HELP! My husband has shingles and I am trying to figure-out what to do with my un-vaccinated son and school?! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 3 Old 01-09-2012, 12:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My husband found out he has shingles last week.  As soon as we found out he has been on medication and not been in contact with my son.  My son was however in contact with him prior to finding out and I have kept him home from school since we found out.  I'm trying to decide what to do and do not want to draw attention to my son and the fact that he is not vaccinated with the school.  Do I send him to school, as he has no signs of illness currently?  Do I keep him home 21 days, the longest incubation period?  Do I call the school and ask what their policy is?  If anyone has been through this or has any advice or ideas please help!  This has been so stressful!  

 

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#2 of 3 Old 01-09-2012, 03:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by RedHeadedMamaof1 View Post

My husband found out he has shingles last week.  As soon as we found out he has been on medication and not been in contact with my son.  My son was however in contact with him prior to finding out and I have kept him home from school since we found out.  I'm trying to decide what to do and do not want to draw attention to my son and the fact that he is not vaccinated with the school.  Do I send him to school, as he has no signs of illness currently?  Do I keep him home 21 days, the longest incubation period?  Do I call the school and ask what their policy is?  If anyone has been through this or has any advice or ideas please help!  This has been so stressful!  

 



my husband had shingles twice now, and i didn't do anything out of the ordinary.. we just carried on with business as usual...hubby was in a lot of pain, tho and stayed in bed mostly..but for the rest of us, nothing happened to me or my 3 unvaxed kids.  

Shingles can present as chicken pox in children, or as shingles in kids who are vaxed for chicken pox.

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#3 of 3 Old 01-09-2012, 06:31 PM
 
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Many adults are coming down with shingles.


It's indirectly because of the chicken pox vaccine.

 

You see, when you get over the chicken pox, the virus goes dormant in one of the spinal nerves, and stays there forever.  Under normal circumstances, the adult immune system would receive a "booster" by being exposed to a child with chicken pox, but because children are now immunized for chicken pox, adults don't get that "booster."  Consequently, the immune system kind of forgets how to deal with the dormant chicken pox virus, which re-awakens as shingles.

 

The pharmaceutical industry's answer to this is to offer a shingles booster to adults. (More profits, obviously.)

 

At this point, I would think the big worry woud be your husband--he is contagious for chicken pox, and you would not want him to infect anyone who has a compromised immune system (undergoing chemo, for example, or someone with lupus or MS). 

 

Chicken pox has a 3-week incubation period, so I don't think it's reasonable to keep your child home for 3 weeks!  What if he never gets the chicken pox?

 

It's very considerate of you to worry about your child's infecting others, but when you think about it, anyone who receives a live-virus vaccine (like FluMist, or the MMR) is contagious for those antigens for up to 3 weeks.  That's why the pediatrician is supposed to advise you to keep the child away from anyone with a compromised immune system--but the last few years, doctors seem to have dropped that advice.

 

I would keep an eye out for ANY symptoms, and at the first bit of fever, or the first stuffy nose, I'd consider keeping him home from school, just in case it turns into anything more.

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