Do Covid vaccines impair fertility? No.
A journey through the world's latest birth data shows no noticeable impact from vaccines
One of the more plausible Covid vaccine fears I’ve seen is that they impair fertility — potentially making people infertile, or leading to other problems.
Recently, for example, Project Veritas did an undercover recording of a Pfizer executive, who said that the vaccines have been known to interrupt menstrual cycles. Here, a U.K. member of parliament who watched that video calls for an immediate halt on Covid vaccines:
And it’s true — one doesn’t even have to listen to undercover recordings. The NIH says: “Study confirms link between COVID-19 vaccination and temporary increase in menstrual cycle length … of less than one day.”
It’s certainly enough to raise the question — does the vaccine impact fertility?
Studies find that it does not. Specifically, this study looked at people trying to conceive; 897 unvaccinated people and 1,229 vaccinated ones. They found clear null results — vaccinated people were no more or less likely to conceive.
But many people, somewhat understandably, don’t trust studies coming from establishment outlets.
Fortunately, it’s now been well over a year since most people were vaccinated. We should KNOW by now whether or not vaccines impacted fertility just by looking at the new babies who were recently born.
What I want to know is, are there countries around the world that have seen more healthy births after the people have been vaccinated?
If so, that makes the vaccine concerns minor at most.
Alternatively, if we see significant increases in unhealthy births, or can’t find anywhere that isn’t seeing a decline — that’d be a sign that maybe something is up.
As I write the above, I don’t know the answer yet. Let’s find out:
Relevant data takes digging to find
It turns out that governments are shockingly slow at recording something as simple as births.
Most developed countries have published birth data for 2021, but not for any of 2022.
That’s a problem, because vaccines were mostly administered around the world in the middle two quarters of 2021 — which means that any relevant impact on births should start showing up right around the start of 2022, and continuing through the year.
I was disappointed to see that the US, and most countries, don’t seem to post any birth data for 2022 on their official statistics websites. But some random countries around the world DO have that data, and those are the ones I’ll be relying on here. Specifically, I found it for these nine countries:
Spain, France, Colombia, Denmark, Finland, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, North Macedonia, Zimbabwe.
At least it’s a diverse list! If you know of other countries that have this data, do let me know. All 2022 data is from their government websites.
ALL 9 countries saw declines in births in 2022, but often it was in line with trends
In Spain, births have been plummeting for years, and neither Covid nor vaccination sped that up. In fact, the speed of the nosedive slowed just slightly in the year after people were vaccinated.
If you’re curious, Spain is now FAR below replacement at around 1.1 births per woman, down from a bit over 1.3 in 2016. So the number of ethnic Spaniards in every generation will roughly halve. It’s sure looks like a civilizational suicide at this point.
But back to the main question of the post: Spain provides no evidence that vaccines reduce fertility, and provides weak evidence that they don’t (because the decrease slowed.)
Here’s France. The French birthrate is much healthier than the Spanish one (France is around 1.8), and is also falling more slowly.
In France, births fell after Covid. They also fell slightly in 2022, but not enough to be visible in the graph.
It’s further evidence that the vaccines have not had a notable impact on fertility.
Moving outside of Europe for a bit — Colombia showed both a drop during Covid, and then another similar drop in 2022. Its rate is now at about 1.6, below France.
Incredibly, Columbia’s fertility rate was 6.7 kids per woman, back around when my parents were born. It’s amazing how fast such cultural things can shift.
In isolation, Colombia is consistent with vaccines slightly impacting fertility. Though the total fall in 2022 (6% of births) is not a world-stopper.
Denmark shows a small Covid “baby boom” in 2021, which is similar in nearby Norway.
A Norwegian friend of mine chalked their boom up people being bored at home, as well as to a more positive mindset in Norway (people may have been less panicked about economic conditions and such.) That would likely apply to Denmark, as well.
The plunge in 2022 could be read as vaccines derailing that boom, but I think a more common-sense analysis is that Danes are just A) returning to their baseline fertility and B) adjusting to the extra kids they just had in 2021.
Oh — off point, but, a random surprising thing I noticed while going through Denmark’s statistics database: Immigrants — both western and non-western immigrants — actually have slightly lower fertility rates than natives:
That was quite surprising to me, because the countries that migrants come from often have dramatically higher fertility rates than Denmark.
Perhaps Denmark, which has relatively strict migration policies, is getting its immigrants to assimilate to the Danish culture of female independence and higher education (which is the strongest predictor of low birth rates.)
Mostly the same as Denmark.
Kazakhstan is a rare country that’s had a generally-rising trend in births.
Kazakhstan’s graph is what one would expect if vaccines were causing a big problem, except that A) Kazakhstan developed and used its own non-mRNA vaccine, and B) the drop is probably explained by Kazakhstan’s political and economic instability in 2022.
Covid seems to have had a relatively big impact on births in Mongolia (maybe because of economic hardship?) but the declining trend began before vaccines would’ve had an effect.
It’s pretty interesting browsing African governments’ statistical websites. Some of them haven’t updated data like births for a decade. I’m sure they have more pressing problems than presenting statistics.
Zimbabwe, fortunately, just put out a new fertility report that counted births from mid-2021 through mid-2022 (which I plotted as 2022 on the below chart.)
Combining that with the older World Bank data, we get:
As with many countries, it’s in line with the general trend.
Zimbabwe is a very un-vaccinated country, with only about 40% of the whole population vaccinated.
Yet the general pattern is similar to that of developed countries with high vaccination rates — in line with earlier falling trends.
Now we have North Macedonia, the country that used to be called just “Macedonia” but which changed its name in 2019.
That story is kind of funny: Greece is jealous of the name, because Greece has a province called Macedonia, which they say is the real one. It’s particularly important to them because Alexander the Great was from Macedonia (not North Macedonia!)
Anyway, Macedonia finally caved and changed their whole country’s name in 2019, because they want to be part of the EU — and EU-member Greece has veto power over admissions.
With that out of the way:
Certainly there’s no evidence in that chart of a vaccine effect or a Covid effect, even as births declined in 2022 (like everywhere else.)
North Macedonia was the only country I saw that they also listed stillbirths along with births. That’d be a good number to know, because what if vaccines don’t prevent conception, but do cause other problems? But there’s no indication of that, from their data:
There was an increase when the vaccines were administered, though it still only rose to around the pre-Covid baseline. A study of thousands of women in Chicago who got vaccinated both before and during pregnancy also found no increase in any kind of problems detectable with ultrasound.
Enough countries have reported their data that we can conclude with near certainty that there was no significant impact on fertility from either Covid, or from vaccines. That’s also in line with what clinical trial studies found.
I’ve talked with plenty of people for whom this is a concern. But the data are clear, and people can stop worrying about it. It’s mostly a moot point now, but it’s worth getting on the record. Plus, Covid might be over, but mRNA vaccines for other viruses are certainly going to be invented in the future. People should be aware that this fear did not pan out.
Apparently it takes more than a vaccine that tells one’s cells to produce little spike proteins to truly disrupt a reproductive system.
That said, for mostly cultural reasons, fertility is falling in every one of the nine countries I could find with current data — from Zimbabwe, to Mongolia, to Denmark — and the fall generally reflected pre-pandemic trends as well.
That is something that perhaps should concern people:
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The study also claims that Covid infection might temporarily reduce male fertility, but I think that’s misleading, because their sample is tiny, the result is totally insignificant. Their result for men after Covid infection suggests a moderate decrease in fertility within the first 60 days after infection — but their data also shows that men who got Covid are about equally extra fertile after 60 days. So it’s just a garbage sample size.
Google gives one lots of hits from sites like “macrotrends .net” that act like they have current data, but really, they are just projecting based on past data.
there goes my retirement plan
i was told unvaccinated sperm was the next bitcoin
Since many other factors have influenced annual fertility data, I think the stronger response to this concern is to explain the medical logic that accounts for the symptoms such as longer menstrual cycle without cause for long-term worry.
Any major stressor can cause your body to say "nope, let's not get pregnant right now" and trip up your cycle. Such stressors can include vaccination, infection, strenuous exercise (I once had a weird month after a lengthy backpacking trip), etc. This is common and temporary.
Here's a great post on this, with the best parts excerpted below.
"'Vaccine hesitancy among young women is largely driven by false claims that covid-19 vaccines could harm their chances of future pregnancy. Failing to thoroughly investigate reports of menstrual changes after vaccination is likely to fuel these fears.'"
"In fact, the Covid-19 vaccine clinical trials did not even examine symptoms of menstrual changes, a typical pattern across trials."
"'It is biologically plausible that vaccines can affect menstrual cycles through short term disruptions to the immune system,' Gemma C. Sharp, Ph.D., a molecular epidemiology lecturer at the University of Bristol, agreed. 'Short-lived changes to the menstrual cycle are part of the body’s normal response to things like stress and immune disruptions.'"
"The MHRA also reported that the post-vaccine menstrual disorders are temporary, and symptoms include a sudden heavy period, delayed period, or abnormal vaginal bleeding."
Short-term "post-vaccine menstrual disorders are not unique to any given vaccine. It has been noted following Pfizer’s mRNA, Moderna’s mRNA, AstraZeneca’s DNA, and Johnson & Johnson’s DNA vaccines against Covid-19, as well as the human papillomavirus vaccines (more on this later)."
"People on hormonal contraception were more likely to report changes in menstrual flow following vaccination."
"Menstrual disorders can also happen following an infection. Dr. Male cited a study finding that 25% and 28% of women of childbearing age with Covid-19 (n = 237) had changes in menstrual volume and cycle, respectively.
"So, [short-term] menstrual changes can occur after vaccination or infection, suggesting that immune reactions to a stimulus are the likely driver. Once the immune reactions subside, the menstrual changes should subside too."
"We know that vaccines are generally unrelated to [long-term] menstrual disorders, except HPV vaccines. But even the link between HPV vaccines and [long-term] menstrual disorders is inconsistent."