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opinions on the flu shot

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 

hey ladies,

 

i had my 16 week appointment today.

my "doctor" is a rotation of 4 doctors at an all-female practice. this way i can meet and get to know all of the women & know who will be delivering our baby, with no surprises or "who the hell are you and where is my doctor?" when i go into labor.

anyway.

today i met one of the women for the first time, and when i went in for routine blood work, i was told i'm getting a flu shot. i say no, i am not, and never will. i had her lecture me about the severe risks of not doing so, and how high the influenza rate is in colorado and blah blah. then she started pushing boosters and vacs in general. i'm appalled, and i feel pressured.

i have never had a flu shot in my entire life, and have never had the flu. i'm very healthy. my fiance is very healthy and has also never had a flu shot or the flu. we're in our late 20's. she told him that he needs to get vaccinated as well, because he'll be in contact with the baby.

 

i've always been pretty set in my ways with this issue. i've never had another human life to account for though.

how do you women feel about this? i'm very confused, and very worried. and pretty mad at this doctor for being so pushy and dismissive of my wishes.

 

are you all getting a flu shot in this pregnancy? are you getting the pertussis vac? i know that everyone's opinions and experiences are different, that's why i'm asking here. and we're all in the same stage of pregnancy, which is wonderful for getting a grasp of things.

 

stillheart.gif

post #2 of 45

No flu vaccine for me, no way!!! I do not think it is safe at all. Jmo!

post #3 of 45

I absolutely will NOT be getting one.  Had that little discussion right up front with my new doc, who (politely) asked why.  I gave him several of the reasons why and he was ok with it.  I would be so pissed if a doc had talked to me like that.  :( 

post #4 of 45
I've never had a flu shot. Never had a doc pressure me about it either.
post #5 of 45
No shot here either.
post #6 of 45

I have had flu shots in the past, the first one while i was pregnant with my 1st - i think i had one when i was pg with my 2nd, and a couple other times when i was not pregnant - but i haven't had one in a couple years and don't plan to get anymore, my views on vaxs have changed, obviously.    i've had the flu a couple times, once in HS and once during a year when i had a flu shot - my older 2 kids have had a few flushots too .. but we aren't doing anymore..  we do homeschool so i don't feel like they are as high risk, though we do travel a lot so sometimes that changes depending on where we are going..  i did have the pertussis booster a little over a year ago..  i would not get it while pregnant, my 2 yr old has a really hard time with that vax (dtap) so i got it to try to protect her because we are delaying the remainder of her dtaps as long as possible..    

post #7 of 45

I was told by my employer that the flu shot is mandatory for all hospital workers. I hate to be dishonest, but I'm going to somehow convince them that my OB gave it to me. Screw them! They come around to all of the units with a cart and just vaccinate everyone. Every time I have ever gotten the flu shot, I have gotten sick from it - even though this contradicts the science behind it (it's not a live virus, there's no way it can cause the flu, etc). 

 

If you are considering getting the flu shot, now is NOT a good time. It's too early in the season.  I just had a lengthy discussion with a colleague (who is an Osteopathic physician). He was saying that the flu virus can "morph" into a different strain. (This is why they make a new & different vaccine every year). Which means if you get the injection now, by the time you really need the coverage - when the flu virus  is peaking - you may not be covered. The best time to get it is between Halloween and Thanksgiving. In my experience, the only people who really need the flu shot are the elderly - for them, the flu can be deadly and the benefits outweigh the risks.  

post #8 of 45

I'm getting it. We vaccinate, and while I dont usually get a flu shot, I get one in pregnancy. I've had the flu- I dont want it in my third trimester.

post #9 of 45

I've never gotten it, and never will.  Its been years since I have had anything remotely close to the flu anyways.  I am not a fan of vaccines in general anymore and prefer to do a limited amount and I think our child will be on a very spread out limited schedule as well.  I've even stopped them with the dogs, except for the rabies required by law.

 

I'm pretty stubborn so if a doc or vet or someone wants to lecture me on it, I don't mind, but it's a waste of their breath  lol!

post #10 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by JessNP View Post

I was told by my employer that the flu shot is mandatory for all hospital workers. I hate to be dishonest, but I'm going to somehow convince them that my OB gave it to me. Screw them! They come around to all of the units with a cart and just vaccinate everyone. Every time I have ever gotten the flu shot, I have gotten sick from it - even though this contradicts the science behind it (it's not a live virus, there's no way it can cause the flu, etc). 

 

If you are considering getting the flu shot, now is NOT a good time. It's too early in the season.  I just had a lengthy discussion with a colleague (who is an Osteopathic physician). He was saying that the flu virus can "morph" into a different strain. (This is why they make a new & different vaccine every year). Which means if you get the injection now, by the time you really need the coverage - when the flu virus  is peaking - you may not be covered. The best time to get it is between Halloween and Thanksgiving. In my experience, the only people who really need the flu shot are the elderly - for them, the flu can be deadly and the benefits outweigh the risks.  

 

Right, I've always been under the impression that you should get it in early November. 

 

One thing to remember is that for some people, not getting the flu shot during pregnancy is just fine. But IMO, when you are in and out of doctors offices all the time, it's probably better for you to get it. I wouldnt think twice about not getting the shot if I was with a midwife and birthing at home.

post #11 of 45
Thread Starter 

thank you!

 

i was just told to sit down and there was a needle on the table. the nurse just told me that i was getting a flu shot. my fiance and i looked at her and i said no, i'm not.

i was dumbfounded. so i have some time to think about it, i've gathered. i really don't want to get it, but honestly, the doctor made me quite scared. i'm a first time mom, so i just don't really know what i'm supposed to do.

post #12 of 45

I've never gotten a flu shot. My stance on vaccines is STILL up in the air, but I err on the side of not getting them. The flu shot seems pointless unless you are part of an at-risk population. I used to be able to say "I never get sick!" but my immune system isn't what it used to be (GI issues, years of sleep deprivation after having kids) and I catch everything that my kids bring home. I had a stomach flu (which wasn't covered by the shot anyway) when I was pregnant with DS2 and it was the pits.

post #13 of 45

I had the flu (or something similar) in my last week of pregnancy with my last baby. Week long fever and body pain; it was horrible, but I'd still prefer not to get the flu shot. Fevers are generally not harmful to the baby later in pregnancy, it is during the first 16 weeks in which you need to be careful.

post #14 of 45

Ugh - I don't know what to do! I think I'm going to read up on it some more. I just wish the darn shot didn't always make me sick. I am pretty much guaranteed a fever, fatigue and muscle aches for a good 3-5 days after the shot. On the other hand, getting the actual flu is much worse. The problem is that we really have no idea what this winter will bring. This past winter of 2011-12 had one of the lowest rates of the flu ever, while the previous winter of 2010-11 was one of the worst. 

post #15 of 45
Thread Starter 

i'm in the same boat. i'm just scared for the baby, not myself so much. i've never had the flu, or any type of flu for that matter. maybe a cold once or twice in my life.

i work from home, and i don't go out or have much contact with people in general, and my fiance also works from his home office. we're pretty low-risk, i'd say. i've read so much on flu shots and vas in general, and would love to not vaccinate, but laws and school rules and everything else in between seem to make that difficult. autism rates for vaccines seem to be linked as well, but who knows. i feel like it's all speculation from bad personal experiences or anger with the system in general, but overall i believe we are way over medicated anyway. headscratch.gif

post #16 of 45

Let me preface this by saying I haven't done much research on vaccines since DD was an infant, so some things have probably changed.  In a nutshell, there are two main additives to vaccines that are potentially problematic: thimerosol, which contains mercury and is used as a preservative, and aluminum, which is used to sort of boost the action of the vaccine (it's not in many vaccines either).  Thimerosol is no longer used in MOST children's vaccines, except the flu vaccine.  In the flu vaccines it is ONLY used in the multi-dosed bottles.  The single-use bottles don't need the preservative.

 

Aluminum is a problem for premies and very young infants who may not have functioning livers.  For healthy adults it seems to leave the body very quickly.  You also get aluminum from baked goods that contain baking soda, anti-perspirant, and aluminum cookware.  I personally avoid all these things too, but the amount in a vaccine really is pretty small.

 

We decided to get DD vaccinated with the vaccines that we deemed important, but we delayed getting them until she was a little older, and I checked the labels for the first shots she got to make sure there was no aluminum or thimerosol (there wasn't).  We certainly did not do the Hep B vac in the hospital.  I got vaccinated for the flu and for the H1N1 virus (which was a concern that year) a couple months before she was born, partly to protect both of us during the pregnancy, but largely because I was told that if I got vaccinated while pregnant I would confer resistance to the baby after birth as well.  If you get vaccinated while breastfeeding you confer immunity as well, but my doctor said it's more effective when you're pregnant. 

 

I would be very wary about getting a flu vaccine from a multi-dose bottle.  The amount of mercury is probably less than you'd get in some fish, but to be honest I sort of avoid fish during pregnancy because of mercury.  Why risk it?  I will probably choose to get vaccinated again, and I'll probably wait at least until November so that the baby will have a decently long period of immunity after birth.  I will definitely ask for a single-use bottle.  (you might need to ask about this ahead of time so that they can order it in for you.)  If you're concerned about the potential of it having aluminum, ask to see the ingredient list.

post #17 of 45
Thread Starter 

that's really interesting-thank you for the information!

i don't eat fish or animal products for that matter (i'm vegan) so i'm pretty sure my mercury intake is low/nonexistent unless they're sneaking it into my broccoli at the farmer's market. ;)

i will definitely keep that in mind!

 

i finally got ahold of my elusive mother today, who has a medical background, and she was like, never go to that doctor again. you definitely should not get a flu shot at this point in pregnancy, and you should only get one around christmas, if you're high-risk.

post #18 of 45

wow- yeah.  i just got a physical and was pushed for the DTaP (or is it TDaP these days?) and flu.  i will be avoiding anyone who wants to push that issue right now.  

 

Never had the flu shot, and haven't had the flu in years.  Stay-at-home, homebirthing mother with minimal illness over the last few years.  neither my husband nor i have had the flu since college.  if i were worried about getting the flu, then i would probably consider some preventative care, but other than fermented cod-liver oil in the winter (good source of Vit D), we tend to not worry too much about getting sick from colds and viruses.  that said, we tend to be strong and healthy for much of the year, and feel like we can treat most things pretty easily with rest and good food.  it's worked for about 8 years, so until i bump into something that we need more support on, will probably continue doing what's been working!

post #19 of 45

I am a SAHM and we don't go out much other than normal errands like grocery shopping, restaraunts, church etc.... We got the Flu 2 Februarys ago, when DS2 was only 3 months old. It was awful for me, I was up puking all night, had a temp of 104, etc.. but the severe symptoms only lasted 2 days, then I just had a bad cold for a couple weeks. Last year (also in February..) I got the Norovirus, which there is no vax for, and it was MUCH worse than the flu. No I didn't get a fever, but I was puking and had diahrrea NON-STOP for 8 hours. I thought I was going to die. It took my body 4 days to recover from it. All this to say, you CAN get the flu, even if you don't think you are susceptible.. but I have not ever had, nor will I ever get a flu vax. But we WILL take a LOT more precautions this winter to keep healthy!!!

post #20 of 45

I would seriously consider getting vaxed for noro and rotavirus if that was available. My kids have brought those home a few times, and whereas they'll maybe puke once and/or have diarrhea with minimal fever I will be sick as a dog for a week!

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