Meningitis (why oh why does this bother me!!!) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Old 02-16-2010, 12:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It seems that I always get on a kick when it comes to Meningitis. I have researched it for years now since my first child was born 4 years ago!!! And I still STILL get worried about it.

I have had ENORMOUS pressure from the pedi lately... to vax my 2 youngest sons (2 years old, and 8 months) it actually got to where he BEGGED me to give them a vaccine, saying "come on, just one... COME ON.. Please!" I was so freaked out, like GET AWAY FROM MY KIDS PSYCHO!

He goes to say that with ANY fever they get AT ALL they will do a spinal. And that if they get Meningitis they WILL DIE.

FACTS:
I breastfed my 4 year old until she was 23 months. I breastfed my 2 year old until he was 13 months, and I am currently breastfeeding my 8 month old. I did read that breastfed babies have less of a chance of contracting HIB.

All 3 of my children are still home... none of them attend a daycare, and my daughter will be attending a preschool this fall (she will be 5).

We had a child in our town last year have Meningitis (he was FULLY vaccinated, on time on the schedule...) and he is severely impaired now neurologically. His parents were told that he had the flu, and he was sick for weeks before they found out it was Meningitis.

I guess my worry is that I JUST WORRY about this all the time. I know that if I vaccinate them from it, they can still get it. I know that if I dont vaccinate them with it, they can still get it.

I know alot of moms will remember me on here.... It has taken me years to get to where I am. I was a very scared, parinoid mother after my daughter had a reaction to her vaccines (seizures, and then intercranial bleed.) I literally couldnt sleep at night because I lived in fear of EVERYTHING. With my daughters medical problems and how much we lived in Hospitals and saw doctors it just didnt help me with the things I witnessed, and were told. The biggest fear was Tetanus for me. I couldnt even let my daughter go outside, because if she got a scrape I was PANICKED! I thought for sure, GREAT she is going to die. I am not in a place like that anymore However, the Meningitis scares me still.

Can you all give me AS much information as possible? I own every single Vaccine book out there, including the red book. But I just need reassurance from other moms... there opinions. Sometimes that helps more!!!!

Thanks so much!

Megan
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#2 of 17 Old 02-16-2010, 01:30 PM
 
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He goes to say that with ANY fever they get AT ALL they will do a spinal. And that if they get Meningitis they WILL DIE.
Run...fast. I would never go to this doctor again.

Not long ago I read an article about a study that found that those (I think this study was in mice) who develop meningitis from three particular bacteria where found to be deficient in something that was essential to the brain barrier's ability to keep those bacteria out. It was recently in the news, perhaps someone knows which study it is.

"It should be a rule in all prophylactic work that no harm should ever be unnecessarily inflicted on a healthy person (Sir Graham Wilson, The Hazards of Immunization, 1967)."
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#3 of 17 Old 02-16-2010, 04:39 PM
 
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Meningitis is scary, no doubt about it, but the answer is not vaccinating.

There are so many strains of bacteria and viruses that can potentally cause meningitis. You would be basically vaxing against 8 if you did HIB and prevnar and another 4 if you did the menactra. So what about the other 90 or so strains?? In fact I think there is enough evidence to strongly suggest that vaccinating for those 12 strains allows other, deadlier more treatment resistant strains to step in and become more prevalent. I also personally don't buy the whole germ theory of disease and agree more with Antoine Bechamps theory that it is more about the terrain than it is about the germ which determines how sick one will become. This is why I concentrate on developing and strengthening DS's immune system. The bottom line is that you cannot vaccinate away all potentially harmful pathogens, although big Pharma will try their hardest. To attempt to do this will have consequences that are unforseen, but potentially devastating IMO. We are already seeing it with the emergence of MRSA and other treatment resistant strains of bacteria.
The story of that neighbor child illustrates the false sense of security that medical professionals and parents have about disease. They assume that if a child is vaccinated up the wazoo, nothing bad can happen. The fact that that child was fully vaccinated prevented those doctors from pursuing a possible meningitis diagnosis. They assumed she couldn't possibly have that as she was vaccinated. What about all the other strains that can lead to it?? A dangerous assumption for sure! I also agree with Emmeline. Ditch that doctor!!!

If the people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny." Thomas Jefferson.

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#4 of 17 Old 02-17-2010, 04:26 PM
 
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I freak out about meningitis too. I have a teenager active in sports and his level of rest is always questionable. I worry more now because I know its his personal state of health (exhausted!) not his vaccination status that dictates whether or not any bacteria will become invasive. SO - you know, worry! That's okay. Know the warning signs of meningitis and don't hesitate to get help if they present. Even if my son were vaccinated - I would still worry because, as Marnica says, the vaxes don't cover a fraction of the strains that can cause meningitis. I am also a firm believer in serotype replacement. Any vaccine I give him will just leave more space for the non-vax strains that normally don't cause problems - and throw off the natural bacterial balance of his body in ways that I certainly can't predict and science doesn't bother to discover with their oh so short term 'trials'.

Your long-term bfing will certainly protect your children from HiB for many years to come. Google the Swedish breast feeding study conducted from 1987-1992 (before widespread HiB vax).
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#5 of 17 Old 02-17-2010, 10:41 PM
 
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I had meningitis 23 years ago when I was in my thirties. I am still here.

Many years ago, my husband's aunt had meningitis as a woman in her thirties also. She lived a long time after that. She was hospitalized for it. She spent a long time in a crowded ward until the doctors decided to test her by ordering a spinal tap. Then she was finally put in isolation. She said she felt so sick and weak, she did not care what any one did to her. However, as soon as she felt better, she signed herself out AMA, and went home. She got well. No problem.

Scaring people into compliance does not work.
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#6 of 17 Old 02-18-2010, 11:23 AM
 
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Originally Posted by miriam View Post
I had meningitis 23 years ago when I was in my thirties. I am still here.

Many years ago, my husband's aunt had meningitis as a woman in her thirties also. She lived a long time after that. She was hospitalized for it. She spent a long time in a crowded ward until the doctors decided to test her by ordering a spinal tap. Then she was finally put in isolation. She said she felt so sick and weak, she did not care what any one did to her. However, as soon as she felt better, she signed herself out AMA, and went home. She got well. No problem.

Scaring people into compliance does not work.
But see that's the problem....it doesn't work on US... On people that have taken the time to educate themselves about the risks/vs the benefits. But on the vast majority of people that are ignorant on the subject, it works beautifully!!!

If the people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny." Thomas Jefferson.

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#7 of 17 Old 02-18-2010, 11:41 AM
 
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I guess my feeling on it (and granted this might be a false logic) is that I was *never* vaccinated for meningitis until middle school - nor was anyone I knew growing up... because it wasn't available. And I mean, I don't even *know* of anyone who had it when I was a kid. Chicken pox? yeah, but cp doesn't scare me. Meningitis is scary but I heard of one girl when i was in high school that had it in another school district so they decided to vax everyone (I was in 7th grade - I remember clearly the age b/c they asked me if I was pregnant and I was so far from thinking about that stuff that I looked at them like they were crazy.) It just doesn't seem like a raging concern to me. And as others have said, there's TONS of other bacteria and viruses that cause it, and vaccinating won't help against those, and may actually encourage those bugs instead of the more treatable ones...

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#8 of 17 Old 02-18-2010, 11:26 PM
 
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I also feel the increase in antibiotics for ear infections over the past 15 years or so contributes to antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria and thus the "need " for vaccines .
I have never known of anyone with meningitis ever and I am 43 years old.

After age 5 -most children have achieved levels of normal colonization of HIB to confer resistance to disease thus levels drop dramatically--per Aviva Jill Romms book Vaccinations.

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#9 of 17 Old 02-20-2010, 02:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I also feel the increase in antibiotics for ear infections over the past 15 years or so contributes to antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria and thus the "need " for vaccines .
I have never known of anyone with meningitis ever and I am 43 years old.

After age 5 -most children have achieved levels of normal colonization of HIB to confer resistance to disease thus levels drop dramatically--per Aviva Jill Romms book Vaccinations.
Well, it was scarey because when I was in the hospital with my daughter another mom was there and had recognized me because we had lived in the same town... I asked why she was there and her son who is 4 had all his vaccines had Meningitis and now is completely impaired! That is the 2nd child THIS year in our county who had Meningitis. One completely vaxed the other not vaxed at all.
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#10 of 17 Old 02-20-2010, 03:11 PM
 
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Meningitis scares me too! It didn't always, though. When my 3 oldest were little, I vaccinated for everything they told me to and I never even knew what they were getting. My oldest was born in 92, so he did receive the hib vaccine along with my other 2 oldest. They did not get prevnar because it was not out yet. I didn't worry about hib because I didn't even know what it was. I didn't worry about pneumoccocal (sp?) because I didn't know what it was. I didn't worry about menicoccal (sp?..sorry!) because I didn't know what it was! My 4th received 2 prevnar before he had a vaccine reaction and the dr told me it was to prevent ear infections...so, I still didn't worry about meningitis. Ignorance is truly bliss!! ) Meningitis worries have consumed me for the past 2 years! I started driving myself crazy! So, I just had to step back and think about this a little bit. I am not comfortable vaxing my kids anymore. I have read and researched and know more than my pediatrician!! It's sad, but true! When my child had a reaction, NOBODY could tell me what was going on with him, but they sure did tell me what it wasn't...VACCINES! I was like, "how do you know this?" I couldn't believe how they would never even entertain the idea and he had neurological stuff happening and he had just had ALL his 4 month vaccines! They called it a developmental glitch in the same breath they said he would stop developing, lose his smile and was having seizures!! It was crazy! A develpmental glitch?? This was a pediatric neurologist??!! They didn't know what was happening to him! I lost trust in them at that moment! I was an advocate for my son and found vitamin b6 and used that instead of tegretol...the heavy duty seizure medication they wanted to put my baby on...turns out they never even really knew he was for sure having seizures! So, all this to say, I stopped vaccinating, but I had been so ingrained that vaccines are life savers and my child will die without them that I lived in constant fear! It was a miserable life. I am just now pulling myself out of it. I am still reading and researching, but I am realizing that their is risk in life!! We make the best decisions we can, but we have no guarantees. We know kids die everyday in automobile accidents, but most of us still drive. We just try to drive safely. Kids drown, but we still take them swimming. I don't know if your a christian, but God is helping me with my fear as it is bondage and I have to pray alot and give my child over to him. I have to make the best decisions I can, but I have to realize that life is risky. I am not sure if this is helping you, and I still worry at times, but I try to boost my kids' immune system, pray for them, feed them nutritious food and live our lives. When I see stories of children that have been harmed by these diseases there are always other stories of children harmed by vaccines. Either way is a gamble and either way has risks. I pray that you find peace about this because it was seriously robbing my joy of parenting. I just realized that I never worried about these diseases when my older kids were little and because there is a vaccine and I am more aware, it opens the door for fear.
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#11 of 17 Old 02-20-2010, 03:34 PM
 
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ok, sorry that was so long! But, I also wanted to add that the B6 did help my son and he never regressed...thank God!! He is a normal 8 yo boy now! ) Children's hospital never admitted that the b6 helped him, although, his "seizure like" activity stopped when we started it. They said it was a coincidence. These doctors did not seem to believe in vitamins, etc.

Also, I wanted to say that I will never know if his vaccines caused his head dropping, neurological episodes. It happened about 10-12 days after his vaccines. I think that is the problem with vaccine reactions, you can almost never "prove" it. I think you would have to rewind time, go back and not give the vaccines and see if the same thing happened anyway. That is impossible to do and I think that is why it is so hard to prove if vaccines have caused certain problems.
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#12 of 17 Old 02-22-2010, 12:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by AurorasMommy View Post
I breastfed my 4 year old until she was 23 months. I breastfed my 2 year old until he was 13 months, and I am currently breastfeeding my 8 month old. I did read that breastfed babies have less of a chance of contracting HIB.
That's awesome. Have you read this?

Quote:
Plasma cells in the mother’s bronchial tree and intestine migrate to the mammary epithelium and produce IgA antibodies specific to antigens in the motherinfant dyad’s immediate surroundings, providing specific protection against pathogens in the mother’s environment.12 In addition, innate immune factors in milk provide protection against infection. Oligosaccharides prevent attachment of common respiratory pathogens, such as Haemophilus influenzae and Streptococcus pneumoniae, to respiratory epithelium, and glycoproteins prevent binding of intestinal pathogens such as Vibrio cholerae, Escherichia coli, and rotavirus.13
WRT meningitis, it is a collection of symptoms... not a disease causing agent in itself. Any number of pathogens or viruses can induce the condition depending on the host's immune response. It scares you, because it happens very close to the brain and can be devastating in a population of people. It probably doesn't help when you see a commercial with a cute 12 year old on a swing, and in the background you hear: "this is what meningitis looks like just 24 hours before it kills a child". Never mind that meningitis isn't a bug or a virus... that is the target of the vaccine.
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#13 of 17 Old 02-23-2010, 01:25 PM
 
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glad I found this thread, the exact reason I came to this forum today. My daughter turned 2 last month and has had no shots to date. I have to admit, I too am scared as well. The fact that it hits so fast is what is so scary to me.

I still nurse her twice a day, she is not in daycare. Of course, we are not total shut ins!
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#14 of 17 Old 02-26-2010, 06:08 PM
 
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Holy Moly, I knew a little girl back in the 70s that got meningitis. No she didn't die. Yes some kids do but it's not a death sentence. I'd so be getting a new Dr.
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#15 of 17 Old 02-26-2010, 06:20 PM
 
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I had meningitis when I was young (5? maybe really young) and I'm fine. I had to stay in the hospital because of hydration issues mostly...but I turned out fine (it was viral BTW and wouldn't have been covered under the vax)

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#16 of 17 Old 02-26-2010, 06:41 PM
 
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Meningitis is inflammation of the meninges the protective layer that surrounds the brain & spinal cord). It can be viral or bacterial. The Menactra vaccine protects against the Meningiococcal bacteria that leads to meningitis & septicemia. This form of meninigitis is VERY aggressive and frequently kills or causes permanent damage.

I selectively vax my kids on a delayed schedule, but I will probably vax for menigiococcal infection since my kids won't be bf anymore. However, if my kids were not in school, I probably would not vax them for it unless they wanted to live in a dorm in college.

I will say that I am slightly biased beacuse I was a pediatric intensive care nurse and saw several cases of m. meningities with bad outcomes, without that experience, my choices might be different.

Wife to M , Mommy to DS aka Captain Obvious  (06/06) and DD aka Lissalot  (03/09, anoxic brain injury)
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#17 of 17 Old 02-28-2010, 03:02 AM
 
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This is a hard one for me also my first is almost fully vaxed minus a hep A and my second had her first round.

It is so hard because my husbands older brother died at 5 from spinal menegitis they were told it was the flu. I don't know if it was one covered by the vax or not but it was not available at the time it came out shortly after and according to his mother her other kids were the first in the state to receive the vax. So it is hard but reading how it really only covers a fraction of it makes me feel a little better.
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