H1N1 Vaccine for Pregnant Women

I’m 22 weeks pregnancy and considering what is the best option in terms of the h1n1 vaccine. In general I never get a seasonal flu shot and don’t get it for my 23 month old daughter either. This year I am considering getting the H1N1 vaccine due to my pregnancy, but I am still hesitant about the injectable version since they don’t approve it for children 0-6 months of age. It doesn’t seem to make sense that its okay for me to get it and in turn my fetus gets it, when my fetus is younger than that 0-6 months of age category?!?! Does the entire contents of the shot cross the placenta? I know the nasal mist is not recommended for pregnant women, but it seems like a more “natural” way for my body to build immunity… by inhaling something rather than having it injected into me. I plan to talk with my midwife about this but was curious about your thoughts.

I’m not a fan of any flu shots during pregnancy.  There just isn’t any safety testing.  Despite the hype over the dangers of the H1N1 flu for pregnant women, it’s important to keep the disease in perspective.  There have been about 35 fatalities in pregnant women – that’s out of the about 5 million pregnant women in our country this year.  That’s a relatively small number.  We also see fatalities from the regular flu each year in pregnant women (I don’t actually know the number).  So, if you haven’t typically gotten a flu shot for yourself each year, and during earlier pregnancies, I don’t see that the H1N1 risk should spur you into getting that shot now.

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