A mass rollout of vaccinations against COVID-19 will see couples delay plans to have babies as priorities change to beating the virus, UAE doctors have told Al Arabiya English.
In the UAE, the government plans to vaccinate more than 50 percent of the population against COVID-19, using the Sinopharm COVID-19 or Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccines.
Dr Ajit Shyam Kanbur, a specialist in obstetrics and gynecology, and department head at NMC Royal Hospital, in Dubai, said: “Post-vaccination, the couples are advised not to conceive up to three months of the second dose, since the side effects on the embryo are not yet known.”
“Those who accidentally do become pregnant, are advised to continue the pregnancy and do detailed tests to rule out abnormalities in the fetus.”
Dr Kanbar revealed that pregnant women affected by the virus in their first trimester don’t have any higher incidence of congenital abnormalities, as compared to the normal population. More studies are required, he added.
“Women who have been affected by the virus in the second trimester have, by and far, delivered normal babies. As of now, it would be advisable that both the partners take the vaccination and plan for a pregnancy, at least three months after the second dose,” Dr Kanbar advised.
The Ministry of Health has excluded pregnant and lactating women, and those planning for pregnancy (in three months) from the vaccination drive, said Dr Mona Mohammad Emam Saad, an obstetrics specialist at the Burjeel Speciality Hospital – Sharjah.