Pregnant women don't generate high antibody levels after first COVID-19 vaccine
The same goes for breastfeeding mothers.
According to a new study, pregnant and breastfeeding women have slower immune responses to the first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine than those who aren't mothers.
For the study, published last week in the journal Science Translational Medicine, the team from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard Medical School looked at 131 women, of whom 84 were pregnant, 31 were breastfeeding and 16 were non-pregnant.
All the women who took part in the study were close in age, mostly in their 30s, and all were fully vaccinated with either the Pfizer-BioNTech or the Moderna vaccine.
After conducting the study, the researchers found that after the first dose, pregnant and breastfeeding women had lower antibody levels than non-pregnant women.
Additionally, the antibodies they did generate were not very powerful in gearing up the immune system to fight off Covid.
However, following the second shot, their levels returned to 'normal' in line with people who were not pregnant or breastfeeding.
The findings, according to the team, show how important it is that pregnant and breastfeeding women receive the second dose on time to lower their risk of serious illness and death from the virus.
The pregnant women in the study were vaccinated at different trimesters and the research team says it hopes to examine in the future if there is an ideal time for vaccination during pregnancy.