Smallpox Vaccine in Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
Home > Reference> Formulary> Drugs in Pregnancy > Smallpox vaccine

Vaccine, Vaccinia - Smallpox, (Dryvax )

CATEGORY:C [Manufacturer]

Live attenuated virus vaccine.

Vaccinia should not be administered to pregnant women for routine nonemergency indications. Although vaccinia vaccine is not known to cause congenital malformations primary vaccination with vaccinia virus has been reported to cause fetal infection. Fetal vaccinia usually results in stillbirth or death of the infant shortly after delivery. [2,3,4]

There are no absolute contraindications regarding vaccination of a person with a high-risk exposure to smallpox.

BREAST FEEDING: It is not known whether vaccine antigens or antibodies are excreted in human milk. This vaccine is not recommended for use in a nursing mother in non-emergency conditions [2, 4].


1. Briggs GG,Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ, Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation 5th edition,Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins,1998
2. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. Vaccinia (Smallpox) Vaccine Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), 2001 MMWR 50 (No. RR-10): 1-25, 2001.
3. Levine MM. Live-virus vaccines in pregnancy. Risks and recommendations. Lancet. 1974 ;2:34-8. MEDLINE
4. Dryvax package insert 2002

Created: 11/27/2002
Last Update: 11/27/2002

Home | About | Disclaimer | Privacy | Contact

This website does not give medical advice.
Information on this website is provided for educational and
 entertainment purposes only.
Please review the
Disclaimer  before using this site.
The information provided on this site is updated periodically. It is likely that the information presented will not include all information currently available. Keep in mind the limitations of this information.

Copyright © 2007 by Focus Information Technology. All rights reserved.