Life Wellbeing COVID-19 vaccine and pregnancy fears debunked as multiple studies find no link with miscarriage
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COVID-19 vaccine and pregnancy fears debunked as multiple studies find no link with miscarriage

Some pregnant women have been reluctant to get vaccinated because of unfounded worries about miscarriage. Photo: Getty
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Pregnant women who have a COVID-19 vaccine are no more likely to miscarry than unvaccinated pregnant women, according to multiple studies.

A new analysis of vaccination in early pregnancy – from the United States’ Centres for Disease Control (CDC) – found there was no increased risk of miscarriage among nearly 2500 pregnant women who received an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (Pfizer or Moderna) before 20 weeks of pregnancy.

According to the CDC, miscarriage typically occurs in about 11 to 16 per cent of pregnancies.

The study found miscarriage rates after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine were about 13 per cent, which was essentially on par with the expected rate of miscarriage in the general population.

Additionally, data from three safety monitoring systems “did not find any safety concerns for pregnant people who were vaccinated late in pregnancy or for their babies”.

Overall, COVID-19 vaccines are safe in pregnancy

Based on these analyses, and accounting for the known severe risks of COVID-19 during pregnancy, the CDC concluded that the benefits of receiving a COVID-19 vaccine for pregnant people outweigh any known or potential risks.

A US study published this week that looked at more than 100,000 pregnancies confirmed that the rate of miscarriage among vaccinated women is the same as that in unvaccinated women.

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI) and the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG) have recommended that pregnant women can get the Pfizer vaccine at any stage of their pregnancy.

If you are already pregnant and aged 16 or older, you are now eligible to have the Pfizer vaccine.

 Concerns and confusion

This week The Australian reported that doctors are growing concerned about the number of unvaccinated expectant mothers in hospital with COVID-19 symptoms.

A report in Nature found that pregnant women tend to have a worse time with symptoms than other people.

A month ago, the ABC reported that confusion among doctors and health departments was leading to pregnant women being refused a COVID-19 vaccine.

Pregnant women are eligible as a priority group for the vaccine, but some doctors weren’t aware of this.

Some pregnant women remain vaccine hesitant.

The issue of pregnant women not getting vaccinated is a global one.

In July, 10 days after the UK opened up and discarded COVID-19 restrictions, the BBC reported that most pregnant women in England were not vaccinated.

From the University of Washington School of Medicine: A survey of more than 17,000 pregnant and lactating women who received the COVID-19 vaccine showed that they did not experience symptoms any more severe than their non-pregnant counterparts.