Expectant mothers are among the groups most affected by the Covid-19 epidemic, which has affected the world. Expectant mothers who have weakened immunity due to pregnancy can pass the coronavirus more severely. For this reason, extra precautions should be taken to protect against Covid-19, especially during pregnancy. Covid vaccines are also among the topics that expectant mothers are most curious about. Experts state that the expectant mother can get Covid vaccines with the recommendations of her doctor. From the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Memorial Kayseri Hospital, Op. Dr. Burak Tanır gave information about the risk of Covid-19 and vaccines during pregnancy.
Increase your precautions in autumn and winter
The increase in Covid-19 cases in our country and in the world draws attention. Obstetricians and gynecologists were asked, “What kind of treatment should be applied? Which medicine should be taken? Which ones should not be drunk? How much is the baby affected by the virus?” such questions arise. Pregnancy is a physiological process in which the immune system is weakened. Due to this weakening of the immune system, especially in the winter months, pregnant women overcome seasonal flu infections more severely than the general population. In other words, even in the period when Covid-19 was not yet known, pregnant women who had the flu, especially in the winter months, were suffering from the disease. For this reason, pregnant women are in the risk group in terms of Covid-19 infection.
Watch out for the Delta variant!
A mother who is infected with Covid-19 during pregnancy feels the symptoms much more severe than a woman who is not pregnant. Along with pregnancy, additional diseases such as asthma, diabetes, high blood pressure and COPD aggravate the picture. In the researches, it has been revealed that the rates of preterm birth, developmental delay, pregnancy poisoning and even maternal death have increased in a pregnant who had a severe Covid-19 infection. It is observed that these rates have increased recently due to the fact that the delta variant, which is responsible for approximately 19% of Covid-90 in our country, is both highly contagious and has a severe disease picture. On the other hand, there is no data in the studies conducted to date that Covid-19 infection in early pregnancy increases the risk of miscarriage.
You can also have the necessary tests done during pregnancy.
Until recently, research has shown that the virus does not pass from the mother to the baby during pregnancy. In order to be able to say that the virus is transmitted to the baby in the mother's womb, it is necessary to conduct research with wider participation. Clinical symptoms of the disease caused by the virus in pregnant women are fever, cough, sore throat, weakness, muscle and joint pain. The PCR test performed with a swab taken from the throat and nose of the suspected patient is decisive in making the diagnosis. Chest radiography and computed tomography are effective in determining the severity of the disease and the type of treatment to be given in patients with Covid-19 infection. The radiation dose emitted by these two imaging methods is below the level that can harm the baby. For this reason, pregnant women do not need to be afraid of chest radiography and tomography taken by protecting the abdominal region with lead plates.
85% of pregnant women survive the disease mildly
85% of pregnant women overcome Covid infection mildly by resting at home and taking immune-boosting vitamin and mineral supplements. During this period, pregnant women who have a routine check-up time should talk to their doctors by phone and give information about the process. Pregnant women with moderate and severe symptoms should be hospitalized and kept under observation and receive oxygen support. According to the gestational week, the heartbeat of the babies should be monitored, and if it is below the 34th gestational week, steroid treatment should be applied to ensure the lung development of the baby.
Should expectant mothers have the Covid vaccine?
The Covid-19 guide, which has been prepared by the Scientific Committee in our country and is currently used, remains up-to-date. Since there are still very few studies on the safety of vaccines in the world, there is not enough data in the section of the guide on pregnant women. However, there are also pregnant women among the 100.000 figures for which mRNA vaccines have been made recently, especially by the USA and Israel. In the preliminary information of the studies, it was concluded that the vaccine did not have any negative effects on the baby in the mother's womb, that it did not pose a risk of miscarriage in the early period or premature birth in the later weeks, and that no pregnancy complications such as growth retardation occurred. It is also expected that the Pregnancy and Lactation Period Guide, which is planned to be prepared by the Ministry of Health in the near future and will be prepared in parallel with these studies, will be updated.
It is safe to administer non-live vaccines to pregnant women.
According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization in the United States, Covid vaccine is recommended for all pregnant women, as pregnant women with Covid -19 infection have a higher risk of entering intensive care. Both Sinovac and Biontech vaccines applied in our country are in the group of non-live vaccines and non-live vaccines are safe to be administered to pregnant women. It is more suitable to be vaccinated after the first 3 months.