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Stillbirth Less Likely for Women Receiving Trivalent Flu Vaccine

Largest relative reduction in stillbirths seen for births occurring just after influenza season

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THURSDAY, March 31, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Women receiving trivalent influenza vaccination are less likely to experience a stillbirth, especially for births occurring just after influenza season, according to a study published online March 30 in Clinical Infectious Diseases.

Annette K. Regan, M.P.H., from the University of Western Australia in Crawley, and colleagues examined the incidence of stillbirth following seasonal trivalent influenza vaccination in a cohort of 58,008 births occurring between April 2012 and December 2013.

The researchers found that 8.8 percent of pregnant women received trivalent influenza vaccination and there were 377 stillbirths. Among unvaccinated and vaccinated women, there were 5.0 and 3.0 stillbirths per 100,000 pregnancy-days, respectively. Stillbirth was 51 percent less likely among vaccinated mothers compared with unvaccinated mothers after adjustment for confounders (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.49). Births occurring just after influenza season had the largest relative reduction in stillbirths (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.33).

"Mothers who received seasonal trivalent influenza vaccination during pregnancy were significantly less likely to experience stillbirth compared with unvaccinated mothers," the authors write. "These results support the safety of seasonal influenza immunization during pregnancy and suggest a protective effect."

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