In an April 13 2022 editorial in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) “Covid-19 Boosters — Where from Here?” Dr. Paul Offit MD starts with the obligatory praise for mRNA Covid-19 vaccines, but then abruptly switches to a very serious note of alarm about the continued use of boosters.
NEJM has been at the nexus of positive Covid-19 publishing. Its editorial board has the advantage of reviewing a broad sweep of Covid studies. The fact that they decided to publish a blunt warning is highly significant. The message for governments, medical professionals, and medical media commentators and explainers cannot be ignored or underestimated.
The editorial raises a number of questions:
“Unfortunately, studies did not stratify patients according to whether they had coexisting conditions. Therefore, it was unclear who among the younger age groups most benefited from an additional dose.”
In summary, boosters are not very useful for younger people who are healthy. This doesn’t sound very serious, but the NEJM went on to discuss the implications.
The continued universal use of boosters, in a misguided attempt to eliminate Covid, ‘will limit the ability of booster dosing to lessen transmission.’
The consequence, NEJM warned, are problems whose full extent and eventual outcomes are unknown:
“Boosters are not risk-free, we need to clarify which groups most benefit. For example, boys and men between 16 and 29 years of age are at increased risk for myocarditis caused by mRNA vaccines.”
“And all age groups are at risk for the theoretical problem of an “original antigenic sin” — a decreased ability to respond to a new immunogen because the immune system has locked onto the original immunogen….This potential problem could limit our ability to respond to a new variant.”