Sunday, 9 January 2022 — Swiss Policy Research
Covid Vaccination and Pregnancy (Oregon Health Authority)
According to a preliminary analysis of British data, covid vaccination during pregnancy might be associated with a 33% increased risk of stillbirth.
Please note: No medical advice; readers are asked to consult their doctor.
A preliminary Bayesian age- and trimester-adjusted analysis of British stillbirth data, by an independent data analyst, found that covid vaccination during pregnancy was associated with a 33% increased risk of stillbirth compared to unvaccinated women (min./max. estimate: 11% and 57%).
It should be noted that the absolute risk of stillbirth (after week 20) is rather small (typically about 0.5%) and the British data does not distinguish between first and second vaccination. Furthermore, the data covers the period from January to August 2021, during which only about 25,000 of 355,000 birthing women got vaccinated, and most of them (71%) received the first covid vaccine only in the third trimester of their pregnancy. Finally, Britain mostly used the AstraZeneca DNA vaccine.
Nevertheless, if all of the 355,000 pregnant women had been vaccinated, and if the 33% additional risk estimate is correct and causally related, this would have amounted to about 600 additional stillborn babies in Britain and about 6,000 in the USA and in Europe combined.
Of note, the US CDC found that a “covid diagnosis” may also increase the risk of stillbirth, but not every pregnant woman gets covid, and vaccination does not necessarily prevent covid.
The analysis above does not yet include miscarriages (prior to week 20, affecting about 16% of known pregnancies) or potential neonatal deaths (e.g. the unexplained spike in neonatal deaths in Scotland in September) or potential birth defects (e.g. reports of cardiovascular defects).
A related question concerns the potential long-term cardiovascular impact of covid vaccines, with numerous anecdotal reports describing sudden cardiac arrests, strokes and brain aneurysms in previously healthy children and young adults months after vaccination.
Overall, the net benefit of vaccinating healthy pregnant women, recommended by most health authorities despite a lack of clinical trial data, remains rather questionable. For comparison, the largest pregnancy-related drug scandal, the thalidomide or contergan scandal of the 1960s, is estimated to have caused about 10,000 birth defects, including about 4,000 neonatal deaths.
Analysis: Vaccination and Pregnancy in the UK: Is there reason for concern? (Coddington)