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Myth busted: Covid-19 vaccine won’t affect men’s fertility

Saman Haziq/Dubai
Filed on January 22, 2021
Reuters

UAE doctors have put his fears to rest, saying: Men looking to have children in the next few months can safely take the vaccine.

Looking to start a family by February, Fujairah resident NV was sceptical about taking the Covid-19 vaccine after his wife had been advised against receiving it. He was worried it might affect his fertility.

UAE doctors have put his fears to rest, saying: Men looking to have children in the next few months can safely take the vaccine. In fact, it is the Covid-19 virus that could “adversely affect sperm quality and not the vaccine”, they said.

Dr Amala Nazareth, a specialist in obstetrics and gynaecology at Prime Medical Center Jumeirah branch, explained: “Researchers have found that the virus itself, and not the vaccine, can affect the sperm quality which could contribute to infertility issues. So, it is all the more reason for men to get vaccinated and protected. For males, there are no contraindications. At the moment, it is completely safe for men to take the vaccine.

“Antibodies detected in the semen will not hamper fertility procedures. They can take it even if their wives are planning to get pregnant.”

Dr Anselma Shantha Elizabeth Ferrao, consultant for obstetrics and medical director at NMC Royal Women’s Hospital, Abu Dhabi, added that by getting vaccinated, husbands of women who were looking to have a baby could stay safe from Covid and reduce the risk of their wife’s exposure to the virus.

Women planning to get pregnant soon, however, are being asked not to take the jab as a precautionary measure, until further studies are available.

Dr Mona Mohammad Emam Saad, an ob-gyn specialist at Burjeel Speciality Hospital Sharjah, that although there remains ‘limited data’ about the vaccine’s effects on couples planning to conceive, it has been found to be safe for most.

“The vaccine seems to be safe for most part of the population, including husbands of those who plan to conceive soon. Data regarding safety of vaccine for couple who planned to conceive is limited, but until now, there have been no cases of side effects or problems for this special group.”

She explained: “The Covid-19 vaccine available in the UAE is a killed or an inactivated vaccine. The vaccine is highly efficient and had been developed from the three most infectious strains of SARS-CoV-2.

“Any haemodynamically stable person above 18 can get a jab from any medical facilities across the UAE. However, the Ministry of Health and Prevention has excluded pregnant and lactating women and those planning for pregnancy (in three months) from the vaccination drive.”

The decisin, she said, has been taken as there is no data on how the vaccine behaves in pregnant women. “Even during the clinical trial process, pregnant women were being excluded. Hence, the exclusion of pregnant and lactating women from the vaccination drive has been taken to avoid any risk as a precautionary step.”

saman@khaleejtimes.com





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