I really would like advice--Thinking about giving 3 y/o her first vax before preschool and new baby - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 49 Old 04-11-2012, 06:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I keep going back and forth in my head.  I posted my long story, actually X-posted it on the other vaccination boards here at MDC and have gotten only one response which was basically a bunch of links I had already read.

 

I felt up to this point I made the right decision to not vax DD.  If I was not pregnant again I don't think I would be even thinking about this...But DD is going to be starting preschool in Sept in the exact week the new baby is due.  We are also in the middle of a record pertussis outbreak in our state, supposedly the highest since 1940.  I have many, many friends with pertussis at the moment (most are adults.)  If my 3 y/o DD got pertussis it would totally suck...But it's not her I am so worried about, it's the new baby.  I am NOT going to vax a new baby. 

 

I read online here how DTaP does not prevent transmission, and that is a bummer but I understand that point now.  However, I am still thinking of getting 3 y/o DD the DTaP because 1.)  If she does get pertussis, it will be less violent and she might cough less and thus spread the pertussis in the household less, plus it might be shorter lived.  Also, I would not have to deal with taking care of a very sick toddler and trying to keep new baby away from her alone while DH is at work.  2.)  Her preschool has a huge outside area with a sandbox and play area.  I wouldn't need to worry about tetanus if she gets hurt at school.

 

DH is getting the DTaP booster because as he says "Why not?"  I am on the fence myself.  I don't feel comfortable getting a vaccine during pregnancy or breastfeeding, but I would if it meant I would be transmitting antibodies to my newborn through my milk.  Does anyone know if that is true?  Can a newly vaccinated mother transmit vaccine aquired pertussis antibodies through her milk to the newborn?

 

However, I am very, very afraid of vaccines.  My heart breaks when I read stories about children who were forever changed after a vaccine.  This is the main reason I don't want to vaccinate an infant, it feels wrong deep in my gut to do this.  At 3 I know she is still a baby but she seems older, stronger, better equipped to deal with any adverse effects of a vaccine.

 

That said, I am about 50/50 on if I am going to go this route or not.  I have 4-5 months to decide.  Does anyone have information about adverse effects from toddlers getting DTaP?  Or positive stories?  Anecdotal stories really do help me a lot in my decision process. 

 

Thank you!


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#2 of 49 Old 04-11-2012, 07:07 PM
 
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When was last time you had dtp? I believe you can be tested to see how your immunity is. You would pass antibodies through placenta and breastmilk, if you have.

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For infants, transplacentally transferred maternal antibodies might provide protection against pertussis in early life and before beginning the primary DTaP series. Several studies provide evidence supporting the existence of efficient transplacental transfer of pertussis antibodies (7,11,12). Cord blood from newborn infants whose mothers received Tdap during pregnancy or before pregnancy had higher concentrations of pertussis antibodies when compared with cord blood from newborn infants of unvaccinated mothers (7,11). The half-life of transferred maternal pertussis antibodies is approximately 6 weeks (12).The effectiveness of maternal antipertussis antibodies in preventing infant pertussis is not yet known, but pertussis-specific antibodies likely confer protection and modify the severity of pertussis illness (13,14). In addition, a woman vaccinated with Tdap during pregnancy likely will be protected at time of delivery, and therefore less likely to transmit pertussis to her infant. After receipt of Tdap, boosted pertussis-specific antibody levels peak after several weeks, followed by a decline over several months (15,16). To optimize the concentration of maternal antibodies transferred to the fetus, ACIP concluded that unvaccinated pregnant women should receive Tdap, preferably in the third or late second (after 20 weeks gestation) trimester.
 

 

Personally, the more I am reading about pertussis vax, the more useless it seems, but that's me and what I've been reading... I only have one DD, who is partially vaxed before I stopped at 6mos and was selective before that. I do not think I would vax her if I had a new baby coming.

 

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#3 of 49 Old 04-11-2012, 07:18 PM
 
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When was last time you had dtp? I believe you can be tested to see how your immunity is. You would pass antibodies through placenta and breastmilk, if you have.

 

Personally, the more I am reading about pertussis vax, the more useless it seems, but that's me and what I've been reading... I only have one DD, who is partially vaxed before I stopped at 6mos and was selective before that. I do not think I would vax her if I had a new baby coming.

 



This is how I feel as well.  I just don't trust the safety of the vaccine, especially in pregnant women.   For me, I don't know that potentially preventing pertussis is worth the potential lifelong risk of vaccination during pregnancy (for which there are no studies on, so it's a big question mark).


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#4 of 49 Old 04-11-2012, 07:36 PM
 
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I think you should 1. ask your hcp about testing your immunity, 2. if you don't do so already, check into boosting immunity especially for 3 yo, there's lots of other stuff around preschool, not vax preventable.... and then figure out next options after you have an idea whether or not you can pass antibodies to new baby.

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#5 of 49 Old 04-11-2012, 08:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks guys!  I'm already one step ahead of you, I've already called the lab and asked if they have a titer for pertussis antibodies (they do but told me it would cost 300 dollars if my insurance wouldn't pay for it).  I then called my insurance and they WILL cover it!  So I emailed my PCP and asked if she can write me a lab slip.  I hope to go in to get my blood tested this week.  My last vax for pertussis was when I was about 10.  However, I got my titer run for Hep B when I was in MW school and I was still immune from my childhood, so maybe, just maybe I will be from pertussis too.

 

But if not, I'm not sure where to go from there.  I absolutely don't feel comfortable with the following things 1.)  Getting vaxxed while pregnant and 2.)  Getting my newborn vaxxed.  So my choices are (if I'm not immune) to vax myself with a booster postpartum, and give my 3 y/o her first vaxxes ever, or do nothing.  I keep wavering back and forth.  If we weren't about to have a new baby in the middle of a pertussis outbreak with DD starting preschool I wouldn't even be thinking about this!  I'm truly not comfortable with vaccines.  However, I am also not comfortable with the risk my newborn could get pertussis.  So that's my situation.  Any more words of advice are greatly appreciated.


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#6 of 49 Old 04-11-2012, 08:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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And I already give DD 800mg Vitamin D daily, Udos probiotics, fish oils, and she eats a whole foods, organic diet (toddler style), and I give her vitamin C and elderberry tincture when she is sick,  so I think I'm doing as much immune boosting as I can?  What else would you recommend for a 3 year old?


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#7 of 49 Old 04-11-2012, 08:20 PM
 
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I completely understand it feels like a no-win situation!  But the current outbreak might be over by the time your baby is born.  You have some time to monitor the number of cases and make a decision based on your titers as well.

 

My son was in preschool when the H1N1 hysteria was going on and my daughter was born, and then the flu vax was being pushed that fall.  There ended up being all of 1 confirmed case of H1N1 in his preschool, but the only other communicable illnesses in the school/daycare were Coxsackie, pink eye, strep, and a stomach virus, none of which were vaccine-preventable.


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#8 of 49 Old 04-12-2012, 04:34 AM
 
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You ask, Why not?  here's some information to consider..

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#9 of 49 Old 04-12-2012, 06:01 AM
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by nukuspot View Post
So my choices are (if I'm not immune) to vax myself with a booster postpartum, and give my 3 y/o her first vaxxes ever, or do nothing.  I keep wavering back and forth. 

 

One thing to consider/research is how quick/effective a pp booster will be, if you have no immunity... I think the link I posted above says it takes a few weeks...?

...and on the same hand... I think it would take several rounds of DTaP for 3 y/o to probably have decent pertussis protection... If you wanted to do full round with decent spacing, that might be something to start sooner than later. I agree with you about vax during pregnancy. 

 

Hope you do have some immunity left!! 
 

 

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I completely understand it feels like a no-win situation!  But the current outbreak might be over by the time your baby is born.  You have some time to monitor the number of cases and make a decision based on your titers as well.

 

My son was in preschool when the H1N1 hysteria was going on and my daughter was born, and then the flu vax was being pushed that fall.  There ended up being all of 1 confirmed case of H1N1 in his preschool, but the only other communicable illnesses in the school/daycare were Coxsackie, pink eye, strep, and a stomach virus, none of which were vaccine-preventable.


I was not worried about H1N1 in the slightest...I thought it was just hype.  Pertussis for an older child (like my toddler) I'm also not overly concerned about (though it would SUCK).  It's just the newborn, babies under 4 months old especially since they count for basically almost all of the mortality/morbidity associated with the disease.  I want to say that I am usually not super concerned about most VPDs in general, it's just because I'm going to have a new baby and there lots of pertussis going around.  Every week one of my FB friends posts that they or their older kids have pertussis.  When DD was a newborn I didn't go out much for the first few months (not because of disease fears, just being a new mama), so she didn't seem to have a lot of exposure, and there wasn't a high epidemic going on.  So I wasn't very worried about her as an infant getting pertussis.  With baby #2, there is no way I can do that, I am a SAHM!  Baby has to come with me and DD #1 everywhere....

 


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Originally Posted by slmommy View Post

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One thing to consider/research is how quick/effective a pp booster will be, if you have no immunity... I think the link I posted above says it takes a few weeks...?

...and on the same hand... I think it would take several rounds of DTaP for 3 y/o to probably have decent pertussis protection... If you wanted to do full round with decent spacing, that might be something to start sooner than later. I agree with you about vax during pregnancy. 

 

Hope you do have some immunity left!! 
 

 

I hope I do too!  My PCP still hasn't called me back about getting me the lab slip for the titer.  I'll give her one more day then call her again.  I agree with you, DD would need multiple rounds of vax if I am going to give her any, so if I decide to do this (which I have totally not decided one way or the other) I need to start soon so she is at least partially protected before September.

 

Basically, the only things we have decided on are 1.)  DH is going to get a DTaP booster (because he needs a tetanus booster anyway, he is a woodworker and cuts himself deeply on rusty tools about once a day--So he might as well just get the DTaP instead of the TD.  2.)  I am going to get my blood tested for a pertussis titer.

 

Everything else is still up in the air.  I don't rush into decisions but I am aware this is kind of time sensitive.
 

 


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#12 of 49 Old 04-12-2012, 02:29 PM
 
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this is a great article on WC, http://vaccinationcouncil.org/media/The-Vitamin-C-Treatment-of-Whooping-Cough.pdf

 

 

and if were me, as much as I would want to limit the sickness in the older child, I would want to know if they were sick and not just spreading the bacteria.  If your older daughter is showing signs of WC and you take her and get tested and she is positive for it, they will treat the whole family, but if she is vaccinated and not really sick, you might never know until it's too late and they won't be as quick to test her because she is "Immune", but the majority of cases lately are in the vaccinated population.

 

this is from Australia, http://www.geelongadvertiser.com.au/article/2012/03/14/312921_news.html newborn almost dies from vaccinated sister.

 

 

One of my personal opinions is this is the first year they have approved and PUSHed adults to get the DPT and cocooning you baby by all the parents, grandparents etc getting the booster.  This has been the highest record of WC and not just confined to one state, but all over the country!  Shouldn't the rates be going down.

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#13 of 49 Old 04-12-2012, 03:25 PM - Thread Starter
 
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and if were me, as much as I would want to limit the sickness in the older child, I would want to know if they were sick and not just spreading the bacteria.  If your older daughter is showing signs of WC and you take her and get tested and she is positive for it, they will treat the whole family, but if she is vaccinated and not really sick, you might never know until it's too late and they won't be as quick to test her because she is "Immune", but the majority of cases lately are in the vaccinated population.

 



That is a really good point...I am going to bring this up with her pediatrician when I go in to talk with her next week.  She is a standard MD but has been very supportive of our decision so far to not vaccinate.  I was really happily suprised.


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#14 of 49 Old 04-12-2012, 11:36 PM
 
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Sorry , can I just correct that Comment " newborn almost dies from vaccinated sister " Vaccinated sister wasn't the illness , pertussis was .

NO vaccine is 100% effective , that is a fact . Just as the fact is that 92% of deaths form pertussis are in the under 3 months age group .

 

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#15 of 49 Old 04-13-2012, 12:20 PM
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The risk of pertussis for an infant is higher than I am comfortable with.  I would prefer the vaccine.  I'm not thrilled with it's efficacy in preventing transmission, but it does do a good job of reducing severity of the illness, which helps cut down on opportunities for transmission a bit as well. 

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The risk of pertussis for an infant is higher than I am comfortable with.  I would prefer the vaccine.  I'm not thrilled with it's efficacy in preventing transmission, but it does do a good job of reducing severity of the illness, which helps cut down on opportunities for transmission a bit as well



Do you have a reference for this?  Thanks...

 


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#17 of 49 Old 04-15-2012, 07:57 AM
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No I don't have a reference for that right now.  I have read it somewhere, but mainly a shorter illness will generally have a shorter period of germ-spreading coughing, which means fewer opportunities for transmission of the illness.  

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I have no great ideas for you but I am so glad you posted.

I am just across the boarder from you in BC so we are experiencing the same outbreak and its freaking me out. My DS is 2 and will have a new one in Oct so the exact same thing has been on my mind. I think we will go ahead an get him the vaccine for peace of mind and the fact that my TCM (who is mostly anti vac is in favor of everyone getting a Tetnus vaccine). He is going to give me some homeopathics that kind of contain the vaccine? I don't really know how it works but I trust him 100%

Anyways, good luck in your decision, I'll be reading to help finalize my decision

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No I don't have a reference for that right now.  I have read it somewhere, but mainly a shorter illness will generally have a shorter period of germ-spreading coughing, which means fewer opportunities for transmission of the illness.  



This is what I believe to be true as well, which is why health care professionals will tell you vaccination helps lessen transmission.  However I would counter this was mainly applicable to a public setting, and not an intimate setting like a household where the family members are kissing and touching in more close confines.


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#20 of 49 Old 04-15-2012, 11:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I still haven't come to any conclusion by the way other than DH is going to get a Tdap booster because he needs a tetanus booster for work anyway and the adult Td still contains thimerasol so it is actually in his best interest to get the Tdap!

 

Not sure what myself and DD will do but still researching madly.


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#21 of 49 Old 04-15-2012, 07:28 PM
 
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This is what I believe to be true as well, which is why health care professionals will tell you vaccination helps lessen transmission.  However I would counter this was mainly applicable to a public setting, and not an intimate setting like a household where the family members are kissing and touching in more close confines.



Sick is sick, regardless of coughing.  The pertussis vaccine may reduce the severity of symptoms in people who have had it, but does it really reduce the duration?  Someone could have little to no coughing but still unknowingly be spreading germs.  Questions I would ask:  has the vaccine been shown to actually reduce the duration of the illness itself, not just the symptoms?  Could someone who has had the vaccine be asymptomatic but still a vector for transmission?  It's a tough call with a newborn in the house but personally I'd prefer to know if someone was sick and take steps to reduce contact in that event. 

 


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#22 of 49 Old 04-16-2012, 04:19 AM
 
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Some recent information on Whooping Cough in the UK. May have useful links about what the vaccine does. 

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-17691650


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#23 of 49 Old 04-17-2012, 08:43 PM
 
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Hmm. I'm thinking about this one and all the responses. I guess my question is "Do you intend to exclusively breast feed?"  When I spoke to my doctor about my babies becoming sick one thing he pointed out was that when exposed to illness (since I was with my babies nearly 24x7) that I would be exposed and immediately begin building antibodies to whatever we were exposed to and pass them to my infant through my breast milk. Also, that I would be more likely to become sick than my infant. I'm not sure if this is 100% true or not but vaccinating your 3 year old would not prevent her (nor others) from transmitting  viruses to others? Having the germs on hands, surfaces, people sneezing in a room where you walk in .......... there are so many routes for being exposed that for me personally I probably wouldn't introduce the vaccine just for that reason. You can transmit illness without actually being sick yourself right?

 

I guess I'd explore the reasons you haven't done any vaccines to date and decide whether doing them now aligns with why you haven't yet.

 

Best of luck with your decision :)


 

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#24 of 49 Old 04-19-2012, 10:58 AM
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A 3yo sibling who is attending preschool can bring home diseases mom has not been exposed to, and the protective impact of breastfeeding is not absolute.  Breastfed babies tend to get sick less often - but they do get sick.

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http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/323187#ixzz1sQMXIHeD


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#26 of 49 Old 04-19-2012, 11:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, I breastfeed, exclusively and for a long time...However I do surely agree with stik above, that I don't think that BF will protect a newborn by itself.  I BF my toddler for 3 years and she surely got her share of illness...Some we shared, others seemed to be just her. 

 

What I am thinking about currently is "cocooning'--Having all the adults that will be in contact with the newborn get a booster.  I am aware it does not reduce transmission but it might reduce the severity of the coughing, thus being less likely to transmit if someone gets pertussis but is unaware they have it in the early stages.

 

here are my other thoughts RE:  DTaP for babies and toddlers.  Just wanted to share what is in my head currently:

 

The risks of pertussis to a newborn are almost all in the first 6 months, most before 4 months.   The vaccine series for a newborn is at 2,4, 6 months then again at 15 months   Kids are not covered for the pertussis part of the vaccine until they have all 4-5 vaccines which by the time they are 1.5 years, and are well out of the danger zone of infancy.   So pertussis vaccine for babies does not actually protect the actual baby, it serves to be a base to protect them later in life from giving it to OTHER babies and to make it less severe if they get it after 1.5 years of age....Does that make sense?   It also does not prevent transmission of pertussis, it just serves to make the person who is vaccinated have a less severe form of the disease, thus kind of preventing transmission by making the person cough less since its spread by droplet form.   Many vaccines work by making the person totally immune for life thus increasing the "herd immunity" in the public, but sadly pertussis is not one of them.   The public health campaign around that is misleading.  So it doesn't make sense to me on that level to vaccinate the newborn, but it does the toddler...

 
However, that said, the DTaP vaccine is among one of the more reactive vaccines for babies if you look up reported side effects, many babies have reactions to it, some very severe.   Also it contains aluminum and formaldehyde, among other preservatives and adjuvants.   So, if I add it all up, risk of vaccine reaction in a baby plus vaccine heavy metals and contaminants (times 5 doses), plus the fact it will not adequately protect the baby until she is beyond the age of concern...The risks do NOT (to me) outweigh the benefits of giving a newborn (or frankly even my toddler) the vaccine.   However for adults, being they just need one shot, they are less likely to have vaccine reactions (for adults it's just run of the mill stuff like arm soreness and fever, nothing serious), and they are larger and their brains are fully formed so less concern about heavy metals in their bloodstream, it makes sense to vaccinate adults even if it's not fully effective against transmission, at least if a vaccinated adult had pertussis around a new baby they are less likely to cough on her ;)  So for these reasons I am wary to vaccinate the toddler, I don't now much about 3 year olds and vaccine reactions.  I'm trying to research it but there is not much out there.  For these reasons above I am NOT going to vax the newborn.
 
As you can tell I've thought lots about it.   Cocooning is not just for people who don't plan to vax their infants, it's being recommended by many doctors in our state for all babies,because babies who get the vax still won't be adequately protected by the age 4-6 months.   So...I'm still going to go out for the first few months, will probably just take turns leaving baby home with someone and I'll practice good hygiene/hand washing upon return, so will everyone else.  It's the best we can do.   Studies say that if all adults that are around the baby get the booster the risk to the baby either drops by 38%-75% based on the model used.   So not 100% but there is no 100% choice offered except truly living in a bubble!  I'm still going to send my toddler to preschool as well...
 
The main thing I am still on the fence right now about is whether or not to vax the toddler.  If I start this month, at the catch up schedule of 1 month between doses 1-2 and 2-3, then 6 months between 3-4 she will not have had her full 4 shots before the baby is 5 months old...So I need to find out if her having just 3 shots would be adequate or if it takes the full series to have basic protection (I am aware it does not prevent transmission, I'm just talking about protection against the severity of the pertussis so she would be less likely to cough all over.)  if she would not have basic protection until the full series is done, I will not be starting it because it makes no sense to start it if she is not going to finish it in time for the baby to be through the first few months of life.  if getting just 3 shots would suffice, then I still have to soul search and think about if it feels right.  I hate, hate, hate the idea of introducing aluminum and formaldehyde into my perfect healthy toddler's body.  Nothing is going to change my feelings on that, I just need to see if I end up feeling the benefits outweigh the risks.
 
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Interesting article, Rik8144.  I usually like more scientfic evidence based in depth articles...I wish that one would have elaborated more, especially on what in the world this quote meant in context:

 

The [whooping cough] vaccines cause the very disease they claim to treat, so the more kids get vaccinated, the more outbreaks occur," wrote health guru Mike Adams in a recent article for NaturalNews.com. "Thus, the vaccination itself becomes the pathway to re-infection and repeat business."


 

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That BBC article didn't really give me much except for showing me that the British have a different childhood vaccine schedule for the DTaP than we do:

 

Babies are vaccinated at the ages of two, three and four months - and only after all three do they have full protection.

Since November 2001, children in the UK have been routinely offered a pre-school booster between the ages of three and five.

 

And they say that they have full protection after all 3 doses, but here in the USA it is 4 doses at a different schedule!?


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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukuspot View Post

That BBC article didn't really give me much except for showing me that the British have a different childhood vaccine schedule for the DTaP than we do:

 

Babies are vaccinated at the ages of two, three and four months - and only after all three do they have full protection.

Since November 2001, children in the UK have been routinely offered a pre-school booster between the ages of three and five.

 

And they say that they have full protection after all 3 doses, but here in the USA it is 4 doses at a different schedule!?

 

And then they get another one at age 5...and the more doses, the more chance of a reaction. 


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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukuspot View Post
 
So I need to find out if her having just 3 shots would be adequate or if it takes the full series to have basic protection (I am aware it does not prevent transmission, I'm just talking about protection against the severity of the pertussis so she would be less likely to cough all over.)  if she would not have basic protection until the full series is done, I will not be starting it because it makes no sense to start it if she is not going to finish it in time for the baby to be through the first few months of life.  if getting just 3 shots would suffice, then I still have to soul search and think about if it feels right.  

I would be interested in knowing this too. I only ended up getting DD 3 rounds of penatcel on schedule, and she's had nothing since 6 months... I wouldn't go with pentacel again but at the time wanted dtap and ip (live in oral polio using country), and figured 1 jab was better than 2... but wouldn't go that route again because of aluminum, and looks like there is a difference in amount of antigen too.

 

Anyway, found this is Daptacel insert, http://www.fda.gov/downloads/BiologicsBloodVaccines/Vaccines/ApprovedProducts/UCM103037.pdf

about 3 dose series

 

Quote:
A randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled efficacy and safety study was conducted in Sweden during 1992-1995 (Sweden I Efficacy Trial) under the sponsorship of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. A total of 9,829 infants received 1 of 4 vaccines: 
DAPTACEL vaccine (N = 2,587); another investigational acellular pertussis vaccine (N = 2,566); whole-cell pertussis DTP vaccine (N = 2,102); or DT vaccine as placebo (Swedish National Bacteriological Laboratory, N = 2,574). Infants were immunized at 2, 4 and 6 months of age. The mean length of follow-up was 2 years after the third dose of vaccine. The protective efficacy of DAPTACEL vaccine against pertussis after 3 doses using the World Health Organization (WHO) case definition (21 consecutive days of paroxysmal cough with culture or serologic confirmation or epidemiologic link to a confirmed case) was 84.9% (95% confidence interval [CI] 80.1 to 88.6). The protective efficacy of DAPTACEL vaccine against mild pertussis (1 day of cough with laboratory confirmation) was 77.9% (95% CI 72.6 to 82.2). Protection against pertussis by DAPTACEL vaccine was sustained for the 2-year follow-up period.  
 
.....goes on....
 
While a serologic correlate of protection for pertussis has not been established, the antibody response to all antigens in North 
American infants after 4 doses of DAPTACEL vaccine at 2, 4, 6 and 15-20 months of age was comparable to that achieved in Swedish infants in whom efficacy was demonstrated after 3 doses of DAPTACEL vaccine at 2, 4 and 6 months of age.
 
Page 21

So, I don't know... maybe check out the other brands inserts... although I think at least one of the other brands has trace amounts of thimerosal? DT antibody responses after 3 doses are very high. 

 

I was just thinking, another good thing about vaxing toddler instead of infant is that they can probably express what they are feeling post-vax. If you did one dose and it doesn't go well, no need to do more. 

 

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