Don’t get Vaccinated if You are Pregnant.

Oct• 28•2011

That is my advice.  I realize I am currently in the minority of physicians who would prescribe this advice, however, I will say it again, do not get vaccinated if you are pregnant.  Such a stance, even a few years ago used to be more widespread, obvious and even commonsensical.  One does not start any new drugs while pregnant unless seriously ill, and most certainly would not want to initiate a massive immune response at the same time one is carrying an antigenically distinct baby.

There is also a data driven reason for offering this advice.   If we turn now to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), the authoritative federal government data repository on this topic administered by the Centers for Disease Control, there are some interesting patterns.

A computer scientist at the blog MedAlerts, has collated and graphed the data for us. The chart below shows the total number of spontaneous abortions/stillbirths reported to VAERS per a variety of vaccines.  It is clear from the graph that both the H1N1 vaccine and the Gardasil vaccine have a far greater risk for this outcome than other vaccines.  What the graph does not capture is that this is raw data of all adverse events for the time the vaccine has been on the market going back to the start of the database.  So as is pointed out by Dr. Rubin at MedAlerts, while the H1N1 vaccine shows a bit less than 3 times as many reports of abortion/stillbirth as the seasonal flu vaccine, the H1N1 vaccine has only been on the market for a year versus 21 years worth of data collection for the regular seasonal flu vaccine.  This implies that the H1N1 vaccine is some 60 times more likely to cause a miscarriage than the still relatively unsafe seasonal flu vaccine.

The vaccine with the greatest number of total reported abortions/stillbirths is Gardasil, which has only been on the market for four years.  I would speculate whether Gardasil, targeted strongly towards prepubescent girls, and likely not near as widely received as the flu vaccine may even be more dangerous than the H1N1 vaccine.  It should also be pointed out that the most common vaccines a pregnant woman would be at risk of being exposed to would be the influenza vaccines and the Gardasil vaccine.

This publicly available VAERS data is the official adverse reporting system of the federal government for vaccine adverse events.  It likely only captures a fraction of the true adverse events as 1) reporting is voluntary while VAERS is not well publicized and 2) some physicians are loath to implicate a vaccine despite the clear temporal association.  A previous study has found that this surveillance system may capture a tenth or less of actual adverse events.   Regardless, both the H1N1 vaccine and Gardasil are orders of magnitude more likely to cause miscarriage than most other vaccines.  It is inconceivable that these vaccines have not been pulled from the market and available stocks recalled immediately.  It is criminal in light of the governments own data, that it continues this recent trend of loudly propagandizing for pregnant women to be vaccinated.  As this is their data, and they do not act on it, if one is in good health it seems a losing bet to trust the government or mainstream medicine with sticking a needle in your arm.

As has been discussed on this blog previously, there is no worthwhile efficacy data for either, H1N1 or Gardasil for that matter.  There is no rigorous scientific reason to believe they work and for this reason they should never have been marketed.  That they are still marketed to pregnant women in light of this reported adverse event data is sickening and astonishing.  If you are concerned about the flu take a vitamin D3 supplement.  Unlike the H1N1 vaccine, there is data that this intervention decreases the incidence of flu.  If anything a dose of 2000 IU per day would likely provide ancillary benefits as well to Mother and Baby.  What it won’t do is drastically increase the risk of spontaneous abortion/stillbirth.

In 2009 ran an article titled “Some Pregnant Women Fearful of H1N1 Vaccine”  Over less than six weeks the article generated 440 comments with dozens of direct patient reports of miscarriage from the H1N1 vaccine.  In 2010 on behalf of the National Coalition of Organized women, Eileen Dannemann, Paul G. King, PhD, and Gary S. Goldman, PhD wrote up a more in-depth analysis of the VAERS dataset entitled, “A Comparison: Probable 2009-A-H1N1-Flu-shot-related Fetal Losses and Maternal Deaths in Pregnant Women Attributed to Unverified H1N1-infection-related Complications”  In future perhaps I can do a post looking solely at this article for the moment I will close with a brief exerpt of the conclusions of these experts who looked into the matter in detail.

“Simplistically, not vaccinating appears to have been about 85 /*editorial note that is 85 not 1.85 as I first read it*/ (95% C.I. = 65-111) times safer for the fetus and may have been as much as 192 (95% C.I. = 148 –250) times safer for the fetus than vaccinating the pregnant mother with an inactivated 2009-A-H1N1 flu shot.

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  1. D. says:

    There is no such word as irregardless. Otherwise a very informative and timely article. We just lost a grandchild two weeks ago (DIL was about five months along) and DH and I highly suspect she received a flu shot from her mother, who is a nurse and pushes vaccinations as though they were truly something to behold. She also gave a flu shot to our granddaughter who is three, and our grandson who is just 14 months. I COULD NOT believe my son would let her do this! He knows better but apparently either wasn’t consulted or his opinion didn’t matter. After all, they’re his kids too but I think he gets little say in any matters, especially medical and religious (the same sometimes).

    • admin says:

      I am truly sorry to hear about the loss of your grandchild, it must be a very difficult time for your family. Your grandchild has gone to a much better place though that I would guess doesn’t make it much easier for parents and grandparents. Kids face so many health risks these days, it is awful.

      While we don’t know why it was your grandchild’s time to go, I am one physician who agrees with your caution about vaccines, and in this post tried to focus on one aspect of what I find concerning to hopefully get people to begin to think about the issue a bit. I hope you and your family will have time to heal from this in the weeks ahead, with better days to come.

      Irregardless not a word you say? Why I say that’s just frumious nonsense. -Thx I corrected it.

  2. ADH says:

    Interesting. I was going to get the flu vaccine when I was pregnant with my son through work, but I was unable to get a doctor’s note at the time. My son has Down syndrome, and I suspect it was probably a good thing that I did not get the shot. He may have been more prone to adverse effects. Thankfully he is in good health and high functioning.

    Although I am for vaccines, I still wonder about the safety of the schedule, particularly for my son. Here a suggested vaccine study I wrote about:

  3. pregnancy says:


    [...]Don’t get Vaccinated if You are Pregnant. « Skeptic's Health Journal Club[...]…

  4. RickL-RN says:

    I take some issue with this. First, basing your argument on VARES when VAERS is a voluntary reporting system. It was established by a CDC/FDA collaboration to detect adverse reactions to vaccines, medications, and other products. This system cannot determine cause and effect, but it may supply signals that prompt analysis of databanks and other resources to get better scientific data. To know the total extent of this surveillance system on vaccine safety, see

    Secondly, the high rates for influenza and HPV versus other vaccine could be account for since vaccines are given to mainly women (currently) in the case of HPV and properly pushed for pregnant women in the instance of influenza.

    Lastly, overall rates without context provide little scope. The overall rate is typically denominated by the overall numbers of vaccines given in the best case this rate would be number of abortions/ 1 million vaccines given to pregnant women. Thankfully we do have some data like this:

    Spontaneous abortion (/1 million pregnancies)
    after 1 day =397
    after 1 week= 2780
    after 1 month 16,684
    Note: Based on UK data — 12% of pregnancies
    *all events that might be expected as background rate events*

    The first trimester poses no significant increase from baseline in the risk of influenza-related complications, and routine administration of any vaccine during this time may prompt anecdotal association with naturally occurring spontaneous miscarriage. Adverse effects from influenza vaccination are uncommon.

    • admin says:

      Hi Rick,

      Thanks for the well thought out comment. A couple quick book keeping notes, your first link doesn’t go anywhere for some reason, the medscape links are behind a log in, and may not be accessible to some readers.

      Yes VAERS is a voluntary adverse event reporting system. Being voluntary I suspect it greatly under-reports vaccine adverse events. One might take the opposite postion, however, my experience is that most physicians are very hesitant to report a vaccine adverse event, while, as I think I mentioned in the article, there have been studies where more intense surveilance was performed that found VAERS under reported events by an order of magnitude.

      Yes it is more difficult to determine cause and effect from a retrospective database, however, as these reports were submitted as adverse events associated with vaccination it is a quite reasonable concern, while caution dictates a review of the intervention, “first do no harm.”

      It may be a source of bias that women are disproportionately affected by flu and HPV, however, I’ve never seen any data to indicate that. Has that been your clinical experience?

      I agree that we need studies with a clear denominator. While I appreciate the sometimes good writing posted on Medscape, the more authoritative information, sparse and sometimes biased as it may be, is, I would say, in the federal government’s database of adverse events and the index medicus of peer-reiewed studies.

      While I didn’t bring it out in this essay, I would also just say it is impossible to say the issue isn’t “politicized” when legislation has been passed indemifying vaccine manufacturers from harm.


  5. RickL-RN says:

    The link did work for me. Here it is again

    I don’t believe it requires a great leap in logic to think that there would be a high number of reported abortions after HPV was given that would be on most provider’s radar. Also with media and blog attention given to influenza that same could be very well true. However, correlation doesn’t prove causation.

    From Dr. Mark Crisp (MD- Infectious Disease) at SBM (
    The data available suggests that not only is the vaccine safe in pregnancy but maternal vaccination protects the child against influenza. There is no data to suggest that the flu vaccine increases the risk of miscarriage and some reports suggest that influenza is associated with premature delivery ( The effect of influenza infections on pregnancy outcomes has had little evaluation. There was an interesting epidemiological study this month (10/12) in J Infect Dis on the 1919 pandemic that suggested that about 1 in 10 pregnant women had a first trimester miscarriage from influenza (

    Lastly, vaccine manufactures can be sued if there is willful negligence

    • admin says:


      You again didn’t provide the link.
      I am glad that you agree that it is not a great leap in logic to find a large number of spontaneous abortions (as federal records document) after the flu and HPV vaccines. You are wrong that this is an issue of diagnostic or surveillance bias as discussed in the previous response.

      Your link concerning vaccine liability oddly documents my point, “The declaration provides legal liability protections for individuals or entities that are involved in the distribution and administration of H1N1 vaccine”. The page says it was outdated so checking the newer link it says the same, unless you have a nurse who sticks the needle in someone’s ear or some such.

      I disagree with some of Dr Crisp’s article, he does go out of the way to say he was in an “interferon fog” as he wrote it. He does acknowledge that the flu vaccine has been documented in the Lancet as even less effective than previously held.

      Going back to purported 1919 data is weak. Talk about retrospective and “correlation is not causation.” However, even if I gave you (which as I said this is history not double blind placebo controlled studies) that the cited article has determined a valid causation, what makes you suppose that giving inactivated or attenuated flu to pregnant women wouldn’t lead to the same problem. Actually you may have just determined the pathophysiology of the astonishingly dramatic increase in spontaneous abortions (documented by the federal government) seen in pregnant women from the flu vaccine.

  6. RPh says:

    There’s only one reason to put together a graph like this – and that is to scare people that lack the understanding to see just how bogus it is to even compare this self-reported data for these vaccines against each other, let alone draw any conclusions from it. Clearly the author of this website has an anti-vaccine agenda and is willing to mislead people to convince them of his point of view.

    • admin says:

      Don’t understand your belligerence or your comment. If the adverse event is self-reported, though some are physician initiated, how does this invalidate the findings? All patient complaints of illness are self-reported, it is how we doctors make a living. Are patients no longer allowed to mention when they are ill? Secondly, what do you have against graphing data? Yes, as noted in the write-up, the graph is of the simple raw data of all reported adverse events classed by vaccine type. As noted by the scientist who put this graph together, if one estimated a denominator to establish rates of adverse events, H1N1 which has only 1 year of data collection (while Gardasil has only been on the market four years and with VAERS being online for 21 years) would be expected to have a ball park rate of spontaneous abortions some 60 times higher than the regular seasonal flu vaccine. This is not brought out by looking only at the raw data. If anything the graph of raw data dramatically downplays the true threat faced from this vaccine. Yes, I am opposed to dangerous vaccines. I could care less about your agenda or your aspersions regarding my motivations.