OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — Due to the spread of online misinformation, some people are worried that the COVID-19 vaccine somehow causes infertility or changes reproductive health.
To get to the bottom of these questions, 3 News Now reporter Ruta Ulcinaite hosted a virtual panel with three of the area's leading reproductive and infectious disease experts to find out what's true and what's not.
On social media false narratives surrounding the COVID vaccine are plaguing people's feeds.
"The random Tik Tok video that your friend sends you or Twitter posts or Facebook posts, those are not credible information sources," Director of UNMC's Global Center for Health Security Dr. James Lawler said.
Credible sources include the three panelists that joined Ruta Ulcinaite to help dispel some misinformation including Dr. Lawler, Methodist Women's maternal-fetal medicine specialist Dr. Emily Patel and Methodist Women's reproductive endocrinologist Dr. Abigail Delaney.
WATCH THE FULL PANEL:
“There’s actually no data on the vaccine causing irregular menstruation. There’s none out there," Delaney said. "There are many, plethora that can cause irregular menstrual cycles and just because temporally someone had a vaccine a month ago doesn't necessarily mean it was because of the vaccine."
The experts also say there's no data and no evidence that show's the vaccine causes infertility. In fact, the actual COVID infection is what may cause infertility, not the vaccine.
“There does seem to be an effect on male fertility, not the vaccine, but the actual diagnosis of COVID," Delaney said.
The experts say with 158 million Americans now vaccinated, it's easy to correlate the vaccine to all other health issues.
“When you vaccinated essentially half of the American population, people are going to coincidentally have all sorts of things happen to them in close proximity to when they got vaccinated," Lawler said.
Doctors are recommending the vaccine to all eligible populations, including pregnant women because the data we do have on the vaccines show high effectiveness in preventing serious illness, complications with COVID-19 and death.
“We know that the outcome of COVID illness is far worse than any side effect from a vaccine," Patel said.
Here is a list of additional sources for more information:
The Centers for Disease Control
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine
American Society for Reproductive Medicine