Despite reports that the flu vaccine is safe and recommended for pregnant women, there has still been some question in the medical and patient community. The CDC recently completed a study reinforcing the fact that the flu vaccine is safe for pregnant women and helps protect mom and baby from the complications associated with contracting the flu during pregnancy.
Between the years of 1990 and 2009, only 175 reports have been received with complications associated with getting the flu vaccination during pregnancy. When taking that number into account compared to the total number of women who received the flu vaccination during that time, the CDC estimates complications occur in 12.5 women for every one million vaccinations given.
There are non-serious side effects that can occur with the flu vaccination in women who are pregnant, but these side effects are the same across the entire human population. Common side effects include irritation of the skin where the flu vaccination was injected and fatigue. Fever was also reported in some cases.
Researchers from the CDC noted that 27 of the total 175 women reporting complications from the flu vaccination during pregnancy were noted between the years of 2003 and 2009 and were associated with the nasal form of the flu vaccination. These women were not supposed to receive the nasal vaccination. The CDC continues to recommend flu vaccinations for all pregnant women.
Source: Pedro L Moro MD, MPH; Karen Broder MD, Yenlik Zheteyeva MD, MPH; Kimp Walton MS, Patricia Rohan MD, Andrea Sutherland MD, MPH, MSc; Alice Guh MD, MPH; Penina Haber MPH, Frank DeStefano MD, MPH; Claudia Vellozzi MD, MPH. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. 21 October, 2010.