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COVID-19 Vaccines in First Trimester of Pregnancy Appear Safe

(Reuters) – COVID-19 vaccination during the first trimester of pregnancy does not increase the risk for congenital defects in the fetus, preliminary data suggest.

Researchers at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago studied 1,149 women who received at least one dose of a vaccine from Moderna, Pfizer/BioNTech or Johnson & Johnson during the teratogenic window, i.e., between 30 days before conception and 14 weeks into gestation.

Compared to 2,007 pregnant women who either remained unvaccinated or were vaccinated later, women vaccinated shortly during that window were not at higher risk for having an abnormality in the fetus detected on ultrasound exam, according to a report in JAMA Pediatrics.

The authors acknowledge that examining a fetus with ultrasonography is not as reliable as examining an infant, and because many of the women they studied are still pregnant, real proof of vaccination safety in the first trimester requires larger studies of newborns.

SOURCE: JAMA Pediatrics, online April 4, 2022.

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