BNT162b2 mRNA Vaccination Against Coronavirus Disease 2019 is Associated With a Decreased Likelihood of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children Aged 5-18 Years-United States, July 2021 - April 2022

Clin Infect Dis. 2023 Feb 8;76(3):e90-e100. doi: 10.1093/cid/ciac637.


Background: Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), linked to antecedent severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection, is associated with considerable morbidity. Prevention of SARS-CoV-2 infection or coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) by vaccination might also decrease MIS-C likelihood.

Methods: In a multicenter, case-control, public health investigation of children ages 5-18 years hospitalized from 1 July 2021 to 7 April 2022, we compared the odds of being fully vaccinated (2 doses of BNT162b2 vaccine ≥28 days before hospital admission) between MIS-C case-patients and hospital-based controls who tested negative for SARS-CoV-2. These associations were examined by age group, timing of vaccination, and periods of Delta and Omicron variant predominance using multivariable logistic regression.

Results: We compared 304 MIS-C case-patients (280 [92%] unvaccinated) with 502 controls (346 [69%] unvaccinated). MIS-C was associated with decreased likelihood of vaccination (adjusted OR [aOR]: .16; 95% CI: .10-.26), including among children ages 5-11 years (aOR: .22; 95% CI: .10-.52), ages 12-18 years (aOR: .10; 95% CI: .05-.19), and during the Delta (aOR: .06; 95% CI: .02-.15) and Omicron (aOR: .22; 95% CI: .11-.42) variant-predominant periods. This association persisted beyond 120 days after the second dose (aOR: .08; 95% CI: .03-.22) in 12-18-year-olds. Among all MIS-C case-patients, 187 (62%) required intensive care unit admission and 280 (92%) vaccine-eligible case-patients were unvaccinated.

Conclusions: Vaccination with 2 doses of BNT162b2 is associated with reduced likelihood of MIS-C in children ages 5-18 years. Most vaccine-eligible hospitalized patients with MIS-C were unvaccinated.

Keywords: COVID-19; MIS-C; Pfizer (BioNTech); children; vaccine effectiveness.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • BNT162 Vaccine
  • COVID-19* / prevention & control
  • Child
  • Connective Tissue Diseases*
  • Humans
  • RNA, Messenger
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Vaccination


  • BNT162 Vaccine
  • RNA, Messenger

Supplementary concepts

  • pediatric multisystem inflammatory disease, COVID-19 related
  • SARS-CoV-2 variants