Available data suggest that symptomatic pregnant patients with COVID-19 are at increased risk of more severe illness compared with nonpregnant women. The absolute risk for severe COVID-19 among pregnant women is low; however, data indicates an increased risk of ICU admission, need for mechanical ventilation and ventilatory support, and death reported in pregnant women with symptomatic COVID-19 infection, when compared with symptomatic non-pregnant women. Pregnant patients with comorbidities such as obesity and diabetes may be at an even higher risk of severe illness. The COVID-19 vaccine is now being distributed and administered. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) recommends that patients undergoing fertility treatment and pregnant patients be encouraged to receive vaccination based on eligibility criteria and notes that since the vaccine is not a live virus, there is no data to support delaying pregnancy attempts because of vaccination administration or to defer treatment until the second dose has been administered. The American College of Obstetrics & Gynecology (ACOG) states that while maternal and fetal COVID-19 vaccine safety data are not currently available, there are also no data to indicate that the vaccines should be withheld. Patients may consider the COVID-19 vaccine option in addition to precautions such as face masks, physical distancing, frequent sanitizing, limiting social interactions, limited travel, and handwashing.
Dr. Shahryar Kavoussi was interviewed by KVUE anchor Bryce Newberry regarding COVID-19 vaccines for women who are trying to conceive, pregnant, or lactating.