaktionen, welche auch bei gesunden Menschen auftreten können.

Corona-Impfung für Herzkranke: Das ist zu beachten

Herzkranke sollten vor ihrer ersten Corona-Impfung einige Dinge berücksichtigen.

  • Gerinnungshemmende Medikamente: Patient*innen sollten im Impf-Zentrum und beim*bei der Hausarzt*ärztin auf entsprechende Medikamente und Blutverdünner hinweisen. Die Impfung sollte mit einer sehr feinen Kanüle erfolgen. Meist werden für die Corona-Impfung aber ausreichend dünne Nadeln verwendet.
  • Bei der Einnahme von Blutverdünnern empfiehlt es sich zudem, die Einstichstelle länger, etwa fünf Minuten, abzudrücken. Die Nachbeobachtungszeit sollte zwischen 15 bis 30 Minuten betragen.
  • Herzpatient*innen sollten die Medikamente nicht ohne ärztliche Absprache absetzen. Bei Unsicherheit und Fragen sollten sich Betroffene an den*die Hausarzt*ärztin wenden. Auch Erkrankungen wie Bluthochdruck sollten vor der Impfung gut eingestellt sein.

The responsible medical staff should be informed about all preparations and possible  allergies before the corona vaccination  .

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