Chickenpox and Pregnancy
For more information on chickenpox, see the factsheet
What do you need to know about chickenpox and pregnancy?
- Pregnant women who have never had chickenpox can develop severe illness if they get chickenpox while pregnant
- Chickenpox can also affect the developing baby if the mother becomes infected in the first half of pregnancy
- The newborn baby can develop severe chickenpox if the mother has chickenpox around the time of delivery
What can you do to protect yourself?
- Before you are thinking of becoming pregnant, have a blood test to check your antibodies for chickenpox to see if you are protected
- If you are not protected from chickenpox, you should consider the chickenpox vaccine.
- This vaccine cannot be used in pregnancy
- Women who receive this vaccine should wait 3 months to become pregnant
- A reliable form of birth control should be used during this time
- If a pregnant woman is not protected against chickenpox and finds out she has been exposed to someone with chickenpox, she should call her doctor immediately