Lab evidence show COVID-19 antibodies in breast milk of vaccinated women — expert
MANILA, Philippines — There is early evidence that the breast milk of lactating mothers who were administered COVID-19 vaccines contain antibodies against the respiratory illness, a health expert said Thursday.
Dr. Mianne Silvestre of the Health Professionals Alliance Against COVID-19 – Kalusugan ng Mag-ina and Asia Pacific Center for Evidence-Based Healthcare said a study in the United States found the presence of antibodies in the breastmilk of six lactating mothers who had received the COVID-19 vaccine.
“So very early evidence, hindi pa po napapublish but when they studied the breast milk, ‘yung gatas ng ina ng anim na nagpapasusong ina na nakareceive ng vaccines in that country, they were able to detect in the breastmilk of the vaccinated women, antibodies against COVID-19,” she said in an online media forum.
(So there is early evidence, although it has not yet been published, when they studied the breastmilk, they found that the breast milk of the six women who received the vaccines in that country contained antibodies against COVID-19.)
“So we’re saying this is laboratory evidence,” she added.
However, Silvestre noted that it has not yet been identified if the level of antibodies present in the breast milk of vaccinated women is enough to protect infants against the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes the disease.
“This is very preliminary. This is very early evidence that there could be a large potential benefit of a vaccinated person who breastfeeds passing on antibodies against COVID-19 virus to their own infant,” she added.
According to Silvestre, breastfeeding women can be inoculated with any type of COVID-19 vaccine, since the vaccines currently available do not contain live viruses.
She noted that despite limited data, the World Health Organization states that if a breastfeeding woman is part of a group recommended for vaccination, then vaccines can then be offered to her.
Breastfeeding women are also not recommended to discontinue breastfeeding before or after vaccination, she added.
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