Hi Dr. Sears,
Thanks so much for having this board. My four year old had a reaction at two months old after receiving pentacel and the rotavirus vaccine. The reaction was a high pitched scream and inconsolable crying for close to three and a half hours. We were told that the reaction was most likely due to the pertussis portion of pentacel. Since that time we've selectively vaccinated and received few vaccines (hib, one dose of polio, one rotavirus and a dose of prevnar).I followed your book as to what you felt was important and was the least reactive. I'm torn as to what is best to do at this point and would greatly appreciate your opinion. We've been contemplating Dt but I recall reading on the AskDrSears board that you had in the past that tetanus could possibly be quite reactive when there is a history of reactions to Dtap? Do the chances of a reaction lessen as a child gets older? Our state mandates so many vaccines and I can't sleep at night thinking of what is best to do especially regarding the MMR, Hep B and the varicella vaccine. What do you recommend to parents whose children had similar reactions?
Thank you again Dr. Sears so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to have this board.
I would not get the DTaP anymore, ever. REactions can worsen. I would say there is no safe age for your child, given the reaction. I would not bother with DT either, since we don't have D in the U.S. and T is extremely rare. IF you feel you should get T later, you could - but I'd wait until the preteen years when the risk of T goes up a tiny bit. I think you can continue to carefully vaccinate with other vaccines, as long as they are tolerated well.
Dr. Sears- Thank you so much for your reply. I will not even consider Dtap or even Dt. We've been extremely cautious since and haven't given many vaccines (only a few of the least reactive vaccines according to your book) and when we did only one vaccine was given at a time and was spaced out (for example only one vaccine was given last year). I'm now at the point of deciding about the more reactive ones and whether or not to give them. We have about a year before school and I'm trying to figure out a safe schedule. Is there any vaccine in particular that you feel would be better tolerated over another (such as hep b vs. MMR)? Have you seen similar reactions to pentacel or other vaccines?
When I took my child the following day after the reaction I was told by the doctor that if there is any type of neurological issue in the future it would be related to the vaccine. My child is very sensitive to loud noise such as the dryers in rest rooms, hair dryers, dog barking, etc. Do you feel that there is a link to the vaccine reaction? It's disheartening and I'm so torn as to what's best to do.
I can't thank you enough for all of your research and I truly value your opinion. You book has been such a valuable guide to my friends and I. I wish there were more doctors out there like you that are honest and truly care for children and their parents in every respect.
If your child is sensitive to noise like that, this may be a type of sensory/auditory processing disorder. I can't really give you details on that here, but if it is such a sensitivity, I'd recommend NO more vaccines. It could be related to the vaccine reaction, but it may now - and there's no way to tell now.