At Embrace Fertility, we know people have many questions about COVID-19 and whether it is safe to have the vaccine if they are undergoing fertility treatment, pregnant or trying to conceive.
Our friends at ANZSREI (Australian and New Zealand Society of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility) have released some information you may find useful to answer some of those burning questions, like:
Should I get a covid-19 vaccine if I am having fertility treatment?
Yes – the vaccine will protect you from COVID-19. COVID-19 vaccines provoke an immune response to proteins associated with the SARS Cov2 virus. They can induce side effects for a few days like injection site soreness, headache, tiredness, muscle ache or a raised temperature. There in no evidence they will affect your fertility or the outcomes of your treatment cycle or your reproductive health. Information on the effect of COVID-19 infection during pregnancy is still incomplete but the current data suggest that women in pregnancy are at higher risk of severe COVID-19 infection and therefore vaccination prior to pregnancy is beneficial.
Should I delay fertility treatment?
No – there is no reason to delay fertility treatment. If you wish to delay treatment until your second dose of the vaccine for COVID-19, a few months delay is unlikely to reduce your chance of pregnancy unless you have a low ovarian reserve or are over 37 years of age.
Can I have the vaccine if I am pregnant?
COVID-19 vaccines do not contain any live virus particles. The mRNA 157 (Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna), and viral vector (AstraZeneca), COVID-19 vaccines are novel in design, and to date, are the first vaccines of this type. Pregnant women were excluded from clinical trials measuring safety.
The effects of the COVID-19 vaccine have not been established for pregnant women but preliminary evidence from overseas vaccinated women is reassuring. As the vaccine is not a live vaccine it is unlikely to cause harm. The decision to have the vaccine in pregnancy depends on the risk of acquiring COVID-19 which is currently low for many women in Australia and New Zealand due to vigilant case control measures and sustained community commitment to reduction of transmission. However if you are at high risk (for example working in hotel quarantine facilities, a front line health care worker and working in aged care facilities) you may make the decision to have the vaccine in pregnancy. You should discuss your individual situation and risk with your doctor.
Should I have the vaccine if I have experienced recurrent miscarriage?
There is currently no evidence of an increased risk of miscarriage following COVID-19 vaccination.
ANZREI has also released advice for men to answer the question of whether they should be vaccinated if they are donors, trying to conceive or going through fertility treatment:
There are a number of reports that male fertility may be influenced by infection with COVID-19. There is no data on the effect of vaccination against COVID-19 and therefore vaccination is recommended.
Can I be an egg or sperm donor if I have the vaccine?
Yes – there are no risks to you, there is no virus in the vaccine so there are no risks of transmission to the recipient of the sperm or eggs.
This information is approved by ANZSREI Executive and is provided for general guidance only. It is not a substitute for professional advice from your medical practitioner.