How could the COVID-19 vaccine affect the cycle?
WClinical trials are beginning to test different COVID-19 vaccines, one question that participants were not asked was whether they experienced any changes to their menstrual cycle or flow. unexpected blood after vaccination or not.
However, as soon as the vaccine was released to the public, people started talking to their doctors about what they were going through. Many people find that their periods become heavier than usual. At first, some doctors dismissed it, writing the authors of a new survey on the topic published in the journal Scientific advance. In the media coverage, medical practitioners and public health experts hastened to say that there is “no biological mechanism” or “no data” available, the authors write. support the relationship between vaccine use and menstrual changes. “In other cases, experts state that these changes are more likely the result of ‘stress’. But these kinds of changes are not unheard of: vaccines against typhoid, hepatitis B, and HPV are sometimes linked to irregular periods.
To better understand what was going on, the researchers launched a survey in April 2021. More than 39,000 people responded: 91% of them identified only as women and 9% in gender diversity. Among those with regular periods, 41% of respondents reported heavier bleeding after the vaccination, while 44% said they did not notice any change. Of those who did not have regular periods, 71% of people used long-acting reversible birth control pills, 39% of people used sex-affirming hormones, and 66% of people were post-menopausal.
Older adults, and those who classified themselves in the survey as non-Caucasian or Hispanic/Latino, were more likely to report worsening condition after vaccination, as did those with a fever or Fatigue as a side effect of COVID-19 vaccination and those who have had endometriosis, menorrhagia or fibroids.
It is too early for the researchers to draw any conclusions about the significance of the results; Research is based on self-reported experience, which presents challenges. For example, people who experience menstrual changes may be more likely to respond to a survey. Researchers still can’t say that the vaccine caused these changes — and if it did, exactly how or why. But one theory is that it has to do with how the immune system responds to vaccines. As the study notes: “In general, changes to menstrual blood are not uncommon or dangerous, but heeding these experiences is important to building trust in medicine.”
Co-author Katharine Lee, professor of anthropology at Tulane University, said: “We suspect that for most people the changes associated with COVID-19 vaccinations are short-term, and we recommend encourage anyone with concerns to contact their doctor for further care” in a Press Release. “We would like to reiterate that vaccination is one of the best ways to prevent severe illness with COVID, and we know that contracting COVID itself can not only lead to changes in the stages but also lead to hospitalization, prolonged COVID, and death.”
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