These, Aghajanova says, are very reassuring and “show that these vaccines are not only effective, but they’re also safe for a wide range of people, age, ethnicity, sex, etc.”.Concerns about possible infertility may also have stemmed from the fact that pregnant women were excluded from initial clinical trials for the vaccines, a protocol that has been in place ever since the early 1960s, when it was discovered that a sedative called thalidomide, which was used to treat morning sickness and was undergoing clinical trials, caused severe birth defects.Although pregnant women were not included in the COVID-19 vaccine trials, Aghajanova says, there has been no evidence of loss of fertility in the studies conducted on animals, which were a critical part of the COVID-19 vaccine development process.
Pfizer/BioNTech conducted such studies in animal models to determine whether there were any negative side effects of its COVID-19 vaccine in pregnancy.Moreover, when human trials were approved for COVID-19 vaccines, follow-up data showed that many of the women who participated in them later became pregnant.
During the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine clinical trials, for example, 23 people became pregnant after receiving the vaccine.To capture data on the safety of vaccination outside of clinical trials, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention developed V-safe, a smartphone-based tool that uses text messaging and web surveys to conduct health check-ins on people who have received a COVID-19 vaccine.Pfizer has also now launched its own clinical trial for its vaccine for women over the age of 18 who are between 24 and 34 weeks pregnant in an effort to assure the public that no causal link with infertility exists.Another positive sign, Aghajanova says, is that fertility clinics across the nation have not reported a drop in pregnancy rates or an increase in miscarriages since the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines began.Aghajanova recommends that women who are planning to conceive or are pregnant consider getting vaccinated because of the high risk associated with COVID-19 in pregnancy.According to the CDC, pregnant women who have COVID-19 are more likely to get severely ill from the disease compared with nonpregnant people.Three leading organizations in the country that specialize in pregnancy and fertility — the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists and the Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine — all recommend that pregnant women and women of reproductive age get vaccinated?
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