Just wanted to get your perspective on this...including the very knowledgeable abstainers...
Background: neither of my children have been vaccinated to date. My main issues are 1) safety of injected aluminum (Shaw, Tomljenovic etc.) and 2) I just don't think that many of the vaccines on the schedule are necessary, okay I'll qualify that, not necessary for MY family from MY perspective.
We moved from somewhere where the ground was frozen solid for about six months of the year to a place that is frost-free year round. The kids are playing in the dirt year round and as they get older and are off on excursions etc., they are under the care of teachers who perhaps are not as diligent about wound care as I would be, and that concerns me.
Yes, I know all about how statistically, it's more likely some senior out gardening who would get tetanus, not a healthy, robust kid. I also know how incredibly rare it is. I'm familiar with that.
Nevertheless, we have been in discussion with our family GP about the merit in doing the dT vaccine. Reasoning...it's the one option that doesn't come with a load of other antigens I don't want (like the infant combos containing pertussis, polio, hep B and the like) and it also has the least amount of aluminum of any other option.
If it provides a smidge of diphtheria protection, that'd be okay too, considering the case in Queensland back in 2011 where an unvaccinated woman came down with clinical diphtheria from her vaccinated friend who had just returned from Asia and apparently infected her with the bacteria. The woman died. Yes, also incredibly rare. Yet, many of my daughter's classmates holiday regularly in Indonesia, which still has about 800 reported cases a year (according to the WHO).
Okay, so looking at the Australian government's Immunisation Handbook, it states that the dT can be used as a primary course (three doses).
But then when you look up the actual product insert for the ADT booster, it states:
Interesting. So, do you think it's worth an email to both the government and manufacturer to find out what's the deal?
I did consider that it was perhaps because the antigen levels, as a booster, are so low...2 IU for diphtheria and 20 IU for tetanus (compared to 30 IU and 40 IU in the infant combos). But then I decided to check and see if there was any data on using a similar product as a primary course back in Canada and found this:
And the data for Td Adsorbed is:
According to the Canadian Immunization Guide, antitoxin titres of >0.1 IU/mL are considered protective.
The Td Adsorbed and the ADT Booster seem to contain similar amounts of toxoids. The Canadian one is in Lf vs. IU. It also has more aluminum and 2-phenoxyethanol, residual formaldehyde (ugh, but probably in the ADT Booster as well).
Anyway, does anyone have any info on how Lf equates to IU and second is there good data in the US on Td being used as a primary course?
Like I said, we're discussing options with the GP and I want to go into this with as much info as possible. We're not interested in any of the infant combos. They will not be getting any other vaccines until puberty, at that point we'll re-evaluate the risk and benefits of others. Again, nothing set in stone there either.
And yes, having not given either child any vaccines to date, I am aware, as stated, how rare either clinical diphtheria or clinical tetanus is. However, I cannot be with them all the time to ensure adequate wound care nor can I be 100% sure that their classmates don't bring home unwanted souvenirs from their last trip to Indonesia.
Edited by japonica - 9/4/12 at 7:54pm