The bodybuilder died of COVID-19, not the vaccine as social media posts claim

The bodybuilder died of COVID-19, not the vaccine as social media posts claim

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A 62-year-old bodybuilder who had heart disease has died after contracting COVID-19. But vaccine opponents falsely suggest that he died from the COVID-19 vaccine. he didn’t. He had been vaccinated 18 months before his death.

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The age-old fallacy that athletes have been dropping dead due to COVID-19 vaccination has been thoroughly discreditedbut it is still spreading.

One of the most recent additions to this aggregate claim is the death of Doug Brignolea 62 year old bodybuilder he died at his home in California on October 13.

Vaccine opponents he clung to his death, in particular, because he had advocated taking COVID-19 vaccines when they initially became available.

On April 4, 2021, Brignole aware posted a photo of himself receiving the injection on Facebook, writing, “I’m vaccinated! Well, the first of two. Let’s get this over with so we can get back to traveling, going to concerts and having fun. My shot was yesterday, and I had no problems with it. My delts were a little sore, but otherwise fine. We are all in this together, so let’s do our part to beat him.”

The next day, Brignole responded to commenters who expressed skepticism about the vaccines. The aware:: “I have enough confidence in the vaccine, based on my research, to achieve it. Those of you who think the vaccine kills people can use me as proof. If I die, you were right. If I don’t die and have no ill effects, you were wrong and you should admit it (at least to yourselves). Better yet, you need to admit that you were duped and tell the world who duped you, so that other people can benefit from avoiding those fearmongers.”

A year and a half later, Brignole died. He had nothing to do with the vaccine.

Nevertheless, publications in Social media they have highlighted Brignole’s spring 2021 statement and suggested that his unrelated death somehow serves as evidence for the unsubstantiated claim that COVID-19 vaccines have caused widespread deaths. Brignole’s initial Facebook post about getting vaccinated, from spring 2021, is now full of comments suggesting that the vaccine killed him.

The Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner report because Brignole doesn’t mention the vaccine at all. Rather, he explains that he had been feeling sick in the days leading up to his death. A friend quoted in the report said Brignole had recently traveled to Atlantic City for a competition and returned with a “flu.” A nasal swab used during the autopsy tested positive for COVID-19.

“Sir. Brignole’s underlying medical conditions, including atherosclerosis heart disease, would have made him less able to tolerate the effects of COVID-19, which contributed to his death,” the autopsy report said.

His cause of death was listed as COVID-19 with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (hardening of the arteries) listed as a contributing factor.

Heart disease is known increase the risk of developing severe COVID-19 that could result in death from the first days of the pandemic. We do not know at the time of his death what Brignole’s status was on booster shots; he didn’t appear to post it on social media if he got a booster. but a to study published in the Oxford University Press journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, analyzed the death certificates of 106 people who contracted COVID-19 after being vaccinated and died between January and April 2021 in the US. Heart problems similar to that of Brignole.

So the suggestion that Brignole died from the vaccine, which he lived with for a year and a half, is contradicted by the autopsy report.

Publisher’s note: SciCheck Vaccination/COVID-19 Project made possible by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. the foundation has out of control about the editorial decisions of, and the opinions expressed in our articles do not necessarily reflect the views of the foundation. The goal of the project is to increase exposure to accurate information about COVID-19 and vaccines, while reducing the impact of misinformation.


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Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner Department. Douglas Brignole. Retrieved November 3, 2022.

Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner Department. douglas brignole autopsy report. October 21, 2022.

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