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January 1974

Comment on Vaccination During Pregnancy

Arch Dermatol. 1974;109(1):97. doi:10.1001/archderm.1974.01630010069023

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To the Editor.—  In the April 1973 issue of the Archives, Carney et al, in their article on eczema vaccinatum and eczema herpeticum in Darier disease, state that one study reported a 50% rate of congenital malformations in offspring of women vaccinated during pregnancy. They quote as their reference for this statement an article by MacArthur, which appeared in Lancet (2:1104, 1952), titled "Congenital Vaccinia and Vaccinia Gravidarum."On checking this reference, I found that MacArthur's findings were incorrectly interpreted. He found that out of a total of 67 pregnant women vaccinated during the first trimester, 24% "failed to give birth to a normal child." The percentage of women vaccinated in the second and third months of pregnancy who did not give birth to normal children was 47%. However, on analyzing these cases, only one patient was documented as having produced a child with a congenital abnormality, the nature

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