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Doctors urge women not to believe myths about COVID-19 vaccines and fertility, pregnancy

Ochsner Health doctors point to data showing the vaccines are safe for pregnant women
Published: Jul. 30, 2021 at 7:10 PM EDT
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Doctors say pregnant women should get vaccinated.
Doctors say pregnant women should get vaccinated.(unsplash.com)

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Doctors in the Ochsner Health System urge women not to believe myths about the COVID-19 vaccines harming fertility and pregnancy.

Dr. Jane Martin, a Maternal Fetal Medicine Fellow at Ochsner, said the highly contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus is not sparing pregnant women.

“With the Delta variant, we are seeing healthy young women who are pregnant who are getting very sick in the ICU, and we have a lot more infections now; We have a ton of women in the hospital who are pregnant with COVID, they are almost all unvaccinated,” said Martin.

She urges women not to buy into misinformation circulating online and in conversations.

“The theories or the myths that were first circulating on Facebook and on social media have been disproven and so people need to hear it loud that the COVID vaccine does not increase your risk of infertility, it does not increase your risk of miscarriage or any bad pregnancy outcomes and your OB-GYN doctors and your high-risk doctors are begging you to please go get the vaccine in the masses in pregnant women right now,” Martin stated.

Martin says she took one of the two-dose coronavirus vaccines when she was pregnant months ago.

“I made the decision to get the COVID vaccine when I was 34 weeks and 37 weeks pregnant. I had my first dose in December and then my second dose in January and then I delivered about a week after my second dose. At the time that I received the vaccine I was taking care of many sick pregnant women with COVID, and the decision was pretty easy for me,” said Martin.

Martin and two other Ochsner Health doctors pointed to a New England Journal Medicine study and from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Society of Reproductive Medicine.

Dr. Katherine Baumgarten is Medical Director of Infection Control and Prevention at Ochsner Health.

“That data continues to increase, and we need to dispel these myths and misinformation that’s in a lot of different contexts,” said Baumgarten.

Martin said when expectant mothers are vaccinated, the child they are carrying benefits.

“We have now had some studies published that show that there are protective antibodies passed to babies through the placenta and through breast milk,” said Martin.

And the doctors say because children under 12 are not yet eligible to be vaccinated it is important that adults around them be vaccinated.

“And so, as adults, it’s imperative that we protect our children by getting the vaccines ourselves,” said Baumgarten.

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