4 News Now Q&A: Do COVID-19 vaccines cause infertility?

Your Questions Answered

Q: Do COVID-19 vaccines cause infertility?

A: It’s a myth creating a storm of confusion and fear among women: COVID-19 vaccines cause infertility. Many of you have seen this on social media, and you’re worried; is there any truth to this claim?

Many women around the nation are asking the same question. A report from the Kaiser Foundation found women are more likely than men to turn down the shot, and they are especially worried about long-term side effects. About 13 percent said they believed or were unsure whether the vaccines have been shown to cause infertility.

4 News Now turned to ABC News Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Jennifer Ashton for some clarity. She said there is really no basis for this myth at all.

“Even though there is no data at this point, vaccines have a very safe track record in pregnancy,” Dr. Ashton said. “We know that pregnant women are at higher risk of COVID-19 and based on what we know right now, there does not seem to be any significant impact on fertility. Long-term side effects are incredibly unlikely. This is not getting into the nucleus and changing DNA. And there are some published studies that suggest that pregnant women are likely to transfer antibodies to protect their fetus. Certainly we’ve seen that in women who have been naturally infected and the hope is we’ll see that in vaccinated women as well.”

Dr. Ashton, and many other experts, say the question of whether an expecting mother should receive a COVID-19 vaccine will eventually come down to several different factors. They include everything from the trimester, risk factors for COVID-19, ability to remain socially distanced in her lifestyle and workplace, guidance from federal and state officials and recommendations from the woman’s own physicians.

RELATED: If I’m pregnant and positive for COVID-19, will I pass it on to my newborn?

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