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Hum Vaccin Immunother. 2018 Mar 4;14(3):758-766. doi: 10.1080/21645515.2017.1345385. Epub 2017 Oct 18.

Influenza vaccination during pregnancy for prevention of influenza confirmed illness in the infants: A systematic review and meta-analysis.

Nunes MC1,2, Madhi SA1,2,3.

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a Medical Research Council: Respiratory and Meningeal Pathogens Research Unit , University of the Witwatersrand , Johannesburg , South Africa.
b Department of Science and Technology/National Research Foundation: Vaccine Preventable Diseases , University of the Witwatersrand , Johannesburg , South Africa.
c National Institute for Communicable Diseases: A Division of National Health Laboratory Service , Centre for Vaccines and Immunology , Johannesburg , South Africa.


Infants younger than 6 months of age are at particular risk for serious illness from influenza infection. Currently available influenza vaccines are, however, not licensed for use in infants <6 months old. Influenza vaccination during pregnancy elicits robust antibody responses in the women that will protect the infants against influenza infection during the first few months of life. We aimed to determine the impact of influenza vaccination during pregnancy to prevent laboratory-confirmed influenza infection and influenza-associated hospitalisations in infants <6 months old. An electronic search identified all studies assessing the proposed outcomes in infants after administration of influenza vaccine during pregnancy. Two meta-analyses were performed accordingly to studies restricting the evaluation to influenza-associated hospitalisations or not. Four randomized control trials and 3 observational studies reported on the prevention of laboratory-confirmed influenza infection in infants <6 months old. Maternal influenza vaccination was associated with a 48% [95% confidence interval (CI): 33 to 59] reduced risk of infants having laboratory-confirmed influenza infection. Four observational studies reported on the prevention of hospitalizations associated with laboratory-confirmed influenza infection and the pool estimate was 72% (95%CI: 39% to 87%). Receipt of influenza vaccine during pregnancy was associated with decreased risk of laboratory-confirmed influenza infection in the infants.


immunization; infants; influenza; influenza infection; laboratory-confirmed; pregnancy

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