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Clin Infect Dis. 2008 Mar 15;46 Suppl 3:S251-7. doi: 10.1086/524741.

Follow-up of cardiovascular adverse events after smallpox vaccination among civilians in the United States, 2003.

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  • 1National Immunization Program, Division of Viral and Rickettsial Diseases, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.


Limited information exists regarding intermediate or long-term consequences of cardiac adverse events (CAEs) after smallpox vaccination. We conducted follow up at 5-12 months after vaccination of 203 US civilian vaccinees who reported a possible CAE. Among 31 of the 33 with confirmed CAEs, at least 1 health-related quality-of-life change persisted for approximately 48%; approximately 87% missed work (average, 11.5 days). Among 168 of the 170 case patients with other reported cardiovascular conditions, at least 1 health-related quality-of-life change persisted for approximately 40%; almost 49% missed work (average, 10.2 days). Almost all vaccinees with possible CAEs were working the same number of hours at follow-up compared with before vaccination. Although intermediate-term consequences among possible postvaccination CAEs were not considered serious, lost days of work and a decline in health-related quality of life at the time of follow-up were common, resulting in personal economic and quality-of-life burden.

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