NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - One of the groups carefully weighing the risks and benefits of the COVID-19 vaccines is pregnant women.

Pregnant and breastfeeding women are not excluded from receiving the vaccine, but experts are encouraging those women to talk to their doctors.

"My guidance to my patients is that while the vaccine wasn't studied specifically in pregnant women, women who did become pregnant after receiving the vaccine had outcomes that were similar to those who were not vaccinated,” said Doctor of Maternal and Fetal Medicine Amy Whitten.

Although pregnant and breastfeeding women were not included in the clinical trials, major organizations like the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists support vaccine use in those groups.

"I am pregnant so knowing that I am in the higher risk category to develop potentially some of the more severe symptoms of COVID it just gets me really nervous about being exposed for my job, and what that could mean for my health and for the health of my baby,” said school social worker Dana Houston-Jones.

After doing her own research Houston-Jones said she plans to get the vaccine as soon as she can.

"I am more anxious about what getting COVID would mean versus what the unknowns of a vaccine would mean, and overall I’m going to err on the side of trusting what my doctors and the professionals are recommending,” she said.

The bottom-line: pregnant women can choose to get the vaccine when they become eligible, though it's recommended that you discuss your individual risks and benefits with your doctor. is now with you on the go! Get the latest news updates and video, 4WARN weather forecast, weather radar, special investigative reports, sports headlines and much more from News4 Nashville.

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