Debunking myths and quashing rumours, experts including medical practitioners are trying to assuage concerns that covid 19 vaccines are affecting menstrual cycles and fertility after some people shared their experiences of heavier, painful or delayed periods after taking the jab.
“So far, there’s no data linking the vaccines to changes in menstruation,” Alice Lu-Culligan and Dr Randi Hutter Epstein at Yale School of Medicine wrote in the New York Times. “Even if there is a connection, one unusual period is no cause for alarm,” reported guardian.com.
Closer home, Twitter has been abuzz with doctors and medical practitioners stating that there is no need to worry as vaccinations open for all above the age of 18 years from May 1, 2021.
Notably, two researchers who received their shots in the UK earlier this year noticed that aside from the usual side-effects — pain at the injection site — they also had temporary changes in their menstrual cycle, reported dailymailco.uk.
Dr Kathryn Clancy, an associate professor at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and Dr Katherine Lee, a post-doctoral scholar in the public health sciences division at the Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis are now all set to run a study to determine if there is any link between abnormal periods and the COVID-19 vaccine after they shared their experiences on Twitter and received responses with similar experiences.
This was being shared in what’s app groups today😂😂 pic.twitter.com/b96DpuGDmd
— Sudha😷 (@ewwwcovid) April 24, 2021
Taking stock of WhatsApp forwards that women and girls should not go for the jab while on or nearing their periods as their immunity is low around that time, gynaecologist Dr Munjaal V Kapadia said, “Some silly WhatsApp rumour has spooked everyone. Your period has no effect on the vaccine efficacy. Take it as soon as you can. Spread the word, please,” he said.
A lot of patients messaging me asking if it’s safe/ effective to take the vaccine during their period. Some silly WhatsApp rumour has spooked everyone.
Your period has no effect on the vaccine efficacy.
Take it as soon as you can.
Spread the word, please.
— Dr. Munjaal V. Kapadia (@ScissorTongue) April 24, 2021
Another medical staff also wrote about receiving both the shots while on her period.
“I got both my doses when I had my periods. I got covid later on because I work in a hospital but recovered without side effects within a week all thanks the vaccine. Please get vaccinated. There will be very mild side-effects but it will save your life,” she mentioned.
I got both my doses when I had my periods. I got covid later on because I work in a hospital but recovered without side effects within a week all thanks to he vaccine. PLEASE GET VACCINATED, there will be very mild side effects BUT IT WILL SAVE YOUR LIFE. https://t.co/XqZCM0Ob0k
— Wear your mask (@vakeel_saheba) April 24, 2021
Another doctor, a fertility expert, also said that there is no truth to the rumours.
So, should you be taking the vaccine on or near your period date?
Dr Vaishali Joshi, obstetrician and gynaecologist at Kokilaben Ambani Hospital, Mumbai told indianexpress.com that “Covid vaccination does not have any effect on menstruation”. “There has been no data to validate the claim that Covid-19 vaccine affects the periods and its flow. This has originated from social media where people are sharing their own personal experiences. All international advisory bodies and organisations have not acknowledged it. Also, it’s important to note that one doesn’t need to reschedule vaccination date depending on the presence of periods,” she said.
“So all women above 18 years of age irrespective of their periods, hormonal status, should get vaccinated, apart from pregnant women as currently it’s not recommended in India,” she added.