WILL THE COVID-19 VACCINE AFFECT MY FERTILITY?

June 25, 2021
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Dr. Lisa Becht from HRC Fertility joined us recently to discuss the COVID-19 vaccine, and the potential implications for fertility treatments.

New England Journal of Medicine published study on more than 35,000 pregnant people who have been vaccinated.

The COVID-19 Vaccine and Fertility

Throughout 2020 and into early 2021, the complications of planning fertility treatments were compounded by the evolving guidance on all medical practice protocols for hygiene and occupancy regarding in-person appointments during COVID-19 quarantine. We all learned real-time what it is like to be a scientist, facing conflicting information and adjusting for public-safety guidance as more data became available – confirming some theories and rejecting others. This was true of the coronavirus as well as the vaccine.

Our interview with Dr. Lisa Becht from HRC Fertility in April 2021 helped to clarify the most up to date recommendations regarding COVID-19 vaccinations for individuals and couples seeking fertility treatments at that time. Those guidelines are updated with the most current information at the Centers for Disease Control. Read the most up to date CDC COVID-19 pregnancy recommendations.

Subsequently, the New England Medical Journal released a study on June 17, 2021 that reinforces the findings that helped to shape these guidelines.

While research continues, it is important for anyone pursuing fertility treatments to understand the need for vaccination, and the potential impact of a COVID-19 infection on a pregnancy for either biological parent.

Is It Safe to Get Vaccinated for COVID-19 Before Pursuing Treatment?

Dr. Becht: “Absolutely. When the vaccine was approved back in December 2020 there was some misinformation about how the mRNA vaccines could affect proteins in the placenta. A few weeks after into the initial launch of the vaccines, an editorial in the Journal of Infertility and Sterility, the medical journal for fertility, debunked that myth, and more recently the American Society of Reproductive Medicine and the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology have definitively recommended vaccinations for all women. While it is a newer vaccine, there is no current data to suggest that there is an impact on fertility or during pregnancy. At this point we are following the recommendations of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine.

“The recommendation now is to get vaccinated before going into treatment, ideally. COVID-19 is still an unknown, and the new strands are concerning. If you were to get severe case of COVID, as a female, that would impact your ovulation/cycle. You could have different hormones for a few months after. It would also affect your pregnancy. Same thing from the male perspective. We would recommend vaccination for everyone given current data.”

At this point we are following the recommendations of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine.

How Long Can Eggs Stay Frozen?

“The great news is that because they are vitrified, they are going to be the same now as a year or years from now. Technically we say indefinitely. Children have been born from eggs vitrified years ago. Right now, if you are not comfortable, you can wait, get tested, and at the point you are comfortable, move into a cycle.

FOLLOW THE RESEARCH

JUNE 17, 2021 – A study of more than 35,000 pregnant people who had mRNA COVID-19 vaccinations published in the New England Journal of Medicine found there is no evidence of impact on the pregnancy, nor is there evidence of the vaccine causing harm to either parent or baby.

“…pregnant persons with Covid-19 are at increased risk for severe illness (e.g., resulting in admission to an intensive care unit, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, or mechanical ventilation) and death, as compared with nonpregnant persons of reproductive age.5 Furthermore, pregnant persons with Covid-19 might be at increased risk for adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as preterm birth, as compared with pregnant persons without Covid-19.6 The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and ACIP, in collaboration with the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Academy of Pediatrics, have issued guidance indicating that Covid-19 vaccines should not be withheld from pregnant persons.

Beginning in 2020, Fairfax EggBank now screens all of their egg donors for COVID-19 as part of the overall medical screening process, and prior to donors completing an egg retrieval cycle.

JUNE 18, 2021 – COVID-19 has been associated with decreases in sperm quality and volume. However, early concerns about the impact of the vaccine on male fertility also continue to be reviewed. A study published in the Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) Sperm Parameters Before and After COVID-19 mRNA Vaccination, has shown that receiving the vaccine shows no significant decreases in any sperm parameter.

Fairfax EggBank follows all recommended guidelines regarding COVID-19 screening and vaccinations.

READY TO FIND YOUR PERFECT DONOR?

Talk to A Fairfax EggBank Client Relations Specialist today to discover how using frozen donor eggs can help you in your path to parenthood. You can start looking for your perfect donor match today on our Egg Donor Database.


Lisa Becht, MD, FACOG

Dr. Lisa Becht is a double board certified fertility specialist at HRC Fertility in Southern California. She is known for her personalized care and dedication to patients. She has expertise in all areas of infertility, fertility preservation, and fertility testing.

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