Maternal and Child Outcomes Reported by Breastfeeding Women Following Messenger RNA COVID-19 Vaccination

Breastfeed Med. 2021 Sep;16(9):697-701. doi: 10.1089/bfm.2021.0169. Epub 2021 Aug 31.


Background: In December 2020, two novel messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration; however, the early trials excluded lactating women. Methods: Breastfeeding women residing in the United States who received either of the two mRNA vaccines were enrolled into the Mommy's Milk Human Milk Research Biorepository at the University of California, San Diego. From December 14, 2020 to February 1, 2021, 180 women who received two doses of either mRNA vaccine were recruited into the study. Results: Similar proportions of women reported any one or more symptoms following vaccination with either mRNA vaccine. In addition, the frequency by specific type of symptom did not differ by brand. However, following the second dose of vaccine, women who received the Moderna brand were significantly more likely to report symptoms. A small proportion of women following the first dose of either vaccine brand reported a reduction in milk supply, and significantly, more women reported a reduction in milk supply following the second dose of Moderna. Few infant events were reported for either vaccine brand following either dose, and no serious adverse events were reported. Conclusions: These data are reassuring regarding the safety of vaccination in breastfeeding women and their breastfed children with either of the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines.

Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; breastfeeding; human milk; lactation; mRNA vaccine; vaccination.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Breast Feeding
  • COVID-19 Vaccines*
  • COVID-19*
  • Child
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Milk, Human
  • RNA, Messenger
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • United States
  • Vaccination


  • COVID-19 Vaccines
  • RNA, Messenger