My workplace expects its employees to get several immunizations regularly.
But I’m pregnant and scared of what the vaccines might do to my baby. Should
I be concerned? – Emma
It's best to be vaccinated before your pregnancy when possible, but some immunizations
can be given during pregnancy.
are recommended for everyone during flu season, and especially for pregnant women.
The vaccine is safe — studies show no harmful effects to a fetus. It also helps
protect a mother and her baby from getting the flu (and other viruses) in the baby's
first year of life. Pregnant women should only get the shot made with the inactivated
virus. The flu vaccine also comes in a nasal spray (FluMist®), but it contains
live strains of the virus and is not safe for moms-to-be.
The Tdap vaccine (against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis) is now recommended
for all pregnant women in the second half of each pregnancy, regardless of
whether they've gotten it before or when it was last given. This recommendation is
in response to a rise in whooping
cough infections, which can be fatal in newborns who have not yet had their routine
Some vaccines should not be given during pregnancy, such as the
measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR), human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine, and
chickenpox (varicella) vaccine.
Before you get any vaccines during pregnancy, check with your doctor to make sure
they are right for you.