Yellow fever vaccination and pregnancy: a four-year prospective study

Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 1993 May-Jun;87(3):337-9. doi: 10.1016/0035-9203(93)90156-k.


During an outbreak of yellow fever (YF) in Nigeria in 1986-1987, women at various stages of pregnancy were vaccinated against YF, either because those pregnancies were not known at the time or because they requested vaccination out of fear of acquiring the disease. This offered an opportunity to assess the safety and efficacy of YF vaccine in pregnant women and the effect of this vaccine on their newborn children. Pre-vaccination and post-vaccination serum samples from the vaccinated pregnant women were tested by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and by neutralization tests for antibody to YF virus. The results showed that the antibody responses of these pregnant women were much lower than those of YF-vaccinated, non-pregnant women in a comparable control group. Follow-up of these women and their newborn children for 3-4 years showed no abnormal effect that could be attributed to the YF vaccine, which suggests that vaccination of pregnant women, particularly during a YF epidemic, may not be contraindicated.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Viral / analysis
  • Disease Outbreaks
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin M / analysis
  • Middle Aged
  • Nigeria / epidemiology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / prevention & control*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Viral Vaccines / adverse effects
  • Viral Vaccines / therapeutic use*
  • Yellow Fever / epidemiology
  • Yellow Fever / immunology
  • Yellow Fever / prevention & control*
  • Yellow fever virus / immunology


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Immunoglobulin M
  • Viral Vaccines