Does Pregnancy Affect Vaccine Safety?


As flu season is upon us, many wonder whether it is safe for pregnant women to receive vaccines. Many vaccinations already have side effects and complications and those who are pregnant worry that the vaccine can somehow impact their pregnancy. There is no one standard answer for these questions because there are different types of vaccinations. However, the general answer is that pregnant women can receive vaccinations that contain inactivated viruses but should avoid vaccines that are made with live virus.

In terms of vaccine safety, pregnancy does not necessarily make a woman more vulnerable to vaccine side effects. Pregnant women can be more susceptible to contracting the underlying virus itself which, in some cases, can impact the pregnancy. In these cases, pregnant women should not be as concerned about the possible side effects so they remain vulnerable to any complications and could have a possible legal claim if they were injured. All of the vaccines that pregnant women are encouraged to receive when they are pregnant are covered by the Vaccine Injury Compensation Fund. This is a fund that is delegated specifically for compensating those who are injured by vaccines. Anyone is eligible to receive compensation for their injuries if it is determined by the court after going through the legal process.

In general, women should plan ahead when they know that they are trying to conceive. If they are able to receive vaccines before conception, it eliminates the possibility that they will experience complications when they are pregnant. For example, women should plan on getting an MMR vaccine at least one month before they conceive. Women will generally need protection from these diseases, but receiving the vaccine while pregnant could cause side effects that could harm the pregnancy. At the same time, if women get rubella while pregnant, it could cause a miscarriage or birth defects.

One of the best ways to plan ahead is to locate your vaccine records and figure out which vaccines you have already had and which ones that you need. Talk to your healthcare professionals to figure out which ones that you will need to take before pregnancy and which vaccinations can wait until after pregnancy.
If you are already pregnant, there are some vaccines that are recommended by healthcare providers. If you do not have these vaccines and become ill, it can cause complications for the pregnancy and possible damage to the unborn child.

Pregnant women can get the flu shot. During their pregnancy, women are more at risk of contracting the flu because their immune system is compromised. Thus, many healthcare providers encourage them to get the flu vaccination when they are pregnant in order to protect their safety and that of the unborn child. However, the flu shot is not without risk. Pregnant women will face the same complications that everyone else who gets vaccinated for the flu may experience. This includes injuries to their shoulder from errors in vaccination and possible allergic reactions. Still, physicians advocate that women receive the flu shot while pregnant because they believe that the possible risk to the pregnancy from the flu outweighs the risk of side effects. In addition, healthcare providers will generally recommend that pregnant women receive the whooping cough vaccine during their pregnancy, Some physicians also recommend that pregnant women receive the Hepatitis A and B vaccines.

The flu shot is considered no more dangerous than usual for pregnant women. The flu vaccine contains inactivated virus so it would not harm the fetus. Of course, the less common side effects of the vaccine are a possibility, but they should not affect the pregnancy. Developing the flu while pregnant could have a negative effect on the pregnancy. It is up to the mother to with the pros and cons of receiving the flu vaccine during pregnancy.

The key to receiving a vaccine during pregnancy is that the vaccine is an inactivated one. Live vaccines that contain even weakened versions of viruses can pose a risk to pregnant women. In addition to the MMR shot, the other vaccines to avoid during pregnancy, for this reason, include chickenpox and shingles. However, even inactivated vaccines should be viewed with general caution if they contain novel adjuvants. These are a boost to the vaccine to produce more antibodies without using as much of the actual virus. If they do, you should consult with your physician and consider these vaccines on a case-by-case basis.

The short answer is that pregnancy has no special effect on vaccine safety but there are risks to not receiving some vaccines while pregnant. Still, most vaccines come with potential side effects so it remains a complicated question.

If you or a loved one has experienced a vaccine injury please contact the Law Offices of Sadaka Associates today. They handle many of these cases and can provide legal guidance to you.


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The first step in helping yourself or a loved one after a serious vaccine related injury is to contact us for a free review of your case.

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