Locations:
Search IconSearch

Is It Safe To Get the COVID-19 Booster Shot If You’re Pregnant?

An expert lays out why people who are pregnant should get vaccinated, as well as get their boosters

pregnant woman with COVID booster shot

With the COVID-19 pandemic showing no signs of slowing down after two years, the focus has turned to vaccines and vaccine boosters for eligible people, including people who are pregnant.

Advertisement

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy

While we know that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe for people who are pregnant, what about booster shots?

According to Ob/Gyn Oluwatosin Goje, MD, the COVID-19 vaccine boosters are absolutely safe for people who are pregnant. Dr. Goje detailed further details about what people who are pregnant should know about getting their booster shot.

Is it safe to mix and match your booster dose if you’re pregnant?

In the fall of 2021, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) that allows adults to receive any available COVID-19 vaccine as their booster shot regardless of which vaccine (Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson) they received for their initial vaccination.

This extends to people who are pregnant, too, says Dr. Goje. “On December 17, 2021, the CDC advised that either of the mRNA vaccines — Pfizer or Moderna — were preferable for a booster shot, especially with the Omicron variant,” she says.

If neither of those vaccines is available, though, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is still safe to receive as a booster.

“Vaccines wane over time so by receiving the booster, you’re improving immunity for both yourself and the fetus,” says Dr. Goje. “You’re doing yourself and your child a favor by getting the booster.”

Even if you’re not pregnant, Dr. Goje says you should still get the booster if you plan on trying to conceive in the future.

Are people who are pregnant more likely to feel side effects from the booster?

People who are pregnant are no more likely to feel side effects than others, says Dr. Goje. “Most people experience side effects with their booster that’s similar to side effects they had with their original vaccination,” she notes. “It’s mostly been body aches fatigue, some soreness, some fever and headaches.”

Just as with the side effects from the vaccinations, there aren’t any risks to either people who are pregnant or their children from the side effects of the booster shot. Just be sure to stay properly hydrated.

Dr. Goje also says that taking acetaminophen (Tylenol®) is safe to take for the aches and pains from any side effects. “We don’t recommend ibuprofen in pregnancy but acetaminophen and, if necessary, antinausea medicine is safe,” she says

Advertisement

Have any organizations or associations endorsed getting a booster if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding?

Both the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) have recommended people who are pregnant or breastfeeding should get a booster shot.

Data from recent studies indicate that people who are pregnant or breastfeeding who received the vaccine passed it on to their babies via the placenta and breast milk. While there’s more research to be done, these results underscore more potential benefits for getting vaccinated and receiving a booster shot.

If you have any questions, Dr. Goje adds, reach out to your healthcare provider.

The bottom line: Get vaccinated, get boosted

Just as with vaccinations, boosters are essential in protecting both people who are pregnant and their fetus, says Dr. Goje. “A majority of pregnant patients who are currently hospitalized are unvaccinated,” she says. “Vaccines work and save lives.”

Advertisement

Learn more about our editorial process.

Related Articles

Smiling pregnant person speaking with healthcare provider in medical office
June 14, 2024/Heart Health
Why Your Heart Needs Special Attention When You’re Pregnant

Obesity, age and preexisting heart conditions can all raise your risk of cardiovascular disease during pregnancy

Pregnant person talking with caregiver in medical office
Will Perineal Massage Keep You From Tearing During Childbirth?

Science is mixed, but if you want to try stretching your perineum, here’s how to do it safely

Female sitting on couch looking at a pregnancy test stick, holding cell phone
This May Surprise You — But You Can Get Pregnant on Your Period

While it’s probably not your most fertile time, it is possible to get pregnant if you have unprotected sex during your period

Support people helping pregnant person giving birth
Baby Go-Time: Advice for Dads and Other Support People

Plan ahead, pack that bag, be attentive and be an advocate

Male and pregnant female looking out window pensively
Couvade Syndrome: When Partners Develop Pregnancy Symptoms

Sympathetic pregnancy is real and can cause nausea, vomiting, weight gain, fatigue and other symptoms

Pregnant woman sitting on couch at home holding her stomach and back, wincing in discomfort
April 25, 2024/Pregnancy & Childbirth
10 Signs Labor May Be Beginning

Everyone’s unique, and there’s no exact checklist of symptoms, but you may feel contractions, cramps and pelvic pressure

Pregnant person sitting on exam table speaking with healthcare provider
Vaccinations During Pregnancy: What You Need and What To Avoid

Staying up-to-date on vaccines encourages a healthy pregnancy, but not all vaccines are recommended when you’re pregnant

Pregnant woman, with different options to induce labor floating around her
Is There Any Guaranteed Way To Induce Labor?

Science says only one way actually works, but there are a few others that are still safe to try

Trending Topics

Female and friend jogging outside
How To Increase Your Metabolism for Weight Loss

Focus on your body’s metabolic set point by eating healthy foods, making exercise a part of your routine and reducing stress

stovetop with stainless steel cookware and glassware
5 Ways Forever Chemicals (PFAS) May Affect Your Health

PFAS chemicals may make life easier — but they aren’t always so easy on the human body

jar of rice water and brush, with rice scattered around table
Could Rice Water Be the Secret To Healthier Hair?

While there’s little risk in trying this hair care treatment, there isn’t much science to back up the claims

Ad