New Rotavirus Vaccine on the Schedule - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 40 Old 05-01-2007, 02:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So, we (hubby and me) generally avoid new vaccines, just because they're new and we don't want our children to be used as the first guinea pigs in the real world experiment that is immunizations. However, when we generally delay a new vaccine or a change in the vaccine schedule, we're able to administer the shots later when (and if) we feel the safety of the vaccine has been proven to us, but this one's a little more tricky.

The "safety" (if it is indeed safe, that is) is when the first dose is given no later than 12 weeks and the 3rd and final dose given no later than 32 weeks. So, if we're going to decide to give it, we need to decide fast as the baby is 2 months old.

From what I'm seeing so far, the vaccine is completely unnecessary. Most kids are exposed to rotavirus before age 5, but only up to 70 children die from it every year. 250,000 are hospitalized. That means, out of hospitalized children, only 1 out of every 3,571 die every year ( that's only 0.028 % - I had worse odds when I did my VBAC, and the docs were confidant about me doing that, so what's the big deal??!!).

Of course, I'm looking at benefits vs. risks of the vaccine as well. But I gotta tell ya, after the last rotavirus vaccine fiasco, I'm not very confident in this new one. But I'm torn. I don't know what to do.

BTW - did anyone here even hear of rotavirus before learning about the vaccine?? If it's so horrible, why didn't I hear about it before? You'd think that something so terrible would've been all over the news, right?

Oh, and curious- does anyone think that the rotavirus vaccine will be added to school's lists of necessary vaccinations for admittance into school? Same question for daycare as well?


Thoughts??
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#2 of 40 Old 05-01-2007, 11:34 PM
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I have not heard of the rotavirus vaccine until today to be honest,....sorry we have been in the US only since a year.

Our boy had the rotavirus already twice, first time last fall (October/ November), which was not too bad, lasted only a week and again in the past month, this time around it took about three weeks to get rid of it!
All you can do is just wait it out and make sure that the kids are not dehydrated.
I really hope he will not get it again so quickly! I just have to be extra careful with him being out and about, meaning more desinfectant wipes in the purse and more frequent hand cleaning while out.
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#3 of 40 Old 05-02-2007, 12:11 AM
 
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I would choose vaxes based on risk assessment of each disease and vax. Since this vax is so new I couldn't possibly decide if it's a good choice or not. I stay away from new vaccines.

-Angela
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#4 of 40 Old 05-02-2007, 12:18 AM
 
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And,the rotavirus vax has a notoriously bad track record. Remember rotashield? :Puke I'll take some diarhhea,thanks.
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#5 of 40 Old 05-02-2007, 11:06 AM
 
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From the Vaccine Information Statement (VIS):

Children are slightly (1-3%) more likely to have mild, temporary diarrhea or vomiting within 7 days after getting a dose of rotavirus vaccine than children who have not gotten the vaccine.

In other words, a child has a better chance of getting rotavirus after each live dose of RotaTeq series. In fact, the CDC recently stated:

The most frequently reported adverse events for RotaTeq are diarrhea (27%) and vomiting (26.5%).

FTR, providers are reporting a lot more than the "mild, temporary diarrhea and vomitting" mentioned on the VIS. Infants are getting full blown rotavirus and bloody stool, which is another common adverse reaction. Additionally, this is a live, oral vaccine which sheds. That means the virus can shed in the stool and infect other people if the parent/caregiver does not properly wash their hands after each diaper change.

This is a thread with links and information regarding RotaTeq VAERS reports (reactions):http://www.mothering.com/discussions...hlight=rotateq

The doctor will probably quote off the rotavirus vaccine Vaccine Information Sheet (VIS) they're required to give you before the vaccine's administration. The is what the CDC and ped's use in order to scaremonger parents, but I'm going to put these figures into perspective:

• more than 400,000 doctor visits
• more than 200,000 emergency room visits
• 55,000 to 70,000 hospitalizations
• 20 deaths

There are approx. four (4) million children children born each year in the United States . . . and another few million under the age of five. Almost every child will get rotavirus by time they reach the age of five. Rotavirus can range from mild to severe.

These figures I have bulleted are not the least bit impressive, particularly the number of "doctor visits." Millions of children visit the doctor's office for colds and ear infections alone. Parents bring their kids in to the doctor's office for EVERYTHING, so touting the number of doctor visits is pretty lame, but an effective manipulation.

The rotavirus emergency room visits are equally unimpressive and manipulative since millions of parents routinely use the ER as their "doctor's office," including those parents of children with rotavirus.

And now for the the 55,000 rotavirus hospitalization figure: not too impressive when there are about 500,000 children hospitalized each year in the U.S. due to asthma alone.

FTR, the children who typically get hospitalized are the ones who are dehydrated.

The CDC even uses worldwide mortality figures in order to scaremonger because in un/underdeveloped countries, children die of diarrhea-related illness by the hundreds of thousands. The reason why they die, but hundreds of thousands do not die in developed countries? Malnourishment, poor sanitary conditions and dehydration.
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#6 of 40 Old 05-02-2007, 07:59 PM
 
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If you really look closely at the manufacturer's information, they really market it to decrease rota related hospitalizations/ER visits, not deaths. So that's something to keep in mind - the end marker isn't death. I haven't seen anything yet indicating a huge danger from the vaccine but my perception of that I'm sure varies a lot from other's. I wouldn't be at all surprised to see it added to daycare requirements in the future.
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#7 of 40 Old 05-02-2007, 09:30 PM
 
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Originally Posted by amnesiac View Post
I wouldn't be at all surprised to see it added to daycare requirements in the future.

Historically, all vaccines making onto the recommended list ultimately become mandated for daycare/school entry.

The only thing that's stopping a state from mandating the rotavirus vaccine for daycare entry right now is the "RotaShield factor." Once it's been around for a little while, the first states will begin mandating it for daycare.
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#8 of 40 Old 05-03-2007, 03:20 PM
 
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I don't plan to get the Rotavirus vaccine for any of my future children. They didn't ever mention it with my ds (he's 15 months), and he was fine. (Even if they had pushed it, I wouldn't have gotten it - it's too new, and I would worry way more about the chance of intussuception from the vaccine than the chance of bad diarrhea.) *shrug*

Anyway, if your baby is breastfed you have very little to worry about from rotavirus. I believe that almost all of the babies who end up hospitalized with diarrhea are formula fed.

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#9 of 40 Old 05-04-2007, 01:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I read those figures as well, and it's so dumb. LongIsland has an excellent point about the doctor visits. Hello!! well-baby checkups!! Ever heard of them? Sheesh. You go in for your well-baby checkup, you mention he has diarrhea, and the doc finds out it's rotavirus. Would you have taken your child in to see the doctor with just the diarhea and a mild fever? Maybe not. But you were there for your "well baby exam", so you bring it up...naturally.

**sigh**

We've decided not to give the vaccine for three reasons:
1. It's too new, and that doesn't sit well with us.
2. The sickening results of the last rotavirus vaccine
3. It's unnecessary for all children to take it.

I'm definitely going to look into those adverse reactions and the shedding factor. Didn't even consider that. Interesting - as parents, we would generally say we're vaccinating to prevent getting something...not vaccinating to GIVE you something. Ugh!!
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#10 of 40 Old 05-06-2007, 12:28 PM
 
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My dd had rotovirus at Christmas (she was 16 1/2 months old) and it was AWFUL. It isn't "just diarrhea", it was diarrhea 15+ times a day, a fever and vomitting. This went on for 5 full days, and then a few more days of lethargy and not eating well. My dd spent the week sleeping or crying. I am so happy she was still nursing (and still is) because otherwise I KNOW we would have been in the hospital for at least a couple days. We did end up taking her to the ER on Christmas because she had gotten incredibly lethargic and wasn't peeing. And since she was mainly nursing, I had no idea how much liquids she was getting in. She ended up not being severely dehydrated though. And as soon as we got home from the hospital she let loose of her completely full bladder.

My niece had it at 2 1/2 years old and ended up in the hospital for 4 days.

So, I personally, am very afraid of it! But, not everyone has as bad of a reaction to it.

But, with all this said, I'm afraid of the vaccine given what happened with the first one and what I'm reading about the current one, so we'll be passing for our son if it's offered. I haven't heard them mention it yet at our ped.
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#11 of 40 Old 05-06-2007, 12:35 PM
 
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My dd is 4...... she and I had rotavirus last week.... lasted 4 days, it was miserable. BUT..... we lived through it!!! If you can be a mom who is diligent to keep your kids hydrated (key), it is doable. It is inconvenient, but doable.

NOT worth the risks of the vaccine....... coming from a RN. (with pediatric experience)
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#12 of 40 Old 05-06-2007, 07:04 PM
 
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AAANNNNDDDDD.... should be mentioned again- it's a live vaccine. So if you are truly scared of the disease, don't give the vax because you chance giving it to your kid that way....

-Angela
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#13 of 40 Old 05-07-2007, 02:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by beana's mommy View Post
My dd had rotovirus at Christmas (she was 16 1/2 months old) and it was AWFUL. It isn't "just diarrhea", it was diarrhea 15+ times a day, a fever and vomitting. This went on for 5 full days, and then a few more days of lethargy and not eating well. My dd spent the week sleeping or crying. I am so happy she was still nursing (and still is) because otherwise I KNOW we would have been in the hospital for at least a couple days. We did end up taking her to the ER on Christmas because she had gotten incredibly lethargic and wasn't peeing. And since she was mainly nursing, I had no idea how much liquids she was getting in. She ended up not being severely dehydrated though. And as soon as we got home from the hospital she let loose of her completely full bladder.

My niece had it at 2 1/2 years old and ended up in the hospital for 4 days.

So, I personally, am very afraid of it! But, not everyone has as bad of a reaction to it.

But, with all this said, I'm afraid of the vaccine given what happened with the first one and what I'm reading about the current one, so we'll be passing for our son if it's offered. I haven't heard them mention it yet at our ped.
Yours is the kind of experience that the drug company is using as scare tactics into getting parents to vaccinate against it. They say that there's no telling which children will have a serious case of it, and here's what happens when it's a serious case [insert YOUR story here!].

They list the symptoms (diarrhea and vomiting, among other things) of rotavirus.
Then they list the side-effects of the vaccine (diarrhea and vomiting, among other things).

HELLO!!! DUH!
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#14 of 40 Old 05-07-2007, 03:20 PM
 
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My DD had rotavirus at 22 months, and ended up in the hospital for 2 days with dehydration. The vomiting and diarrhea were really really bad, but I still wouldn't get the new vaccine. The biggest problem with rotavirus is dehydration, and as long as you stay on top of that, and get IV fluids if necessary, it's highly unlikely your child would die from it.

And it's not true that only formula fed babies end up hospitalized. My daughter never had any formula, and was still breastfeeding when she had rotavirus, and she was still knocked out pretty hard by it. During the worst of it, she couldn't keep down anything, not water, not breastmilk. Hence the dehydration.
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#15 of 40 Old 05-07-2007, 03:29 PM
 
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I'd be curious to see the stats on the testing and approval and when it was added to the schedule side by side for both this new one and the old rotoshield that was pulled. Just curious say this was tested and approved as opposed to the last one, how fast did they approve it, how fast was it put on the schedule for each.

I'm too lazy to do the homework though as I probably just don't see a reason to give it to my children. I refuse to vax infants anyway.

Mightymoo - Mom to DD (6) and DS (4)
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#16 of 40 Old 05-08-2007, 01:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I know a friend of mine (she's completely anti-vax) told me that her baby was premature (this was in Nov. 2005), and they said she was at increased risk for rotavirus so she "qualifies for this brand new vaccine!" like they won something. She laughed and said, "You're not using my child as a guinea pig."

What I didn't realize when we had this discussion, and came to remember later on was that this was before the vaccine was even approved by the FDA in 2006!!

Is this typical? Do they really test vaccines like this before approval on premature babies???!!!

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#17 of 40 Old 05-08-2007, 02:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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OMG - I'm going through VAERS. So far, what I am seeing is really quite scary.

Reports of the following after Rotavirus Vaccine:

Stopped eating
Loose Stools
Colitis
Listlessness
Lethargy
Stomach/Abdominal Pain and Cramping
Intestinal Function Disorder
Dehydration
Intussusception
Intussusception requiring Surgery

Bloody Stool
Respiratory Difficulties (Stopped breathing / Trouble Breathing)
Mucousy Stool
Diarrhea
Fever
Vomiting
Rectal Prolapse
Irritability
Hospitalization
Tested Positive for Rotavirus
Gastroenteritis
Inconsolable screaming / crying
Insomnia
Painful blisters in the mouth
Shock
Someone in the family caught rotavirus after child received the vaccine
Nurse who administered vaccine had vomiting and diarrhea & was hospitalized


I'm collecting the numbers as well. It'll take some time.
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#18 of 40 Old 05-09-2007, 11:59 AM
 
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Our pediatrician is very pro-vax and even she advises AGAINST the rotavirus vaccine.

She mailed an official statement to all parents of the children she sees telling us why she does not recommend giving this vaccine. Basically, she said that due to the fact that there were severe, life-threatening complications associated with the other Rotavirus vaccine that was pulled off the market, she will not recommend this vaccine until it has been out at least 5 years and has proven to be "safe". She told me that she thinks this vaccine is too similar to the old one that was pulled to be comfortable giving it to her patients. She also does not recommend the HPV vaccine because of the serious flaws in safety testing.

I worked in a daycare and was exposed to rotavirus on a number of occassions, ds was still nursing when I worked there and never had any tummy troubles. Probiotics offer the best protection against intestinal pathogens.

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#19 of 40 Old 05-09-2007, 11:24 PM
 
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DD had one dose of it. It sheds in the dipes, so my whole family got rotovirus. I had dealt with it before, when I worked in daycare, but no where outside of that.

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#20 of 40 Old 05-14-2007, 01:57 PM
 
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I'm a pediatric nurse and I see rotavirus cases in the hospital a good amount of the time. The real issue that the gov't and parents have with rotavirus is that small children tend to get put in the hospital with it so the doc/nurses can make sure they remain hydrated. Dehydration is the main cause of death in children who die of rotavirus due to the diarrhea it causes. IMO a watchful parent whose child gets rotavirus can usually adequately provide care at home with administration of breastmilk/formula and pedialyte. If the child absolutely refuses to drink hospitalization maybe necessary in order to get IV fluids. The gov't and parents like the vaccine because it will prevent hospitalization thus the stress it puts on the health care system & the loss of productivity from the parents not working while their child is sick.

If you think you would be able to stay at home and be vigilant to keep your child hydrated and know when to call the doctor, and be willing and have the resources (i.e. insurance) to go to the hospital I would say the vaccine is not worth it.
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#21 of 40 Old 05-16-2007, 01:14 AM
 
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I have cared for two children who had rotovirus. I think the issue that needs to be discussed is prevention not vaccination. Rotovirus is caused mainly by unsanitary conditions-changing of diapers and not washing hands and then ingesting the virus. My eldest was 16 months when she contracted rotovirus at daycare. She was hospitalized for 3 days because of dehydration. My cousin (who I helped care for)was 6 months old and was inpatient in the NICU due to premature birth (born at 28 weeks) and a heart defect. She contracted the virus in the NICU. This illness can be avoided by washing your hands.
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#22 of 40 Old 05-21-2007, 11:45 PM
 
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i haven't really looked into this one yet, it wasn't offered to DD as she's 21 months old. but i did want to chime in and say that vomiting and diarrhea so severe as to require hospitalization is nothing to dismiss. when i weigh this vaccine with DC #2 (who isn't in the works yet), i'll consider those 55,000 - 70,000 hospitalizations very seriously.
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#23 of 40 Old 05-22-2007, 05:14 PM
 
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I don't know why death is considered the ONLY bad thing that can happen. Of course it is the worst thing that can happen. But my godson spent a month in Children's hospital with rotavirus and complications ensuing, and I can tell you... spending a month in the hospital is a Pretty Bad Thing. Driving an hour out of my way to get clothes for my girlfriend who was covered from head to toe in puke and diahrrhea (which, btw, both looked exactly the same) was also pretty bad. Ick.

That's funny that a pediatrician is perfectly fine letting a vax be experimented on "everyone else's kids."
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#24 of 40 Old 08-01-2007, 07:25 PM
 
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When my son was an infant, his pedi asked us to participate in a new study of the Rotavirus vaccine. I believe Merck was the one doing it? (that could be totally wrong, so don't bet my life on it!) We were given a journal each week. Everytime he was given the liquid (orally) we had to write down any side effects. Thankfully, he never had any. We found out about a year later they had given him the placebo. I remember asking the nurse what the placebo was and she said "ya know, like sugar and water." I later found out that was a blatant lie. They used many other chemicals to mimick the vaccine in the placebo, of which could have been dangerous in themselves.

None of my kids will get any vaccinations from this point on, including RotaTeq. (sp)

Jamie
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#25 of 40 Old 08-01-2007, 08:01 PM
 
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For your school question -- probably not.
Why?
HIB is on the pedi list, but not on schools here in VA. WHY? Age appropriateness. The HIB vax is not intended for children over 5 yrs of age at which point their bodies are probably able to fight the disease naturally or they are just not at risk for catching it.
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#26 of 40 Old 08-03-2007, 12:11 PM
 
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Our pediatrician is very pro-vax and even she advises AGAINST the rotavirus vaccine.
Same here; our ped is pro-vax but she advises against this one.
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#27 of 40 Old 08-03-2007, 12:27 PM
 
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#28 of 40 Old 08-05-2007, 09:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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When my son was an infant, his pedi asked us to participate in a new study of the Rotavirus vaccine. I believe Merck was the one doing it? (that could be totally wrong, so don't bet my life on it!) We were given a journal each week. Everytime he was given the liquid (orally) we had to write down any side effects. Thankfully, he never had any. We found out about a year later they had given him the placebo. I remember asking the nurse what the placebo was and she said "ya know, like sugar and water." I later found out that was a blatant lie. They used many other chemicals to mimick the vaccine in the placebo, of which could have been dangerous in themselves.

None of my kids will get any vaccinations from this point on, including RotaTeq. (sp)

Jamie
Didn't I read your story someplace else?? I can't remember where, but I know I read your story before.
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#29 of 40 Old 08-05-2007, 09:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't know why death is considered the ONLY bad thing that can happen. Of course it is the worst thing that can happen. But my godson spent a month in Children's hospital with rotavirus and complications ensuing, and I can tell you... spending a month in the hospital is a Pretty Bad Thing. Driving an hour out of my way to get clothes for my girlfriend who was covered from head to toe in puke and diahrrhea (which, btw, both looked exactly the same) was also pretty bad. Ick.

That's funny that a pediatrician is perfectly fine letting a vax be experimented on "everyone else's kids."
Death most definitely isn't the only bad thing that can happen with these diseases. There are many things that can happen with any disease. Secondary infections and the like.

It's pretty rare, in my understanding, that what happened to your child happened at all. But I can understand why that experience would cause someone to think differently about a vaccine against this virus. The only problem is that so many people are getting rotavirus from the vaccine and ending up in the hospital with intususception. That's scary too.

As with anything, we all have to weight the benefits vs. the potential risks. That's a decision each parent has to make for their own children.

Live viruses and diseases make me nervous, personally.
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#30 of 40 Old 08-06-2007, 02:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have cared for two children who had rotovirus. I think the issue that needs to be discussed is prevention not vaccination. Rotovirus is caused mainly by unsanitary conditions-changing of diapers and not washing hands and then ingesting the virus. My eldest was 16 months when she contracted rotovirus at daycare. She was hospitalized for 3 days because of dehydration. My cousin (who I helped care for)was 6 months old and was inpatient in the NICU due to premature birth (born at 28 weeks) and a heart defect. She contracted the virus in the NICU. This illness can be avoided by washing your hands.

In a pamphlet that talks about rotavirus (made my the vaccine manufacturers), they say that handwashing will NOT prevent the spread of the virus. It says that with most other viruses and illnesses, handwashing greatly reduces the spread of disease, but with rotavirus, that's not the case.

Has anyone else read this?
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