Chennai: Popular Tamil film comedian Vivek on Friday suffered a severe heart attack and was critical in hospital, a day after he took a Covaxin shot at a government facility, triggering talks about a reaction due to the COVID-19 vaccine. However, doctors and Tamil Nadu Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan took pains to explain that his condition “may not be” related to the vaccination.
Vivek, who got vaccinated at the Omandurar Government Medical College Hospital in Chennai on Thursday, had even addressed a media conference at the venue in the presence of Radhakrishnan to give a push to the vaccination drive. However, on Friday morning, family members rushed him to a private hospital in an unconscious state.
“He was resuscitated in the emergency room by specialists. Later, he underwent Emergency Coronary Angiogram followed by angioplasty. He is currently in critical condition on ECMO in the Intensive Care Unit. This is an acute coronary syndrome with cardiogenic shock. This is a separate cardiac event. It may not be due to COVID vaccination,” the private hospital said in a statement in the evening.
The panic caused by rumours that it was caused by vaccination, prompted the Health Secretary to brief the media on the development. “This came as a shock for us. He had earlier tested negative for COVID-19. This is a temporal association. He had a 100% block in the LAD and has been treated for it now. A 100% block does not happen in a day. On Thursday, 860 persons had taken the Covaxin shot at the same hospital [as Vivek]... Anaphylactic reaction following the vaccine occurs in 15 to 30 minutes for which we always keep a crash cart ready,” Radhakrishnan explained.