TULSA, Okla. — Doctors are urging pregnant women to protect themselves from COVID-19.
Many are still hesitant to receive the vaccine.
Sarah Hall recently gave birth to her daughter. While she said she'll most likely get the vaccine now, she decided not to while she was pregnant.
“There was just a lot of unknown and I didn’t want to take the risk while I was pregnant," Hall said.
She even asked her doctor what she recommended, but at the time, Hall said her doctor didn’t know much about it.
“She said 'I’m not going to recommend it one way or another,'" Hall said. "If you want to get it, go for it. If not, I think you’ll be okay either way.”
Since then, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, or ACOG, formally recommended all pregnant and breastfeeding women get the vaccine.
Dr. Stacy Noland, an OB/GYN at The Women's Health Group in Tulsa, agrees. She recommends getting the vaccine even before you’re pregnant, especially as she’s seeing a rise in pregnant women getting the virus.
“We’re not seeing complications in pregnancy related to the vaccine, but we definitely are seeing complications of COVID during pregnancy," Dr. Noland said.
Dr. Noland said those virus complications include expectant mothers hospitalized with COVID pneumonia, babies born prematurely and stillbirths they believe were related to COVID. Dr. Noland said she also has patients who are unsure about receiving the vaccine because they’ve heard it can cause infertility issues. She and ACOG say that's not true. ACOG's website says, “Claims linking COVID-19 vaccines to infertility are unfounded and have no scientific evidence supporting them.”
“Historically, no vaccine has ever caused infertility," Dr. Noland said. "Mainly just because they don’t stay in your system for a long time. Your natural antibodies stay in your system. Not the vaccine itself.”
Dr. Noland said breastfeeding mothers can pass antibodies to their babies through their milk.
She also said it's important to get the vaccine because no matter how healthy you are, pregnancy changes everything.
If you’re pregnant or hoping to get pregnant and have questions about the safety of the vaccine, it’s important to talk to your doctor.
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