What can you tell me about the rotavirus vaccine? - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-03-2008, 09:49 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm torn on this one. My DD didn't get it and I don't think it was even available. She hasn't had rotavirus as far as I know, although she did have a nasty stomach bug at 12 months which I guess could have been rota. Now I have a 7-week-old who is "supposed" to get the rota vax at his 2 month appt. and I need to make a decision.

We're a delayed/selective vaccine family. I tend to put a lot of weight on how likely it is that my child will encounter an illness in the real world, and apparently Rota is quite common and it is more of a "when" than an "if" that he will catch it. We don't do daycare situations but we do go to playgrounds, LLL, etc.

Anyone want to break down the pros and cons?
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Old 02-03-2008, 09:59 PM
 
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con- it's for diarrhea (and only covers 2 serotypes)
it's a live virus and is well-known for shedding/cross contamination to other people
side effects are practically the same as the actual illness
rotavirus infection DOES convey natural immunity, most often after two natural infections (often without symptoms)
---in fact, the CDC says that 95% of children get rota before age 5 and that after just one natural infection 88% of them are protected from severe diarrhea

pro- can't think of any (can you tell I think this vaccine is ridiculous?)
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Old 02-03-2008, 10:23 PM
 
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Pros - rotavirus can be very serious, even fatal. Your baby could be up for days with little sleep, vomitting and diarhea. It can last for 10 days until it starts to get better. It could lead to dehydration and can make life miserable for everyone. It could lead to hospitalization for dehydration. The vaccine can make it much less severe or not even noticeable. My baby had it twice in 3 mos and it was a horrendous experience for us both. 10 days each of nonstop nursing, vomitting, diarrhea, and very little sleep. A lot of laundry. I lost weight from not being able to eat enough as I was so busy taking care of a very sick baby. She would not take any other foods of liquids even though she was of age. It was terrible. Our second baby is getting this vax.

I have never heard of anyone in real life who has had a problem with shedding. Like any virus, it could be contracted through contact with feces. So, just like you probably do on a regular basis, wash your hands after changing dipes and follow good hygiene with regards to dipe changes.

Cons - it is a new vaccine but it has been tested for short term effects.
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Old 02-03-2008, 10:23 PM
 
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Here is a post that leads to several threads -

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...96&postcount=2
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Old 02-03-2008, 10:30 PM
 
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I guess the pro is that it might prevent a bad case of rotavirus.

What your dd had at 12 months was very possibly rota. Most kids have it before age 3.

My main beef with the vax is that it might be contaminated with weirdo cow viruses, since it's a live vaccine grown in monkey cells that are fed with fetal bovine serum.

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...ghlight=bovine
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Old 02-03-2008, 10:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by attachedmamaof3 View Post
con- it's for diarrhea (and only covers 2 serotypes)
it's a live virus and is well-known for shedding/cross contamination to other people

Hmm, maybe that's why all the kids are getting sick, because of the vaccinated kiddies, eh? They just walk around shedding the viruses, kids get sick, everyone gets scared about RSV so they get their kids vaccinated...(rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat). It's a win win situation for the vax manufacturers.

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Old 02-03-2008, 10:54 PM
 
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Tammy- RSV is a respiratory disease...

Respiratory syncytial virus- common cause of bronchitis/pneumonia


I think you meant rota!

But yes, that's entirely possible.
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Old 02-03-2008, 11:14 PM
 
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rotavirus can be very serious, even fatal. Your baby could be up for days with little sleep, vomitting and diarhea. It can last for 10 days until it starts to get better. It could lead to dehydration and can make life miserable for everyone. It could lead to hospitalization for dehydration.
This was my experience almost exactly. I had 3 kids (5, 4, 1) all get rota during the same week. It was not a minor illness for us. All 3 were hospitalized, dehydrated, had severe electrolyte imablances and blood sugars so low they were unresponsive. They had abdominal cramping and diarrhea for weeks after they were stabalized and lost a huge percentage of body weight. The older two missed 3 weeks of preschool. I have a new appreciation as to why so many children without access to health care die from rotavirus.
My children were not vaccinated because the vaccine was not available at the time. After what we went through, this is a vaccine I would have given.

Good luck with your decision.
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Old 02-03-2008, 11:20 PM
 
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I recently had to rethink not getting this vaccination. YOu can read a little here about that:
http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=820778

However, in the end, we are pretty much still thinking no on the rotavirus vaccine. But our minds might still change.

"Parents are simply trustees; they do not own the bodies of their children"-Norm Cohen  Martial arts instructor intactlact.gifhomebirth.jpgnak.gif and mom to 4: DD1 (1/05) DS (7/06) DD2 (5/08) DD3 (2/11)
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Old 02-03-2008, 11:24 PM
 
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Seeing as people are posting anecdotal evidence, I will add my story. Two out of my three children have had rotavirus (that I know about), DD #1 was 9 months old and DD #2 was 18 months old. It was a minor illness for both, I did take DD #1 to the doctor because I was a nervous first time mom and the advice I got was so bad that I ignored it -- I was told to stop nursing her and give her congi (Chinese rice porridge). When DD #2 got it, I was quite able to handle it myself. I would never give my baby that vaccine.

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Old 02-03-2008, 11:47 PM
 
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My son got a severe case of rotovirus (he wasn't vaccinated), ended up in the hospital, took him weeks to recover (due to loss of weight, exhaustion), I stayed in the hospital with him, nursing, feeding, it was horrible, it was rough. When my daughter was born, it was one of the few I gave her, to see your child that sick, its heartbreaking.
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Old 02-03-2008, 11:59 PM
 
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ds was about 18 months when he had it. It was a pretty bad case, but we did intensive pedialyte "oral rehydration therapy" (one sip every 5 minutes or so to prevent him just puking it up) and avoided the ER. He slept through most of it.

It was pretty gross.
I washed a lot of blankets and towels that week.
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Old 02-04-2008, 12:00 AM
 
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Rotavirus is not a big deal at all. The biggest problem with rotavirus is dehydration, but proper care will take care of that.

Is it really worth it to inject your child with something which long term side effects are unknown just to possibly prevent a really nasty case of diarrhea?
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Old 02-04-2008, 12:32 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by attachedmamaof3 View Post
Tammy- RSV is a respiratory disease...

Respiratory syncytial virus- common cause of bronchitis/pneumonia


I think you meant rota!

But yes, that's entirely possible.
Ooops, yes!

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Old 02-04-2008, 01:06 AM
 
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No way would I even consider this vaccine.

I have 2 boys (4 and 19 mos) - neither have had the vax, neither have had rota.

This is a new vax and there have been SERIOUS side effects from this vaccine, including death.

Again, no WAY would I consider a vaccine for vomiting and diarrhea. Just not worth the risks (as small as they may be).

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Old 02-04-2008, 01:28 AM
 
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Not a chance would I even consider this vax. The last rotavirus vax was pulled due to Intussusception (sp??), which is twisting of the intestines as a side effect of the vaccine. In case your wondering, thats bad. I worked with horses for years, and thats what happens to them when the colic & roll - and then die.

Anyways. This vaccine has also been shown to have Intussusception occur as a side effect. It hasn't been pulled yet (obviously) cause' the cdc doesn't think its a big deal. Personally, I care to differ.

VAERS search for "Intussusception" in ROTHB5 vaccine
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:07 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tammyswanson View Post
Hmm, maybe that's why all the kids are getting sick, because of the vaccinated kiddies, eh? They just walk around shedding the viruses, kids get sick, everyone gets scared about RSV so they get their kids vaccinated...(rinse, repeat, rinse, repeat). It's a win win situation for the vax manufacturers.
All the kids I know who are getting it are unvaxed
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:10 AM
 
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The new one, Rotateq, has been tested for Intussusception and has been shown to have no greater incidence of it than without the vax. In another words, you can get it even unvaxed and your chances are just as good as if you were vaxed with rotateq.

http://pediatrics.jwatch.org/cgi/con...ull/2007/228/1

http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/...historical.htm
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:14 AM
 
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This is a new vax and there have been SERIOUS side effects from this vaccine, including death.

Again, no WAY would I consider a vaccine for vomiting and diarrhea. Just not worth the risks (as small as they may be).
Children die from the virus, too. There are always risks with vaxing and not vaxing.
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:43 AM
 
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OP, less than 20 a year die due to rotavirus...out of the thousands who get it.

Unfortunately, we don't know the risks of this vaccine because it's just too new.

Additionally, here's some interesting info-

actual rotavirus infection:

diarrhea
dehydration
electrolyte imbalance (due to dehydration?)
metabolic acidosis

rotavirus vaccine:

diarrhea
vomiting
otitis media (ear infection)
nasopharyngitis
fever
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:47 AM
 
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Children die from the virus, too. There are always risks with vaxing and not vaxing.
Statistically children don't die of it where there is access to basic medical care.

-Angela
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:53 AM
 
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My middle grandchild had it when he was just around 1 yo. He is completely vaccine-free.

One of us had to carry him around otherwise he would cry. We took turns carrying him and changing diapers continuously. He slept through most of it.

He nursed every once in a while, enough to keep hydrated. We did not take him to a doctor. He was much better within two days.

Now he pretty much immune for life.

No, we would not inject him with a virus and toxins combo.
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:55 AM
 
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OP, less than 20 a year die due to rotavirus...out of the thousands who get it.
Millions a year, actually.
4 million birth cohort...every kid gets it before 5...at least 4 million cases a year.

Also, the CDC thinks some (or most?) of those deaths are possibly preventable with proper at-home treatment.

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5216a1.htm

Quote:
Home Management of Acute Diarrhea
Treatment with ORS is simple and enables management of uncomplicated cases of diarrhea at home, regardless of etiologic agent. As long as caregivers are instructed properly regarding signs of dehydration or are able to determine when children appear markedly ill or appear not to be responding to treatment, therapy should begin at home. Early intervention can reduce such complications as dehydration and malnutrition. Early administration of ORS leads to fewer office, clinic, and emergency department (ED) visits (37) and to potentially fewer hospitalizations and deaths.
ORS= oral rehydration solution
http://pedialyte.com/
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Old 02-04-2008, 03:21 AM
 
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I stand corrected!!

I assume that breastmilk would also "count" as an ORS?
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Old 02-04-2008, 04:00 AM
 
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I think you're supposed to give breastmilk in addition to the ORS. However much they usually nurse + the pedialyte.

ETA:
Here's how they word it:

Quote:
Recommendations for maintenance dietary therapy depend on the age and diet history of the patient. Breastfed infants should continue nursing on demand. Formula-fed infants should continue their usual formula immediately upon rehydration in amounts sufficient to satisfy energy and nutrient requirements.
I take that as meaning you should both breastfeed as much as possible, and (for a smaller baby) use a water dropper or spoon to get some pedialyte in, as well?
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Old 02-04-2008, 09:58 AM
 
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Children die from the virus, too. There are always risks with vaxing and not vaxing.
How many children die where there is access to things like pedialyte??

Funny, when ds1 was a baby, this vax wasnt on the schedule, and there was no FEAR, no WORRIES about diarrrhea/ vomiting....maybe because it didnt have an official NAME or VACCINE??

I would much rather take my chances with the virus then possibly causing Intussusception/ death in my child ~

Quote:
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is notifying health care providers and consumers about 28 post-marketing reports of intussusception following administration of Rotavirus, Live, Oral, Pentavalent vaccine (trade name RotaTeq), manufactured by Merck and Co., Inc. Intussusception is a serious and potentially life-threatening condition that occurs when the intestine gets blocked or twisted.
http://www.fda.gov/cber/safety/phnrota021307.htm

Again, this is a new vax.....wouldnt be surprised if this one is pulled (like its' predecessor).

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Old 02-04-2008, 11:45 AM
 
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Here's a good article about rotavirus.
http://insidevaccines.com/wordpress/?p=64

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Old 02-04-2008, 12:34 PM
 
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Also, the CDC thinks some (or most?) of those deaths are possibly preventable with proper at-home treatment.
So, from what I gather, if parents would educated themselves on the proper care of a child with this illness, the deaths and complications from this illness would be much, much less.
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Old 02-04-2008, 12:43 PM
 
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This is one vax I refused when DS was a baby. He got a mild case of rotavirus when he was a year and a half (and we were in the car!! Eeek! A two hour drive with a barfing kid....not fun.) He was very sick for about three days, but was still managing to eat and was playing in between pooping and puking. Of course, then I got it. We all survived.
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Old 02-04-2008, 01:37 PM
 
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That seems like a lot. I went on the pedialyte website and the little chart says for my sons age/weight I should be giving 36-42 oz a day! That is how much he would take in just nursing. So you nurse and do the pedialyte?

To the OP – We decided against this vax just because I don’t think it’s necessary. I am from Canada and if the government there doesn’t recommend it then why would I get it in the states? I read that every kid encounters this before the age of 5 and I don’t remember anyone talking about this until the past year or so. I’m not even sure when this got put on the schedule but it was probably recently since people are talking about it now. The other reason I would not consider it is because my state does not require it for school entry.
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