MYTH BUSTING: Shawnee County infectious disease expert breaks down COVID-19 misconceptions

Coronavirus

TOPEKA (KSNT) – We have now learned how possible it is to get coronavirus after being fully vaccinated.

This time, Derik Flerlage, the infectious disease division manager for the Shawnee County Health Department, busts some popular myths floating around about the COVID-19 vaccine.

  1. Vaccines can cause infertility in men and women: MYTH

    “There’s really no known physiological or biological mechanism that the vaccines would trigger to cause something like that,” Flerlage said.

    There has been research done showing Covid-19, the infection, can cause a side effect of erectile dysfunction in men.
  2. Microchips are in the vaccine: MYTH

    “They’re not implanting anything that has anything to do with 5g, or your cell service, or anything like that,” Flerlage said.

    How can that be trusted? Flerlage said there are many reasons. One, the vaccine dosage is too small, about a milliliter.

    You can also lookup the ingredients of all of the vaccines, none of which have a secret name for microchips.

    “People talk about other things, you know, not just microchips,” Flerlage said. “They talk about metals, which are not included in the vaccine either.”
  3. The vaccine makes your arms magnetic: MYTH

    There’s a new question of the vaccine’s safety floating around on TikTok. A user actually posted a video, that has since been taken down, putting a magnet on the arm that was vaccinated. It stayed in place, showing people she was apparently magnetic. But on dry skin, the magnet doesn’t stick. Once you put water on the skin, however, or any kind of moisture, it stays put on any part of the body, not just where the vaccine is.

    “It does not cause any sort of electromagnetic reaction that goes in line with the dosages as well, they’re so tiny,” Flerlage said.

  4. The vaccine was developed too fast: MYTH

    Health officials have been preparing for a possible coronavirus pandemic.

    “The other coronaviruses, which are not COVID-19, there’s been a lot of research and studies were done on those too,” Flerlage said. “So they’ve been trying to develop vaccines for years to combat those viruses, which again are different than COVID-19, but kind of gave the scientists a leg up in their research.”

  5. If I already had COVID-19, it’s pointless for me to get the vaccine: MYTH

    Getting the vaccine even after having the virus, creates an extra layer of protection.

    “We just know that the immune response elicited from the vaccine, the immune response that the vaccine causes is reproducible to person to person,” Flerlage said. “And so it’s much more effective than people having the COVID-19 infection.”
  6. The vaccine has the live virus in it: MYTH

    “None of the vaccines have a live virus so that’s good news,” Flerlage said. “The mRNA vaccines, the Pfizer and the Moderna, they’re basically covered in a fatty layer. So the fatty layer protects what’s inside of the cell of the vaccine so it can enter our bodies, and cause the immune response. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine, they use an altered, what’s called an adenovirus, which is just a fancy word for a cold. They alter that so that it can’t replicate it as a causing issue. Then it transports the vaccine contents into your body and does the same thing as the mRNA vaccines.”
  7. The vaccine can cause medical conditions down the road: UNDETERMINED

    “We don’t know of anything at the moment that would cause any long-term medical conditions from the COVID-19 vaccines,” Flerlage said. “But that’s, of course, always being studied and being reflected.”

    It is hard to say right now if the vaccine will cause long-term medical conditions. It is always hard to know if a vaccine caused health problems in the future, because of how much our lives, health and environment change in a period of time.

    The Shawnee County Health Department requires people to wait a few minutes after getting a vaccine, to check for any possible reactions.
  8. Vaccines cause you to catch COVID-19: MYTH

    “The COVID-19 vaccines, they also don’t cause you to shed the virus and they also won’t cause you to test positive on any test that you take after administration,” Flerlage said. “There are some people that can test positive in between their first and second doses, but they’re just exposed in between building that immunity, but the actual vaccine itself is not causing a positive test.”
  9. Fetal tissue was used to make the vaccines: COMPLEX

    “It’s a really complex issue,” Flerlage said. “So, the J&J vaccine was developed using tissue, not necessarily fetal tissue. But there had been some concerns about the line that the tissue came from, actually decades ago. Then the mRNA vaccines, which is the Pfizer and the Moderna vaccines, were actually developed kind of using test tubes, so those don’t really have any affiliation with any potential fetal tissue in their development of the vaccine.”

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