Worried about measles in NYC - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-10-2014, 06:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi all

I realize there's already a few threads on the current measles outbreaks, I hope you don't mind that I'm starting another one.
I live in Manhattan with my 20 month old, completely unvaccinated and medicated, daughter. I usually feel very confident about our decision not to vaxx, but reading about it, media and list serves, are starting to make me worry. We take the subway around, we are around lotsa people all the time.
I just read that 90% of suceptible people, who are exposed to measles, will get it. If she was older I wouldn't worry so much.
She still fb a lot and about 1-2 months ago I started giving her sodium ascorbate daily in her water. I also got some vitamin A drops from Klaire labs, but so far I have not given her any.
So far the outbreaks have happened much further north from us, but I'm sure it will come down here soon enough.
Is there anything else I could/should do? What would you more experienced mothers do in my situation?
Thank you for reading this, I appreciate any input you may have.
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Old 03-10-2014, 08:45 PM
 
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Hi all

I realize there's already a few threads on the current measles outbreaks, I hope you don't mind that I'm starting another one.
I live in Manhattan with my 20 month old, completely unvaccinated and medicated, daughter. I usually feel very confident about our decision not to vaxx, but reading about it, media and list serves, are starting to make me worry. We take the subway around, we are around lotsa people all the time.
I just read that 90% of suceptible people, who are exposed to measles, will get it. If she was older I wouldn't worry so much.
She still fb a lot and about 1-2 months ago I started giving her sodium ascorbate daily in her water. I also got some vitamin A drops from Klaire labs, but so far I have not given her any.
So far the outbreaks have happened much further north from us, but I'm sure it will come down here soon enough.
Is there anything else I could/should do? What would you more experienced mothers do in my situation?
Thank you for reading this, I appreciate any input you may have.

 

Hi, Stella, welcome aboard!

You write that she is medicated?  What medication is she on?  And what does fb mean?  (She's not on Facebook already, is she?)

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Old 03-10-2014, 08:58 PM
 
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LOL, facebooking toddlers, it's all the new rage! But seriously, depending upon your antibodies you might have less to worry about.  If you ever had measles then you pass on much more antibodies than if you were vaxxed and it would have waned by now, but still something is better than nothing.  Nursing in general helps because anything your LO comes into contact with, your body will produce antibodies for her the second she latches on thus your immune system will do much of the dirty work for her.

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Old 03-11-2014, 05:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Haha, it's supposed to be unmedicated. I just mean she's never had Tylenol etc.
and fb is of course bf, breastfeeding. This is why you don't post from your phone.

I had the MMR when I was 12. A few years later I had mumps. And when I was 4, rubella. Unfortunately, I never had the measles.
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Old 03-11-2014, 05:38 AM
 
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Is there some sort of guarantee the measles is going to 'come down the line'?   Seems to me to be  more of a msm pitch for everyone to get vaxed....in reality, how likely is it to 'come down the line'?  Imo, not very likely at all.   Why do I think this? Because of the big pockets of unvaccinated populations around the USA, and there are no 'outbreaks' happening all over the place..even if there is some pockets of whatever disease, you'll find the vaccination rates in those who contracted it to be higher.  My son is in Denver where there is a whooping cough surge at the moment...am i worried for my son, 17yrs old?  Honestly, no, I'm not.  Whooping cough has supposedly been going around now for 3 mos out there and is happening in the vaccinated population.   Denver and Boulder have notoriously low vaccination rates,  and where's all the outbreaks?  Seems to me mainstream media just really likes to make mountains out of molehills to further someone else's agenda, especially when it comes to 'disease'.  

Fearmonger the masses into compliance. 

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Old 03-11-2014, 05:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Emmy, thanks for your reply. You're probably right. I just get nervous as Measles is so highly contagious. It's just so packed here. Maybe I would feel differently in a more suburban area.
There's definitely fear mongering going on and I try to keep that in mind. I'm just concerned cause she's still so young.
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Old 03-11-2014, 05:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Also, I'm worried because so many people are running out and getting the vaccine. Doesn't that just help spread it? It's a live vaccine, right. UGH!!!
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Old 03-11-2014, 06:39 AM
 
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Emmy, thanks for your reply. You're probably right. I just get nervous as Measles is so highly contagious. It's just so packed here. Maybe I would feel differently in a more suburban area.
There's definitely fear mongering going on and I try to keep that in mind. I'm just concerned cause she's still so young.

It's also helpful to remember that there are many, many viruses that are extremely contagious too. and the flumist, which is a live virus, can spread the flu..Did you worry about the flu spreading to you?  What about rhinovirus ( common cold)?  Stomach virus? All those are extremely contagious as well.  And they may cause just as much damage as measles, imo.  The best thing to do is limit exposure, up your vitamins,  healthy eating habits and be wary of your environment.  

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Old 03-11-2014, 08:01 AM
 
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^^ Yes.
I would practice extra good hand washing as well. Not like OCD hand washing, but every time you get home, its a good idea to wash your and your DD's hands.

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Old 03-11-2014, 08:50 AM
 
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I don't think 20 months is too young to get measles. I wouldn't worry at all. And it wouldn't hurt to start giving her a drop of the vitamin A a few times a week.

 

If she got measles now, she would probably get lasting immunity from it, as the measles portion of the MMR vaccine works best if given at 18 months or later. And of course natural infection gives vastly better immunity than the vaccine.

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Old 03-11-2014, 09:37 AM
 
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I don't have much advice but just wanted to say that we are in the same boat.
I have a 15 months old unvaxed boy at home (we live in Manhattan). He is home with a nanny, but we do take him to classes and playspaces daily so he is exposed to a lot of kids. 
For now, I am not considering giving him the vaccine as it still scares me more than the actual disease. 

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Old 03-11-2014, 11:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Once again, thank you all for replying. Makes me feel so much better.
3lilchunklins, we already practice good hand hygiene, so hopefully that will help. She has been teething though and putting everything in her mouth. Here's to building a good immune system, haha :-)
Ma2two, I just read that babies and young kids didn't fare as well as adolescents and that, coupled with the potential side effects freaked me out a little. I do realize that the average 20 month old in this country is probably no longer breastfeeding and might also be in daycare. My dd is home with me still.
I thought about giving her a little vitamin A. I've just been scared as I believe that's one of the vitamins you can get too much of. I have to find a reliable source to read more about the dosage etc. So far I have been trying to up her intake of vitamin A through food in stead.

EllaD, I'm terrified of the vaccine as well. I'm on a list serve where people are talking about the outbreak and some people are wanting to get their 4 month old babies vaccinated.
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Old 03-11-2014, 12:00 PM
 
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In one study, 10 month olds with severe measles were given 200,000 IU vitamin A (equivalent to about 40 of the Klaire Labs drops) in one day, and then another 200,000 IU the next day, "with no clinically apparent adverse effects." http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJM199007193230304#t=article+Methods.  I know your daughter doesn't have measles, but that is just to point out that one drop of 5,000 IU is comparatively very low. I think since you're worried, doing something instead of nothing will make you feel better, and I'm sure one drop once a week would be fine for any child. Edit: I see you are doing something, by giving her foods high in vitamin A. If that's enough to make you feel better, that's fine.

 

P.s. I think anyone thinking of giving MMR to a 4 month old needs to have his or her head examined.

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Old 03-11-2014, 12:05 PM
 
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Once again, thank you all for replying. Makes me feel so much better.
3lilchunklins, we already practice good hand hygiene, so hopefully that will help. She has been teething though and putting everything in her mouth. Here's to building a good immune system, haha :-)
Ma2two, I just read that babies and young kids didn't fare as well as adolescents and that, coupled with the potential side effects freaked me out a little. I do realize that the average 20 month old in this country is probably no longer breastfeeding and might also be in daycare. My dd is home with me still.
I thought about giving her a little vitamin A. I've just been scared as I believe that's one of the vitamins you can get too much of. I have to find a reliable source to read more about the dosage etc. So far I have been trying to up her intake of vitamin A through food in stead.

EllaD, I'm terrified of the vaccine as well. I'm on a list serve where people are talking about the outbreak and some people are wanting to get their 4 month old babies vaccinated.

 

You do know FEAR is HIGHLY contagious? 

 

One needs FEAR when they really understand the effectiveness of the vaccines they are vaccinating for-IMO

 

also IMO, I would get off that list that you are on


 

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Old 03-11-2014, 12:44 PM
 
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My youngest had measles at age 8 months. I was breastfeeding him, but not exclusively, as I was working full time. It was a very mild case of measles. He is 21 today - and healthy, tyvm.

 

FWIW, the over-educated intern at the pediatrician's office was not able to properly identify his case of measles, but the older experienced pediatrician did diagnose him.  My niece had measles at age 15 months - the vax was given at 18-24 months at that time, and the intern at her ped's office was not able to properly diagnose her case either - wonder how often that happens!   It was because of this outbreak that the MMR was moved down to 12 months - and still my son would have been too young for it.


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Old 03-11-2014, 12:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much, Ma2tow. Exactly what I was looking for.
And yes, I do feel better knowing I'm doing something.

Serenbat, I think even considering giving your 4 month old the MMR is crazy. The more these people talk about the vaccine and what their pediatricians are recommending, the better I feel about our decisions for our daughter. But it's still very nice and comforting to know that I'm not alone in thinking this way. Like I said, I think everybody running out and getting the vaccine is a big part of what's spreading it in the first place.

I've never really worried about the flu so much. I guess because I know what it is and I've had it. The measles are a bit more "exotic" these days, so it just sounds scarier. I wouldn't actually mind if she got a mild case.

My mom lives in Europe and when we were growing up she had a book about all the diseases that kids get. I asked her for it, as I remember it was very matter of factly and not fear inducing. Think it will more helpful than all the books today, that just urge you to run to the dr and get injected with toxins.

Edit: autocorrect typos
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Old 03-11-2014, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Apple juice, thank you so much for sharing. Makes me feel much better to hear your story.

I've heard too that younger drs lack of experience diagnosing vpds is what makes them so rare. They simply don't know when they are looking at a case of measles for instance, ergo it's not counted in the statistics. Someone else could explain this better, haha.eyesroll.gif
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Old 03-11-2014, 01:07 PM
 
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I had measles as a child also, so I should have had enough immunities to pass on to him.

 

As for missing cases of so-called vaccine preventable diseases, you should know it costs time and $ in processing health department reports and insurance forms to verify and report these cases.

 

Nine of ten pertussis deaths in CA were in babies too young for the vaccine and because the doctors did not properly diagnose and treat the cases of pertussis that presented to them in the ERs.


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Old 03-12-2014, 07:55 AM
 
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Ma2two, I just read that babies and young kids didn't fare as well as adolescents and that, coupled with the potential side effects freaked me out a little.
 

Interesting.  I had thought school age kids fared the best with measles and adolescent fared not as well.  Do you have a link for a lazy poster? I will return the favour sometime, lol.

 

In other news, there are 2 cases of measles about one hour from me. I am not panicking at all, but I am keeping an eye on things.  If the numbers get past a certain point (and I don't know what that is!)  I might start vitamin a supplementation.  2 of my kids are picky eaters, and while I suspect their Vit.A levels are ok, I would err on the side of caution and supplement. 

 

The people in my house range from mid 40's down to 11.  While DH, Ds and 1 have all had one MMR, the girls have had none.  I am not sure I trust the vaccine to be very effective anyways.  


There is a battle of two wolves inside us.  One is good and the other is evil.  The wolf that wins is the one you feed.

 

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Old 03-12-2014, 10:49 AM
 
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Kathy, wish I could find the CDC link I was looking at the other day, maybe better luck when I'm at home, but I did read something saying under age 5 they are at higher risk for complications but they didn't' elaborate much on what that would entail, just that a certain population would have immunity (pre-vaccine era) between 5-9 and something ranging upwards of 95% would have had exposure and immunity by 15, then after that point there was increase for risk factors.  From what I remember reading the incidence in that below 5 range was also very low comparatively speaking so they'd have to first be a portion of that very small chance of even getting it and then only a small portion of those had issues.  I'll see if I can retrace it in my browser history when I get home!

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Old 03-12-2014, 11:18 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I got it wrong, it said kids under 5 and adults older than 20 are more likely to have complications:

http://www.babycenter.com/0_measles_1417820.bc?page=2

Other less likely but possible difficulties include pneumonia, meningitis, encephalitis (inflammation of the brain), and — very rarely — other serious brain complications. Complications are more likely in children younger than 5 years old and adults 20 and older.

Not at site I usually use, but I was just frantically google searching to learn about the symptoms.
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Old 03-12-2014, 11:36 AM
 
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Take a look at this graph.  I think it is a bit scarier than it seems, as I suspect some measles goes unreported.  The table uses data from 1987-2000.  So going by the table, it does look like measles is safe (relatively speaking)  in teens.  That is a bit of a "phew" moment for me.  

 

Under 5's do not fare as well as older kids and teens, but they are still better than adults.

 

If you go to the link I got the table from, they talk about atypical measles which would have affected people in the table  (artificially inflating some adult and even teen numbers of complications?) , but will not affect our children.  My husband was born in 68, though, so he might have received the formalin-inactivated vaccine if it was used in Canada in 68).  The article is an interesting read.  

 

http://jid.oxfordjournals.org/content/189/Supplement_1/S4.long

 

" Atypical measles occurred in children who received formalin-inactivated (killed) measles vaccine that was in use in the United States from 1963 to 1968 [34]. These children developed high fever, a rash that was most prominent on the extremities and often included petechiae, and a high rate of pneumonitis [3436]. Recent studies in monkeys indicate that this illness was caused by antigen-antibody immune complexes resulting from incomplete maturation of the antibody response to the vaccine [3738]."


There is a battle of two wolves inside us.  One is good and the other is evil.  The wolf that wins is the one you feed.

 

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Old 03-12-2014, 11:45 AM
 
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That's interesting - the over 30 crowd actually seems to fare BETTER than the 20-29!  I wonder why that span in the 20's is more at risk?  Maybe (just guessing here!) it's the most common time for reproduction and with those changes in the body you become more susceptible to complications? That's really fascinating....maybe because I'm now in the 30+ category I can feel safer if DD were to somehow contract measles and expose myself and DH!

 

Now that I look again, the 30+ overall fares better than even the 10-19s - slightly higher deaths and a handful more pneumonia but all the others and overall complications are less.  Sure there's a difference in the number in each range who contracted measles, but still....

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Old 03-12-2014, 11:47 AM - Thread Starter
 
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If I'm reading it right, it seems that "only" .3% of kids under 5 years of age died from measles?
Also, like I said, I guess when they talk about complications in people, they refer to the average kid on the SAD. I would guess most moms on here breastfeed full term and generally feed their kids a healthier diet. Or maybe I'm just trying to comfort myself.
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Old 03-12-2014, 11:48 AM
 
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At first glance the under 5 numbers do look scary, but the breakdown is helpful. Looks like hospitialization (for what, though?), and diarrhea are the main complications.
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Old 03-12-2014, 12:06 PM
 
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Pneumonia and encephalitis are complications of measles.

 

It is my experience that giving children OTC meds while they are coping with regular childhood diseases as measles, complicates the process of the disease and can cause other problems while an otherwise healthy child will recover unremarkably.


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Old 03-12-2014, 12:29 PM
 
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That's interesting - the over 30 crowd actually seems to fare BETTER than the 20-29!  I wonder why that span in the 20's is more at risk?  Maybe (just guessing here!) it's the most common time for reproduction and with those changes in the body you become more susceptible to complications? That's really fascinating....maybe because I'm now in the 30+ category I can feel safer if DD were to somehow contract measles and expose myself and DH!

 

Now that I look again, the 30+ overall fares better than even the 10-19s - slightly higher deaths and a handful more pneumonia but all the others and overall complications are less.  Sure there's a difference in the number in each range who contracted measles, but still....

The  table was based on figures from 1987-2000, so birth cohort for a 30 year old:  1957-1970.  Many from that time period had been exposed to measles, even if they did not develop a full blown case, and subsequent cases might be lighter. The link from my last post (if I am reading it right) seems to confirm this:

 

"Milder forms of measles occur in children and adults with preexisting partial immunity. Infants who have low levels of passively acquired maternal antibody and persons who receive blood products that contain antibody often have subclinical infections or minimal symptoms that may not be diagnosed as measles [2426]. Vaccination protects >90% of recipients against disease, but after exposure to natural measles, some vaccinees develop boosts in antibody associated with mild symptoms and may have rash with little or no fever or nonspecific respiratory symptoms [2732]. 


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Old 03-12-2014, 01:21 PM
 
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I am surprised that SSPE has not come up as a complication for under 2 y/o.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subacute_sclerosing_panencephalitis

 

In Germany the media had a phase where it was portrayed that every child under 2 that had contracted measles would also develop SSPE. The typical scaremongering to increase vaccine rates in my opinion. In these articles the parents of the affected children were even always able to name the exact person that spread the disease -> some unvaccinated child with measles in the peds office. Does anybody have official stats for the US on SSPE as a complication?


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Old 03-12-2014, 03:03 PM
 
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Ok this is the link I was looking for earlier, it's out of the CDC pinkbook, has some percentages and numbers on there: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/meas.pdf

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Old 03-12-2014, 09:43 PM
 
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I am surprised that SSPE has not come up as a complication for under 2 y/o.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subacute_sclerosing_panencephalitis

 

 

from the CDC pink book:

 

"Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) is a rare degen- erative central nervous system disease believed to be due to persistent measles virus infection of the brain. Onset occurs an average of 7 years after measles (range 1 month–27 years), and occurs in five to ten cases per million reported measles cases."

 

It seems really rare.


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