by WorldTribune Staff, June 17, 2022
As an air traffic controller working at one of the FAA’s busiest facilities in the U.S., Hayley Lopez was required under Joe Biden’s executive order to get the Covid vaccine.
Just 15 minutes after getting her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine, the 29-year-old said she developed arm and chest pain.
“Then, I noticed dizziness, shortness of breath, memory issues and stuttering within three days — and that’s when I knew something was really wrong,” Lopez told The Defender in an interview published on June 16.
Lopez not only endured physical pain and suffering, but had to deal with medical professionals so obsessed with following the “vaccines are completely safe” narrative that they refused to acknowledge her symptoms could be a result of the jab.
Other symptoms Lopez said she suffered soon after getting the shot included “twitching, nerve pain, fatigue, high blood pressure, high heart rate, palpitations, lightheadedness, a feeling of vertigo and migraines. I still suffer from all symptoms now, eight months later.”
Lopez was later diagnosed with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS). She said she can no longer work as an air traffic controller because she can’t pass the required medical tests.
Lopez told The Defender that she didn’t want the vaccine, but under Biden’s executive order federal workers were required to get the jab or be fired.
“I want people to know that I was just a normal, healthy 29-year-old trying to navigate life,” Lopez said.
“I worked very hard to get to where I am in my career and at the time, I felt as though my world would end if I lost my job. I got the shot to keep my job and now it may end my career.”
Lopez said she found it almost impossible to find a doctor who wouldn’t dismiss her concerns that her symptoms were vaccine-related.
“I could honestly go on and on about the healthcare system and how terrible you’re treated when you are vaccine-injured,” Lopez said. “I went to a total of 32 appointments with 17 different doctors in seven months.”
The first two doctors she saw in urgent care told her it was a coincidence that the symptoms developed immediately after the vaccine.
“They seemed more concerned with assuring me it wasn’t from the vaccine than treating me,” she said.
Some of the “diagnoses” she received were dismissive — just “stress-related,” doctors told her — while others bordered on sexist.
“My tests kept coming back normal so my doctor assumed it was ‘just anxiety,’ ” Lopez said. “I was even told by specialists that it was because of ‘my cycle’ and that ‘a lot of women have the same complaints.’ ”
Lopez said she finally received a diagnosis after she happened to read about postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome, a condition that affects blood flow and can result in symptoms such as lightheadedness, fainting and increased heartbeat, symptoms which appear when standing up from a reclined position.
“The first time I read about POTS, I cried because it was like reading about myself,” Lopez said. “I discovered POTS on my own. I did not get any information or guidance from a doctor.”
When she finally went to a doctor who specializes in POTS, “He knew right away that I had POTS and understood my struggles with previous doctors, because all his POTS patients go through the same things,” Lopez said.
The latest available data from VAERS show 429 reports of POTS with 310 cases attributed to Pfizer, 99 reports attributed to Moderna and 20 reports to Johnson & Johnson. The reports were submitted between Dec. 14, 2020, and June 3, 2022.
Lopez said her injuries continue to impact “every aspect” of her life.
“On a bad day, I have trouble walking from the couch to my kitchen to get a glass of water,” she said. “On a good day, I can’t walk for more than two minutes, so I can’t go to the store or take my dog for a walk. I’m lucky if I’m able to cook dinner.”
“I wear a wrist monitor for my heart rate and [have] fall detection to alert my husband if I faint.”
In addition to working as an air traffic controller, Lopez was a private pilot and enjoyed flying. She has not been able to engage in that activity either following her vaccination.
“I have not been able to fly — the medical clearances for air traffic controllers and pilots are the same certificate,” she said.
Her vaccine injuries also affected relationships with people who were previously close to her.
“I have lost people close to me because they either don’t want to hear or believe that the vaccine can cause harm, or they just don’t care,” she said.