• Varicella (Chickenpox)
  • Vaccine Recommendations

What are the recommendations for varicella vaccination before and after pregnancy?

Live varicella vaccine should not be given to anyone known to be pregnant. If a person who is planning to become pregnant in the future comes in for a visit or an annual exam, the varicella history should be obtained and if indicated, 2 doses of vaccine should be given, spaced 4 to 8 weeks apart. Vaccine recipients capable of becoming pregnant should be counseled to avoid pregnancy for one month following each dose of varicella vaccine. A person who is inadvertently vaccinated while pregnant or becomes pregnant within a month of vaccination should be counseled about the theoretical risk to the fetus; however, it should not be considered a reason to terminate a pregnancy. Pregnant people should be assessed for evidence of varicella immunity and if non-immune, should receive the first dose of varicella vaccine following completion of the pregnancy and prior to hospital discharge. A second dose should be given 4 to 8 weeks later.

Last reviewed: May 16, 2023

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