Vaccine Does Not Increase Pregnancy Risks
According to the study , there is no increased risk of miscarriage in pregnant patients who receive either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines. This is especially good news given the recent surge in cases across the country fueled by the highly contagious delta variant of the COVID-19 virus.
We knew the vaccines were effective, says Dr. Goje. Now, this study reinforces that safety.
The study looked at nearly 2,500 women who received one of the two mRNA COVID-19 vaccines before they got pregnant or before 20 weeks of pregnancy. The cases were pulled from the CDCs v-safe COVID-19 Vaccine Pregnancy Registry, a separate program of its v-safe app where pregnant recipients of the vaccine can sign up to allow the CDC to track reactions in pregnant patients in the long term.
The results led the CDC to further bolster their recommendation that pregnant patients get vaccinated. In a statement, the organization said, COVID-19 vaccination is recommended for all people aged 12 years and older, including people who are pregnant, breastfeeding, trying to get pregnant now, or might become pregnant in the future.
The news is particularly encouraging when taken in the context of a previous study that showed a strong immune response to the vaccine in pregnant patients.
Is It Safe To Take Over
Dr. Walker:We dontrecommend Tylenol or Advil or any of those types of medications before you go get the vaccine. Its OK if you have some symptoms you want to help get some relief from. Go ahead, take that medication afterwards, but we dont recommend just routinely taking the medicine to try to prevent the symptoms. There havent been any really good studies to show whether that affects the effectiveness of vaccine, so we just recommend only using medication if you need them, not just to try to prevent symptoms.
If I Dont Get Vaccinated What Are The Risks Of Contracting Covid
During pregnancy, the body undergoes a lot of changes, some of which can affect the strength of the immune system. While the overall risk of experiencing a severe course of COVID-19 is low, if youre pregnant you have an increased risk of getting severely ill if you contract COVID-19. That means you have an increased risk of hospitalization, ICU admission, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation treatment and death.
Recent data has indicated that individuals who experience severe COVID-19 symptoms have a higher risk of complications during and after pregnancy. Compared to asymptomatic COVID-19 patients, those with severe symptoms were at higher risk for cesarean delivery, preterm birth, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy, and postpartum hemorrhage. A recent study indicated that pregnant people who contract COVID-19 are 20 times more likely to die than those who do not contract the virus. For some people, pregnancy isnt their only health risk factor they might be overweight or obese, have underlying high blood pressure or diabetes, or be part of a minority group that had more severe outcomes.
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Can I Get The Vaccine If Im Pregnant And Have Allergies
Dr. Leis: For the most part, people with allergies can receive the vaccine. There are two exceptions:
- People who have had an allergic reaction to polyethylene glycol, or PEG. PEG is a component in the vaccine that can elicit an allergy response. It is a very rare allergy, but it is important that people who have this allergy do not receive the vaccine.
- Anyone who has had a reaction to the first dose of the vaccine should not receive the second dose.
What Do We Know About Covid
The Comirnaty and Spikevax vaccines have been shown to be safe in pregnant women, based on accumulated real-world evidence from other countries. Studies show that the side effects following vaccination were very similar in pregnant women when compared to non-pregnant women. No safety concerns have been identified for women who received these vaccines during pregnancy.
RANZCOG says: Yes, mRNA vaccines such as the Pfizer vaccine have been shown to be safe in pregnant women, based on accumulated real-world evidence from other countries. Pregnant women are a priority group for COVID-19 vaccination and should be routinely offered Pfizer or Moderna vaccine at any stage of pregnancy. You can find more information here
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Why Is It Important To Consider The Vaccine If You’re Pregnant
On 16 December 2021, it was announced that pregnant women were being placed in priority group 6 for the Covid vaccination by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation .
While more than half of pregnant women who test positive for Covid-19 have no symptoms, some pregnant women can get life-threatening illness from Covid-19. This is especially the case if they already have underlying health conditions.
Youre at increased risk of becoming very unwell with Covid-19 in the later stages of pregnancy, and 1 in 10 pregnant women admitted to hospital with symptoms of Covid-19 need intensive care.
Whats more, if youre pregnant and get Covid-19, its twice as likely your baby will be born early. Youre also more likely to develop pre-eclampsia, and more likely to need an emergency caesarean. Your risk of stillbirth is also twice as high, although this number still remains low 00565-2/fulltext” rel=”nofollow”> ).
From 1st February to 30th September 2021, 98% of pregnant women admitted to hospital with symptoms of Covid-19 were unvaccinated. Of the 235 pregnant women admitted to intensive care, only 3 had received a single dose of vaccine, and none had received both doses .
This Royal College of Midwives leaflet has clear information on the Covid-19 vaccination during pregnancy.
You can also watch our video with an expert panel from the Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists, the NHS and Public Health England.
Vaccine Data Is Looking Good
We’re learning more as Americans are getting vaccinated across the country, but the information that’s out there made me feel comfortable enough to keep my appointment. These are the two big ones that reassured me:
- Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases , says there have been “no red flags” when it comes to the 20,000 pregnant women who had already received the COVID-19 vaccine as of mid-February.
- Research is showing that the antibodies you produce to protect against COVID-19 could be passed from mother to fetus in the womb or even passed through your breast milk to your newborn. A baby in Florida was actually just born with COVID antibodies after its mother received the vaccine during pregnancy.
Pfizer-BioNTech, the drugmaker whose vaccine was first approved for rollout in the U.S., is also starting clinical trials on pregnant people, so we should know even more in the coming months.
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Vaccination Is Your Decision
Its completely understandable to worry about vaccine safety when youre pregnant. There is also a lot of misinformation about vaccination in pregnancy.
COVID-19 vaccines are strongly recommended in pregnancy and is the best way to protect you against the known risks of COVID-19 in pregnancy for you and baby.
However, whether to have the vaccination in pregnancy is ultimately your decision.
Which Vaccines Are Authorized
- The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine is authorized for ages 5 and older.
- Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccines are authorized for ages 18 and older through emergency use authorization from the FDA.
All three vaccines help the immune system block the virus that causes COVID-19. This can be done in different ways:
- Two-dose Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine: this vaccine uses mRNA.
- Two-dose Moderna vaccine: this vaccine uses mRNA.
- One-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine: this vaccine uses a harmless, modified form of the common cold virus in humans called an adenovirus.
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Are Vaccines Normally Used In Pregnancy
Yes. Pregnant people and people who are breastfeeding are already routinely and safely offered vaccines in pregnancy. For example, to protect against influenza and whooping cough. Many of these vaccines also protect their babies from infection. These vaccines, like the COVID-19 vaccines, are non-live vaccines, which are generally considered safe in pregnancy. Find out more about vaccinations in pregnancy.
If You Have Symptoms Or Have Tested Positive For Covid
If you have or think you have COVID-19, you must isolate yourself at home. You can still hold your baby skin-to-skin and stay in the same room as them, especially when bonding and breastfeeding.
You should take precautions to avoid spreading the virus to your baby.
- When awake, wear a medical mask when you’re in the same room as your baby.
- If unavailable, properly wear a well-constructed and well-fitting non-medical mask.
Learn more about:
When feeding your baby:
- put a clean towel on your nursing pillow each time you use it
- clean any breast pump equipment carefully before and after each use by:
- washing the pump and containers after every use with dishwashing liquid and warm water
- rinsing with hot water for 10 to 15 seconds
You may be too ill to breastfeed or provide routine baby care. If so, ask a healthy adult to feed and care for your baby. Ideally, the baby’s caregiver would be someone who is part of your immediate household. As there may be COVID-19 in the home, the baby’s caregiver should:
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Possible Complications Of Covid
Pregnant women are considered a vulnerable group for severe illness and complications from COVID-19 infection, which is why they are a priority group for COVID-19 vaccination.
Women who contract COVID-19 whilst pregnant have a higher risk of certain complications compared to non-pregnant women of the same age who contract COVID-19, including:
- An increased risk of needing admission to hospital.
- An increased risk of needing admission to an intensive care unit.
- An increased risk of needing invasive ventilation .
COVID-19 during pregnancy also increases the risk of complications for the newborn, including:
- A slightly increased risk of being born prematurely .
- An increased risk of needing admission to a hospital newborn care unit.
Some pregnant women are more likely to have severe illness from COVID-19 compared to pregnant women without these conditions. The conditions are:
- Being overweight or obese
- Having pre-existing high blood pressure
- Having pre-existing diabetes
A multinational study of 2,130 pregnant women in 18 countries found there was a consistent association between having COVID-19 while pregnant and higher rates of adverse outcomes such as maternal death, preeclampsia and pre-term birth compared with pregnant women without COVID-19.
Pregnant women with COVID-19 have a higher risk of certain complications compared to non-pregnant women with COVID-19 of the same age, including:
Staying Healthy During And After Your Pregnancy
Keep all of your healthcare appointments during and after pregnancy. Visit with your healthcare provider for all recommended appointments. If youre concerned about going to your appointments in person because of COVID-19, ask your healthcare professional what steps they are taking to protect patients from COVID-19, or ask about telemedicine options. If you need help finding a healthcare professional, contact your nearest hospital, clinic, community health center,external icon or health department.
- Talk to your healthcare professional about how to stay healthy and take care of yourself and the baby.
- Ask any questions you have about the best place to deliver your baby. Delivering a baby is always safest under the care of trained healthcare professionals.
- You should also talk to your healthcare professional if you think you are experiencing depression during or after pregnancy.
- Get recommended vaccines during pregnancy. These vaccines can help protect you and your baby.
- Get a flu vaccine every year. Others living in your household should also get vaccinated to protect themselves and you.
- Get the Tdap vaccine to protect your baby against whooping cough, which can have similar symptoms to COVID-19. CDC recommends all pregnant people receive a Tdap vaccine during each pregnancy. In addition, everyone who is around the baby should be up to date with their whooping cough vaccine.
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Encouragment For Getting Vaccinated
The second big reason these results are so important is theres more encouragement for pregnant patients to get vaccinated and help protect themselves, their child and others.
Traditionally, pregnant patients have not been enrolled in clinical trials, including with the COVID-19 vaccines, Dr. Goje says. So theres uncertainty for pregnant patients and its hard for some of them to make an informed decision about whether or not to receive the vaccine without having that data.
The transparency in the data, especially this new research, though, is encouraging, she says. Pregnant patients who declined earlier opportunities to receive the vaccine could become more comfortable, she adds. And it has to do with three things: transparency about the vaccine, the continuous availability of data from research and registries and educating patients about the vaccine.
Any fears that the vaccine contains any part of a live virus are unfounded. The Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are mRNA vaccines, meaning they carry material that helps your body reproduce the spike protein found on the COVID-19 virus. That harmless protein is what triggers your bodys immune response. The vaccine does not cause an increased risk of infertility, miscarriage, stillbirth or birth defects.
The new study is extremely important at a time when we are seeing a surge of infections with the delta variant. Its time to reinforce that vaccines save lives, she adds.
Pregnant And Recently Pregnant People
At Increased Risk for Severe Illness from COVID-19
- Although the overall risks are low, people who are pregnant or recently pregnant are at an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 when compared to people who are not pregnant. People who have COVID-19 during pregnancy are also at increased risk for preterm birth and stillbirth and might be at increased risk for other pregnancy complications.
- Having certain underlying medical conditions, and other factors, including age, can further increase the risk for developing severe COVID-19 illness during or recently after pregnancy .
- People who are pregnant or recently pregnant and those who live with or visit them need to take steps to protect themselves from getting sick with COVID-19.
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Do I Need To Delay Getting Pregnant Or Fertility Treatments If Im Planning On Getting Vaccinated
Current recommendations say there is no reason to delay conception. If you become pregnant after receiving your first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, you should not delay getting the second booster dose as scheduled. The only possible risk physicians are currently aware of with the vaccine is the possibility of a fever following the second dose, a side effect experienced by around 10-15% of vaccine recipients. In animal studies, high fevers in early pregnancy have been associated with a slight increase in risk of birth defects and pregnancy loss. If this is a concern, the current recommendation is that you take a pregnancy-safe fever reducer such as Tylenol if you experience a fever after getting vaccinated.
If you are undergoing fertility treatments, the current recommendation is to continue the treatments and to get vaccinated. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine recommends vaccination in people planning to conceive spontaneously or with assisted reproductive technology, like IVF . A recent study showed no difference in IVF success outcomes in people who had been vaccinated against or previously infected with COVID-19. Speak with your physician and/or fertility specialists to make the decision that is best for you.
Pregnancy And Other Vaccines
Recommended vaccines have been safely and routinely given to millions of pregnant women over many years.
Some vaccines are recommended for use during pregnancy and some are not, and your healthcare provider is the best source of information about what is best for you and your baby before, during and after pregnancy.
The flu and whooping cough vaccines are routinely recommended during pregnancy because the vaccines have been shown to be safe and effective in protecting mother and baby from harmful outcomes from these two potentially life-threatening diseases. They have both safely been used by millions of pregnant women over many years.
The CDC reports that there is a large body of scientific studies that supports the safety of flu vaccine in pregnant people and their babies, and CDC continues to gather data on this topic.
The flu vaccine has been given safely to millions of pregnant women worldwide over many years. Influenza vaccinations have not been shown to cause harm to pregnant women or their babies. Multiple studies confirm normal growth and health in babies with no excess in birth defects, cancers or developmental problems including learning, hearing, speech and vision.
The whooping cough vaccine has been used routinely in pregnant women in the United Kingdom and the United States since 2012 and careful monitoring of this practice indicates that the vaccine is safe for pregnant women and their unborn babies.
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What Are The Covid
The bulk of the vaccines are water. Besides their active ingredients , they also contain lipids , salts, sugars, and acetic acid or amino acids . Multi-dose vaccines such as the AstraZeneca vaccine, where the vial may be used for multiple doses, contain preservatives to prevent bacterial contamination.
Two of the vaccines in use in Queensland have mRNA as their active ingredientPfizer and Moderna . mRNA is messenger RNA, which forms a part of your cells normal functioning and gives your cells instructions on how to make most of the proteins your body requires. This particular mRNA gives your cells instructions to make a small piece of the spike protein that is found on the surface of the virus that causes COVID-19. Your immune system recognises that this bit of protein does not belong and begins to produce antibodies against it, and therefore against the virus itself.
For much more detailed information on exactly what everything in each COVID-19 vaccine is, see our blog: Whats really in a COVID-19 vaccine?