What You Should Know About The COVID-19 Vaccine And Your Menstrual Cycle

There have been a number of side effects reported in relationship to the COVID-19 vaccine, with some of them being confirmed side effects studied under clinical trials. Others have been proven to be myths, and still others have not been studied enough. Whether the vaccine impacts a woman's menstrual cycle is one of the possible effects that has not been studied in-depth, despite the rumors circulating around the potential vaccine impact.

While there are no peer-reviewed, formal studies on changes to a woman's cycle after receiving any of the COVID-19 vaccines, there are women who have reported some spotting and bleeding post-vaccination, according to the Associated Press.

GoodRX noted that some women on social media have been discussing changes in their periods after their shots, but cautioned that these reports have not been verified. Some of the changes women have seen are heavier and more painful periods, as well as early periods. Of course, periods change all the time and there might be no link to the vaccine whatsoever.

This is what scientists have to say about COVID-19 vaccines and periods

Vaccines are designed to cause changes in your immune system so your body is able to fight pathogens. Obstetrician and gynecologist Dr. Jen Gunter told the Associated Press that the uterine lining that is shed when you menstruate contains immune cells, so it's possible vaccines can have a temporary impact on your cycle. However, just because there is a possible link — yet very little studied about it — doesn't mean you shouldn't get the COVID-19 vaccine.

"The benefits of taking the vaccine certainly way outweigh putting up with one heavy period, if indeed they're related," Dr. Mary Jane Minkin of the Yale University School of Medicine told the AP.

Although all the evidence about the COVID-19 vaccines and periods are purely anecdotal, the University of Illinois Health Institute began a survey asking women about their vaccine and menstrual experiences. The AP also noted that there is, as of publication, no link between the COVID-19 vaccine and fertility, so if your reproduction and uterine health is impacting your decision to get the vaccine, don't sweat it.