Link between Covid vaccination and menstrual changes? It's important to investigate, says an expert

play article
Subscribers can listen to this article
  • An expert calls for an examination of the link between Covid-19 vaccines and menstruation.
  • This would help eradicate vaccine hesitancy in women who want to reproduce.
  • It is also a caveat that menstruation should not be an afterthought in future research.

A reproductive immunology expert recommends that the link between menstruation and Covid-19 vaccines be investigated.

An editorial published in The BMJ notes that menstrual changes have been reported after Covid-19 vaccination. According to the author, there is a plausible link between periods and Covid-19 vaccines.

The possible link

The article states that there have been reports of menstrual changes after both mRNA and adenovirus-vectored Covid-19 vaccines. This suggests that, if there is a connection, it is likely the result of an immune response to vaccination rather than a specific vaccine component.

This immune response is not exclusive to Covid-19 vaccines. The researcher cites a study that found that menstruating women experienced menstrual disruption when infected with the virus.

“Indeed, the menstrual cycle can be affected by immune activation in response to various stimuli, including viral infection,” the author writes.

The article notes that reported changes to the menstrual cycle after vaccination are short-lived.

Importance of menstruation and vaccine research

According to the author, research investigating the link between periods and Covid-19 vaccines may help eradicate vaccine hesitancy, mainly driven by false claims that Covid-19 vaccines can harm women's chances of future pregnancy.

“Failing to thoroughly investigate reports of menstrual changes after vaccination is likely to fuel these fears. If a link between vaccination and menstrual changes is confirmed, this information will allow people to plan for potentially altered cycles,” the author writes.

The article further states that it is important to establish if Covid-19 vaccines can be linked to menstruation – for people who rely on being able to predict their menstrual cycles to either achieve or avoid pregnancy.

A key lesson is, therefore, that the effects of medical interventions on menstruation should not be an afterthought in any future research.

*For more Covid-19 research, science and news, click here. You can also sign up for our Daily Dose newsletter here.

READ | Severe Covid-19 can increase self-attacking antibodies, but vaccination can prevent this - study

READ | Experts broadly positive about digital vaccination certificates

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Have you entered our Health of the Nation survey?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
30% - 9698 votes
70% - 23117 votes