COVID-19 vaccines don't affect the outcomes of in-vitro fertilization (IVF), according to a new study. It's more evidence that the shots won't harm fertility, researchers said.
The results "will give people comfort to know that the COVID-19 vaccine does not affect their reproductive potential," said senior study author Dr. Alan Copperman, director of reproductive endocrinology and infertility for the Mount Sinai Health System in New York City.
For the study, he and his colleagues compared rates of fertilization, pregnancy and early miscarriage in IVF patients who were unvaccinated or had received two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna COVID vaccines.
It included women who had eggs removed from their ovaries and fertilized in a lab to create embryos that were frozen, later thawed and transferred to the womb. It also included women who received medical treatment to stimulate egg development.
Among the women who had frozen-thawed embryo transfer, rates of pregnancy and early pregnancy loss were similar for the 214 patients who were vaccinated and the 733 who weren't.
Among women who had ovarian stimulation, rates of eggs retrieved, fertilization, embryos with normal numbers of chromosomes and other measures were similar in the 222 who were vaccinated and the 983 who weren't, according to the findings, reported Jan. 25 in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology.
"This is one of the largest studies to review fertility and IVF cycle outcomes in patients who received COVID-19 vaccinations," study first author Dr. Devora Aharon, a fellow in reproductive endocrinology and infertility at Mount Sinai, said in a journal news release. "The study found no significant differences in response to ovarian stimulation, egg quality, embryo development, or pregnancy outcomes between the vaccinated compared to unvaccinated patients."
The findings should be reassuring to those who are trying to conceive or are in early pregnancy, Aharon added.
She and Copperman are also affiliated with Reproductive Medicine Associates of New York.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on COVID-19 vaccines for people who want to have a baby.
SOURCE: Obstetrics & Gynecology, news release, Jan. 25, 2022