Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe for nursing mothers?

breastfeeding
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

The Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine (ABM) does not recommend cessation of breastfeeding for individuals who are vaccinated against COVID-19. In a new statement, the ABM suggests that lactating women discuss the risks and benefits of vaccination with their health care provider, within the context of their risk of contracting COVID-19 and of developing severe disease, according to the peer-reviewed journal Breastfeeding Medicine.

This is a challenging topic because the excluded lactating women. Thus, there are no clinical data regarding the safety of the Pfizer/BioNtech or the Moderna vaccine in nursing mothers. According to the ABM statement, "there is little biological plausibility that the vaccine will cause harm, and antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 [the virus that causes COVID-19] in milk may protect the breastfeeding child."

"Without , the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine relied on biological plausibility and expert opinion to craft a statement on considerations for mRNA COVID-19 vaccines in lactation," says Alison Stuebe, MD, President of ABM. "The available information is reassuring; however, pregnant and lactating people deserve better than plausibility to guide medical decisions. Henceforward, phase 3 should routinely include pregnant and lactating participants. It's time to protect pregnant and breastfeeding individuals through research, not from research."

Arthur I. Eidelman, MD, Editor-in-Chief of Breastfeeding Medicine, states: "The publication of the balanced ABM statement will serve as an immediate guide for clinicians and families in deciding to proceed with COVID-19 vaccination of nursing mothers."


Explore further

Pregnant and lactating women with COVID-19: Scant clinical research

More information: Alison Stuebe, President's Corner: Introduction to ABM's Statement on Considerations for COVID-19 Vaccination in Lactation, Breastfeeding Medicine (2020). DOI: 10.1089/bfm.2020.29171.ams
Citation: Is the COVID-19 vaccine safe for nursing mothers? (2021, January 12) retrieved 22 January 2021 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-01-covid-vaccine-safe-nursing-mothers.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
6 shares

Feedback to editors

User comments