UMMC health experts: Getting COVID-19 vaccine will not affect fertility

Coronavirus

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – According to health leaders at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC), getting the COVID-19 vaccine will not affect someone’s fertility or make them sterile. They said getting the vaccine has not shown to be dangerous or harmful to a pregnant woman or her unborn baby, or to a mother and her breast-fed baby.

UMMC leaders said getting the vaccine will outweigh any possible adverse events of the virus, because it will help both pregnant and non-pregnant women to avoid severe COVID-19 disease.

“An advisory from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), updated on July 2, gives key information and recommendations to women, including those who are pregnant,” said Dr. J. Martin Tucker, professor and chair of UMMC’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Some of the key points the ACOG emphasizes for pregnant, recently pregnant and non-pregnant women include:

  • Pregnant women should have access to the vaccine and to education about its effectiveness and its safety for pregnant women and their unborn babies.
  • Claims linking COVID-19 vaccines to infertility are unfounded and have no scientific evidence supporting them.
  • Claims linking the vaccine to contracting COVID-19 “are unfounded and have no scientific evidence supporting them,” ACOG says. The College strongly recommends everyone receive COVID vaccination, including those planning future pregnancy
  • Data shows that people who have received any of the three U.S. approved COVID-19 vaccines have not had any increased complications with pregnancy compared to before the pandemic began.
  • For patients who decline the vaccine, “providers should reinforce the importance of other prevention measures, such as handwashing, distancing and wearing a mask.”
  • Expected side effects “should be explained as part of counseling patients, including that they are a normal part of the body’s reaction to the vaccine and developing antibodies to protect against COVID-19 illness.”

“ACOG strongly recommends that all eligible persons receive a COVID-19 vaccine or vaccine series, depending on the product,” the advisory stated. “Obstetrician-gynecologists and other women’s health care practitioners should lead by example by being vaccinated and encouraging eligible patients to be vaccinated as well.”

According to studies, the Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines carry no increased risk for miscarriage, premature births and other complications. Additional studies have shown that transfer of maternal antibodies across the placenta and into breast milk confer passive immunity against SARS-CoV-2 in newborns after maternal vaccination.

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