DTaP vaccine for babies who have pertussis.... - Mothering Forums

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Old 08-22-2012, 12:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I had triplets on 7/21 at 33 weeks. One came home at 2.5 weeks, one at 3.5 weeks (last week). 

 

Long scary story short: Yesterday AM my daughter started struggling to breathe, then stopped altogether. Of course she was rushed to the hospital and is back in the NICU. She is currently stable but not breathing on her own and is very very sick. They tested her for everything bacterial (urine, blood, spinal tap) and all was clear. She has respiratory issues and a cough- they are now saying its pertussis. They have swabbed her for it but its a send away test and we wont know 100% til tomorrow. She does not have RSV, that was also negative. 

 

I denied Hep B, eye drops, Vit K etc at birth. They know I am a non-vaccinator. Ironically though, I made the judgment call early in my pregnancy, knowing we would be bringing three preemies home to a house where 5 older children would be going back to school, to get our older children DTaP. That was completed many months ago. So to be clear: my older children are not vaccinated at all EXCEPT for a full course of DTaP, and my babies are not vaccinated at all. 

 

When speaking to the nurse this morning and she mentioned this, I asked what the course of treatment was for pertussis if it is that. She said that they treated with special antibiotics. And they give a DTaP vaccination. Then she said "We know you dont do that, so we have a social worker who will talk to you about it and has already put together information on pertussis and DTaP". 

 

It seems odd to give a DTaP vaccine to a baby that already has pertussis. Am I wrong? Its not going to treat/ cure it, is it? And does it need to be prevented from reoccurring by vaccine if she has already had it and therefore will have natural immunity? I cant find any information on this. Anyone know? She hasnt even been diagnosed yet, but if it comes back positive they are going to move very quickly and I would like to know what I am dealing with. 

 

Insight from you brilliant mamas?


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Old 08-22-2012, 02:55 PM
 
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Sorry to hear about your baby's problem. I hope she will come through just fine.

 

As far as the vaccine goes, I would say whatever her immune system is struggling with should be the only thing at the moment. If a vaccine is administered than her immune system will have a lot more to take care of. If she already has pertussis than what good would the vaccine do her, since her body is already working on the antibodies. And unless there is an immediate threat of contracting tetanus and/or diphtheria while in the hospital, I would not let her have the vaccine.
 


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Old 08-22-2012, 03:37 PM
 
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That doesn't sound right to me.  Especially considering she is not at the minimum age for the first dose, which is 2 months (the vaccine is tested for efficacy and safety on full-term, healthy infants, certainly not ones before due date!), and a person is not considered covered by the vaccine until after 2 or 3 doses (I forget which).

 

If they continue to push it, I would ask for safety information on giving the vaccine to a sick pre-term infant prior to 2 months, as I have never heard of that being acceptable before.


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Old 08-22-2012, 03:59 PM
 
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I agree....isn't it contraindicated to vaccinate a sick infant per AAP/CDC standards?  (Oh, i forgot, they tend to forget their standards and do what they want. )

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Originally Posted by Bokonon View Post

That doesn't sound right to me.  Especially considering she is not at the minimum age for the first dose, which is 2 months (the vaccine is tested for efficacy and safety on full-term, healthy infants, certainly not ones before due date!), and a person is not considered covered by the vaccine until after 2 or 3 doses (I forget which).

 

If they continue to push it, I would ask for safety information on giving the vaccine to a sick pre-term infant prior to 2 months, as I have never heard of that being acceptable before.

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Old 08-22-2012, 05:02 PM
 
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Absolutely they should not be vaccinating a sick infant, especially a sick preemie. Goodness, my puppy came down with kennel cough and the vet said absolutely no shots until she was completely better.

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Old 08-23-2012, 03:12 AM
 
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Ask the docs to see the package insert first.

 

http://www.immunize.org/packageinserts/pi_diphtheria.asp

 

 

Just her illness itself should be contradiction enough to not vaccinate her!
 


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Old 08-23-2012, 01:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone. The test result is not back yet, but they seem to have decided to treat her for pertussis anyway- they started azithromycin last night without even asking me. :( I wouldn't have given consent for that, and now I dont know what to do. I feel out of control.... 


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Old 08-23-2012, 02:06 PM
 
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Some links for you

 

http://www.beyondconformity.co.nz/_blog/Hilary's_Desk/post/Whooping_cough_and_chameleons/

 

http://beyondvaccination.com/showthread.php?453-Antiobiotics-make-whooping-cough-worse.&s=6c9f2eeaff40d5a5f8d9d6030bf0526e

 

http://www.beyondconformity.co.nz/_blog/Hilary's_Desk/post/Whooping_cough_treatment/

 

I am so sorry this has happened, but unfortunately, at this point they have you between a rock and a hard place. Healing vibes to your precious little one.


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Old 08-24-2012, 05:36 PM
 
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Another article, written by Suzanne Humphries MD:

 

Treating Infants With Whooping Cough

 

 

 

 

Quote:

Being left in the medical scenario would certainly seem to place infected infants at a disadvantage.Conventional doctors only know to give antibiotics, which can actually make the cough worse and lead to depressed bowel immunity and colitis as well allergic reactions. They will take the infant from the mother and possibly insist on formula feeding via nasogastric tube. The infant will be left in an oxygen tent to cough, have its arm strapped to a board with an IV, and have daily blood drawn. And as you can see in the photo of this infant pictured who has pertussis they will leave it to cough lying on its back, which will prevent proper mucus expelling, and lead to increased risk of infection and complications. They will be given NO vitamin C at all. All of this sets the framework for a poor outcome.

 

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Old 08-26-2012, 08:16 PM
 
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Hi...So sorry to hear this. You are in my DDC (I don't post there often). I could see them wanting to give DTaP to the other 2 babies to prevent them catching WC (though I agree it is unsafe to give to preemies under the usual 2mo of age) but I cannot see the rationale behind wanting to give it to your sick one. She is currently creating her own antibodies to WC if in fact she does have it (which they don't even know yet!) So it makes no sense to give the vaccine in this case. I think there is a good chance the nurse has no idea what she is talking about. Do you have a family pediatrician you can ask? Or even a hospitalist pediatrician? Keep us posted!

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Old 08-27-2012, 09:17 AM
 
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just wondering what the swab came back as??

 

Thinking of your precious baby. Hope she is ok hug2.gif


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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Old 08-28-2012, 11:59 AM
 
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Thinking of you and hoping your LO is much better by now.


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Old 08-30-2012, 12:18 PM
 
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How is everything? Please give an update. Hope all is much better.
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Old 08-30-2012, 06:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So sorry everyone, didn't mean to run away.

She was/ is positive. Her triplet brothers and the rest of us in the house were all negative. All 11 of us have been treated with zpack but I don't hold much hope that more people won't get it.

She spent a week in the NICU and came home on Tuesday. I don't know if that was the rght thing to do. She has these coughing episodes that are truly terrifying, she turns blue, can't breathe, goes limp etc. they say this could last weeks. I am just constantly terrified she is going to die in my arms. Or worse, when I am asleep etc.

The boys and one of my older DDs have a greeny runny nose and a slight cough now and I am scared its starting for them.

It's a bit of a nightmare. And the irony is not lost on me that I vaccinated for this. It makes me crazy.

Thank you so much for everyone's help.

Oh, I refused the vaccine for her, citing that it was a contraindication of the vaccine itself.

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Old 08-30-2012, 06:47 PM
 
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Hugs to you!  We went through Whooping Cough when my now 4yo was 8 mo.  It was terrifying at first, and then a long haul for her to get well.  It was close to eight weeks of coughing, predominately at night.  What I did to keep the mucus from invading her lungs was every episode, I would hold her in the baby Heimlich position and thump her back as necessary.  Truly exhausting, but we got through it.  My twins currently have chicken pox, and I hope they wait a few years before another round with Whooping Cough.  Given that it seems to reach epidemic levels every couple years around here, I'm sure it won't be long.  It was much easier for my older ones.  In fact, I didn't really suspect WC until the baby caught it and had the classic whoop.  They coughed, but it didn't seem to be extraordinarily worse than other cough/colds, just longer term.  


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Old 08-30-2012, 08:02 PM
 
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I'm so, so sorry you are going through this.  How scary!  Please continue to update us, as you are all in my thoughts.


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Old 08-31-2012, 10:35 PM
 
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That's terrifying. I am so sorry you are going through this.
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Old 08-31-2012, 11:09 PM
 
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I'm so sorry - must be so scary for you greensad.gif I hope she recovers soon. (((hugs))))

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Old 09-21-2012, 09:57 AM
 
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wondering how you are now? hows the baby? did any other kids cme down with it?


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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Old 09-22-2012, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marnica View Post

wondering how you are now? hows the baby? did any other kids cme down with it?

 

Thanks for asking. :) No one else came down with it, even the baby boys. I did start treating with sodium ascorbate (they wouldnt 'let' me give it separately in the NICU so I added it to my pumped BM that I was bringing in) for everyone so maybe that has a lot to do with it. 

 

Oh, since this post she was readmitted- I was right about feeling like she wasnt ready to come home. She fairly rapidly downward spiralled, and then late on tuesday the 4th she once again basically 'stopped'. Thankfully she in bed with us- I was almost asleep and felt her jolt and turned on the light to find her grey, lifeless, eyes wide and fixed. She wouldn't come around with stimulations, DH performed chest compressions and she did start breathing again. We called 911 and she went back to the NICU again for another week. However those first few days were awful- the cough caused desats which caused brady which all became a vicious circle. She was resuscitated a few times. However, she got MUCH better in that week and came home on the 11th. She is on apnea and brady monitors for a while but is doing a billion times better. She stills coughs a lot obviously, but they dont cause her to apnea or brady anymore. 

 

I hope that no one is mad for me sharing my story here on a vax forum. Let me be clear that I have no regrets about not vaxxing, and many regrets about vaxxing my older children for DTaP. This hasnt changed my opinion on anything, in fact its more concreted my non-vax beliefs. Dont get me wrong, pertussis is the worst and scariest thing to happen to us, but its separate to vaccinating. 


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Old 09-22-2012, 10:38 AM
 
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I can't even imagine how heartbreaking it must have been to go through all that!  I'm glad she's doing so much better and the boys never caught it.  What a relief.

 

I'm so glad you've shared your story - pro-vax, anti-vax, or anywhere in between.  Please don't beat yourself up about vaxxing your older children.  You made an educated choice based on what you thought was in the best interests of your whole family.  Many of us might have made the same choice with 3 preemies!


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Old 09-23-2012, 11:04 AM
 
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Thanks so much for updating us.  I am so glad to hear she is doing better. 


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Old 09-23-2012, 01:58 PM
 
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Thank you so much for your update and story. I've been thinking of you.

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Old 09-25-2012, 04:37 AM
 
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Oh you poor things! So scary. I'm glad she is on the mend. Hugs to you are your family.

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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Old 09-25-2012, 04:52 AM
 
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Thanks for sharing. I'm so glad everyone was OK in the end. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by momtoafireteam View Post

Let me be clear that I have no regrets about not vaxxing, and many regrets about vaxxing my older children for DTaP. This hasnt changed my opinion on anything, in fact its more concreted my non-vax beliefs. Dont get me wrong, pertussis is the worst and scariest thing to happen to us, but its separate to vaccinating. 

 

Can you (or other mothers here) help me understand this statement better. I think I'm interpreting this that you chose to vaccinate the older children to help protect the preemies, and that didn't work so it wasn't worth it? 

 

We have to remember that pertussis is a disease which can be prevented by vaccination in some fraction of cases. By which I mean, having been vaccinated it has been demonstrated that after exposure to pertussis a person is less likely to get the disease, and if they get it likely to get a milder version. This does not mean that no vaccinated person will get pertussis, or that an unvaccinated person will definitely get it, but it improves the odds for vaccinated people. None of your older (vaccinated) children got pertussis - which was likely helped by their vaccinations. 

 

 I have to admit I'm a little scared about you having put vitamin C into your breast milk too. I'm so glad no harm came from it. I would have been inclined instead to eat as many oranges as I could stomach to naturally increase the vit C content on my breast milk. Little preemie livers are so delicate that any extra concentration of chemicals (and vit c is a chemical even if often a naturally occuring one) could potentially be dangerous. But thank goodness it all turned out OK in the end in your case.  


Mother of two living in UK. Daughter (2007) born in USA, son (2010) born here. I'm pro natural birth, midwife care, breastfeeding, co-sleeping, baby wearing and a keen advocate of cloth diapering. I'm a full time working research scientist (physical sciences) and I'm pro-vaccine.

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