Protecting Mom and Baby

Photo by WJFW Newswatch 12

Story By Georgina Fernandez

Local News Published 09/15/2021 3:27PM, Last Updated 09/15/2021 10:15PM

Northwoods – Health care officials recognize that people are worried that the COVID-19 vaccine could result in premature births and birth defects. Dr. Michael Beninati, a critical care and maternal-fetal medicine specialist at UW Health, said some mothers have come into his office concerned about a variety of rumored side effects from the vaccine.

“Increased risk of preterm labor and preterm birth, increased risk of stillbirth, increased risk of neonatal death, babies being admitted in the neonatal intensive care unit,” Beninati said.

However, studies show the opposite.

“Pregnant patients who get COVID are at an increased risk of severe disease for both mom and baby,” Beninati said.


Data from the CDC tracking apps shows that of the over 5,000 expecting moms who have been vaccinated, no birth defects have been linked to the vaccine. Health care officials are now pushing the vaccine rollout further. Getting vaccinated now can significantly help protect both mom and baby, as well as give the newborn a few extra tools to combat the virus.

“Moms who are vaccinated and are breastfeeding can pass on a certain degree of antibody protection through their breastmilk of antibodies called IGA that may be protective for newborn against the COVID-19 virus,” Beninati said.

UW Health says further research regarding antibody transmission is still needed.

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