Dr. Gregory Michael, an apparently healthy 56-year-old obstetrician from Florida, died shortly after receiving Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine.
The CDC says that it is now investigating the circumstances surrounding Michael’s death to see whether the vaccine was in any way involved.
The Circumstances of Gregory Michael’s Death
Dr. Michael was an OB-GYN at Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami, Florida. On December 18, 2020, he received a dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine.
Sometime later, he appeared to develop a rare disorder called thrombocytopenia, which disables the body’s ability to produce platelets, clot blood, and prevent or mitigate internal bleeding. By all accounts—including information shared by his wife, Heidi Neckelmann—he appeared to be perfectly healthy and had no serious health problems prior to the sudden onset of his thrombocytopenia.
According to Michael’s wife, he had sought medical attention three days after receiving the vaccine because his skin was covered in blotches. Such blotches are indicative of internal bleeding.
On January 3, Michael finally suffered a stroke as a result of his sudden internal bleeding and died.
An autopsy was conducted on the doctor, and samples from the physician were sent to the CDC to enable them to conduct their own investigation. According to Darren Caprara, Director of Operations for the Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner Department, Dr. Michael’s “cause of death is pending the completion of studies.”
Pfizer has denied that its vaccine was likely to have been a major contributing factor to the doctor’s sudden and unexpected death, saying that, “To date, millions of people have been vaccinated and we are closely monitoring all adverse events in individuals receiving our vaccine.”
Pending further investigation, the pharmaceutical giant appears to be chalking up Michael’s death to an unfortunate accident, saying that “serious adverse events, including deaths that are unrelated to the vaccine,” can happen at rates equivalent to the normal background death rate for all of these other causes.
The CDC has also promised to closely investigate the case and get to the truth of what really happened. It says it is tracking information related to all side effects from all COVID-19 vaccines.
Dr. Jeffrey L. Spivak, a Johns Hopkins University specialist in blood disorders, is virtually certain that the vaccine contributed in some form to Dr. Michael’s untimely death.
So far, 9 million people in the U.S. have been vaccinated against COVID-19 using either Pfizer’s or Moderna’s vaccine. There have been 29 reported cases of anaphylaxis so far. Long-term side effects of vaccination are not yet known.