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Discussion Starter #1
So, my husband told me today that the 4 week old baby of our friends had to go to the hospital for a spinal tap. He thinks it was due to concerns about meningitis but is not sure because he received the information second hand.<br><br>
I'm upset for them and really hope it is a false alarm but what I am really freaking out about is that our 5 month old is *not* vaccinated.<br><br>
Full disclosure: our baby isn't unvaxxed because of any deeply held conviction on our part or because of a well-researched opinion but rather because I freaked out before his 2 month apt and just couldn't do the vax. I wanted to buy time to research. Well, life happened and I didn't get around to researching but at his 4 month apt he was recovering from a cold so I wouldn't vax him then either.<br><br>
So here we are with an unvaccinated baby that I am not 100% comfortable with and now a possible meningitis exposure.<br><br>
I should add that we also have an almost 3 year old who is fully vaccinated except for Hepatitis and Chicken Pox (before I discovered MDC) who happens to have a slight fever today (but he also has a cold and if there wasn't the threat of meningitis in the air, I would be completely unconcerned).<br><br>
These folks are very, very close friends of ours - friends from university, we live in the same small town and my DH is the baby's dad's business partner - which is a long way of saying - we have a fair bit of contact with this family. Purely by luck and coincidence, it has been a week since we saw them.<br><br>
So I guess I'm looking for some reassurance that things will be ok. Or advice to seek medical care for our baby. Whatever you got, I can take it. I'm pretty good at freaking myself out so nothing you can say will freak me out more.<br><br>
Oh, and if you're so inclined, please think good thoughts for our friends and their baby. TIA.
 

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It doesn't take much for a hospital to do a spinal tap on any baby with a fever, particularly on a baby so young. Hospitals will want to do a spinal tap on any unvaxed baby with a fever; that baby (4wk old = unvaxed) is too young to have had any vax but the HepB vax.<br><br>
My #2 is 100% unvaxed and has had 3 temps of 101 or higher since six months old; we never left the house or gave a fever reducer.<br><br>
I recommend reading "Raising a Healthy Child Despite Your Doctor".
 

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i wouyld second that suggestion. thefact that the child has a fever means that he/she is fighting off an infection somewhere, be it bacterial or viral. the degree of the fever doesn't mean much either. how the child is acting would be what i wouldwatch. i doin't even have a thermometer anymore.
 

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Just wanted to mention that catching meningitis is not exactly how it works. Meningitis is actually a common bacterior or virus that has managed to get in somewhere it shouldn't be. In other words, many of us have various versions of the bugs that "cause" meningitis in our system and we aren't sick. It is only when certain barriers are crossed that the same bugs can cause a dangerous disease condition.<br><br>
You do need to do some research (hard with a small baby, isn't it?) because it is too scary nowadays to skip vaxing if you don't know your stuff.<br><br>
But good for you for refraining from vaxing a sick baby. Smart!
 

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I hope the baby of your friends is doing alright. I wonder why she had a fever? There is no vaccine that could have prevented a fever. Many doctors in the ER are young inexperienced interns and they get nervous when such a young baby is being brought in and they use the 'big guns' to cover their own butts.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I'm upset for them and really hope it is a false alarm but what I am really freaking out about is that our 5 month old is *not* vaccinated.</td>
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There is no reason for freaking out. Your 5 mo. old child is not sick and besides, she can handle a fever or some virus. She is old enough to deal with it.<br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Full disclosure: ... I freaked out before his 2 month apt and just couldn't do the vax.</td>
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You know what? That is the very best reason in the world not to inject your child. Mommy instinct. I am so glad you listened to it. Good for you.<br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">So here we are with an unvaccinated baby that I am not 100% comfortable with and now a possible meningitis exposure.</td>
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You can not be exposed to meningitis. Meningitis is a condition. It's like saying I was exposed to a broken leg. Or to a drowning.<br><br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">So I guess I'm looking for some reassurance that things will be ok.</td>
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Things will be ok. There is no problem that I can see. Many people get meningitis and you may come in contact with any of them at any time and never know that a day or even an hour later they are diagnosed with meningitis. But in order to get meningitis you have to be very sick first with some virus or bacterial infection. And meningitis (which is an inflammation from any virus or bacteria) is not something you can catch. Most people who get the same infection will not get meningitis.<br><br><br>
I am sending good thoughts to your friends baby and hope they find out what the fever is all about. Did the child get a vaccine? I am suspecting that's what it is, a vaccine reaction.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Gitti</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7933476"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">And meningitis (which is an inflammation from any virus or bacteria) is not something you can catch. Most people who get the same infection will not get meningitis.</div>
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So why do colleges say that students should get the shot if they live in the dorms? Are they just talking our of their butts?
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>i'mmykid'$mom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7933904"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">So why do colleges say that students should get the shot if they live in the dorms? Are they just talking our of their butts?</div>
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Pretty much <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">. It's not about meningitis, it's about one bug that they have a shot for. The bug normally gives you immunity, not meningitis, but if your system is compromised, carriage of the bug (ANY BUG!) may go wrong so there is a small chance of meningitis. But we can't possibly pay attention to overall health and lifestyle, too busy selling vaccine for one bug people are 'at risk' of sharing in the dorms, excluding all others <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>i'mmykid'$mom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7933904"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">So why do colleges say that students should get the shot if they live in the dorms? Are they just talking our of their butts?</div>
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Is this a shock? It is certainly not the first time nor will it be the last. There are LOTS of statements concerning VPDs that could be classified as that...<br><br>
Wish they would spend less time talking out of them and working them off creating more vaccines!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/duck.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Duck">:
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks everyone for your replies. I must apologize for the post and run earlier - after dinner we all had baths and went to bed as soon as the kids were asleep. I have anxiety issues so things like this really tire me out. Unfortunately the sleep was short-lived because both boys woke up coughing. DH sat up with DS1 and just went back to bed and I was just able to finally nurse DS2 back to sleep. As you can see from the outrageous time that I am posting this, it's been a long night. Hopefully DH stays home from work tomorrow so we can take shifts sleeping.<br><br>
So, I think in my angst-ridden earlier post I may have confused some folks with the details so I will try to clarify who the characters are in this story.<br><br>
Friend's baby (W): 4 weeks old, unvaxxed (we're in Canada, babies don't get Hep vax), had a fever, went to doctor, got sent to hospital for spinal tap. No-one knows anymore details at the moment as they haven't called anyone (and we don't want to call and bug them)<br><br>
DS1 (C): 2 years 11 months, fully vaxxed other than Hep and CP, MMR was delayed until 18 months, breastfed until 17 months when he weaned himself, has asthma (technically RAD - no official asthma diagnosis yet) and allergies that have strong genetic component, currently has a cold and developed a fever this afternoon and complained of ear pain, the fever has since burned off with lots of fluids and a bath.<br><br>
DS2 (D): 5 months, unvaxxed, exclusively breastfed, no known chronic health problems but is displaying the same symptoms that DS1 did before he was diagnosed, currently has an intermittent cough that I have attributed to either: a cold, drool (teething) or allergies/asthma.<br><br>
Neither of my children has ever been in daycare or in regular contact with large groups of children. I'm a SAHM and we are total homebodies.<br><br>
Interestingly, DS1 was far healthier in his infant days than DS2 has been. DS1 didn't get his first cold until he was 11 months and didn't have a fever until he was over 2 years old. Unfortunately, that first cold was a doozy and is where he got the RAD diagnosis. DS2 on the other hand, has had cold after cold this winter but fortunately they have passed without any major problems. I wonder if this is because DS1 was a summer baby and DS2 was a winter baby. Also, there were a lot less kids in our group of friends when DS1 was born so I guess less chance for exposure to stuff.<br><br>
immykidsmom - thank you for the pm with the links and the book rec. I will look into them in the morning.<br><br>
mom2tig - I agree. I try to watch how DS1 is acting which is why I normally wouldn't have been concerned - he was happy and active this afternoon. I'm actually not super concerned with *him* coming down with meningitis, I was more worried about DS2. It just always seems to happen that way for me - complicating factors that put my worry into overdrive.<br><br>
Deb - thanks for the explanation on how meningitis works. So, DS2 could "catch" the bacteria or virus but it wouldn't necessarily cause meningitis in him? I'm usually pretty good with medical stuff (I'm a vet tech) but sleep deprivation, baby brain and anxiety are muddling things for me a little. I totally agree I need to do some research! I've been focused on DS1's health issues (one of his allergies is dustmites <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: ) and some behaviour issues we've been having so it has been too easy to put the vaccine research on the back burner. Thanks for the pat on the back about not vaxxing when DS2 was sick. I figure if I'm going to do the vax, I should at least do it when their bodies are strong and healthy so they have a fighting chance.<br><br>
Gitti - it was the family doc that ordered the spinal tap. We are actually lucky in our town because the ER is staffed with older, experienced doctors (well, except for the UA violation that told us DS1 just had an ear infection when he had his first cold and we took him in because he couldn't breathe! Thank goodness we saw someone different when we took him back!) I also don't think they went to the ER since this was during the daytime. I would imagine they went to the pediatric ward. Thanks for the reassurance and the validation of my mommy instinct. Thanks also for the good thoughts for our friends' baby. I will let you all know when we know what caused this. It was not a vaccine. Babies in our province don't start vaccines until 8 weeks.<br><br>
So anyway, this is super huge and I thank anyone who manages to read the whole thing. It has been good therapy to sit here and type this all out and has helped to pass the time during this long, long night and has also helped distract me from thinking about my poor friends who are probably sitting up all night with their baby too.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lokidoki</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7934060"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Is this a shock? It is certainly not the first time nor will it be the last. There are LOTS of statements concerning VPDs that could be classified as that...<br><br>
Wish they would spend less time talking out of them and working them off creating more vaccines!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/duck.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Duck">:</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> No, not shocked, just wondering how the "get this shot if you live in the dorms" came to be.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Just thought I'd update - we haven't heard how the baby is doing yet other than the fact that he was admitted to hospital.<br><br>
My kids are doing fine other than having colds which kept them up most of the night.
 

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Drs esp ER Drs love to do spinal taps on young babies for "fevers". The meningitis speech MUST be brainwashed into them.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:<br><br>
Our DS had 103 fever (w/tylenol) @ 1mo old - he became listless & didn't nurse for 8+ hours.<br>
OK, I was getting concerned - off to ER we went.. 1st words were spinal tap.<br>
I said no... they looked @ me like 1 was from another planet & kept insisting.<br>
finally, it turned into a shouting match... DH was trying to explain that a bout of menin. would be rare... he was being calm... I was not...<br>
in the mean time, they gave DS a dose of tylenol & brough some pediolyte (sp?) - he still wasn't nursing but I got him to take a few sips of pedialyte.<br>
2 hrs go by... several more Drs come in & try to INSIST he gets a tap... almost like they were gonna kick us out... I tell them DS has hydronephrosis (extreme swelling) of 1 kidney & maybe that's related... they seem very pissed that DS is intact w/ 1 STUPID Intern saying, "That's your problem - he's not circ'd" - PA is VERY mainstream about everything - AP/NFL is a small minority - i've seen 1 other sling in 3 yrs....<br>
OK imagine a 5'1" tall blonde with no sleep & a sick 1 mo old.<br>
so I instruct this intern to "Get the F out of my room, ya moron"<br>
Being DH is a Cop, he tells some of the stupid Drs to leave & his DW is really pissed !!!<br>
another Dr comes in & TOTALLY ignores ME & tries to talk some sense into DH - ('cuz YK women are psycho....) I'm saying ,"um.. excuse me but I'm here"<br>
**** this is 3 hrs later from getting to ER... DS has started responding to the pedialyte & the tylenol & has started nursing.. his color is back... he's got tears when he cries, he's peeing all over me...<br>
woohoo! so this Dr turns his BACK to me & keeps taking to DH.<br>
DH lets this go about 5 mins (all the while grinning @ me) & then stops Dr talking & tell him, "Don't you dare ignore my wife & if you think this is professional.. it's not AND we decide things jointly.... & he suggested he leave our room promptly." DH said he's not gonna be responsible if he keeps pissing off his wife <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br>
another DR comes & tries playing "Good Cop" <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br>
I tell them to get a urine/blood sample 1st then get results b/f we talk spinal tap.<br>
I tell them they have 1 chance to get blood/urine & don't retract him.<br>
DH tell me to go get a soda & get a break & he'll stay with DS for the tests.<br>
I hear my baby crying.. nurses/Dr's are giving me dirty looks as I walk back..<br>
I hear DH getting mad & telling them - he doesn't need a IV right now...he's nursing, he's peeing again....<br>
I go in & it starts all over again... give this baby a few hours to nurse, rest, etc... no results were back yet. UGH... then they tell me they need to put a cath in his arm for antibiotics - "UM, what wrong with ORAL" - well our pharmacy is closed... "WTF - it's a hospital" DH says "they better open it then"<br>
then a Dr comes in & says DS has a UTI.... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: oh really - but he needs the meds... get him the oral stuff... we finally get the oral meds, get checked in a regular room. I tell them if DS is just as bad 12hrs (from when we got to ER) I'll think about a tap... next morning... my baby was fine. his 1 & only UTI ever.<br>
Just think, he could be really a mess with a tap... Taps are nasty & have HORRIBLE side effects... I don't know of any adult who didn't suffer after a tap.<br><br>
My long winded point.........<br><br>
don't worry <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/innocent.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shy"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> .....you can seem how a fever, a small infant & ER can get VERY out of hand <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/loveeyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Loveeyes">:<br><br>
BTW - DS is still unvaxed
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Is bacterial meningitis contagious?<br>
Bacterial meningitis is contagious, however, it is not easily transmittable. Indirect or casual contact (such as being in the same room with someone who is infected) is not enough to cause transmission of bacterial meningitis. Direct contact with someone who has bacterial meningitis does increase the likelihood of being exposed to it. This includes direct exposure to oral or nasal secretions, which result from the coughing or sneezing of an infected person. Therefore, good hygiene practices help prevent its transmission. Do not share eating or drinking utensils.</td>
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Is viral meningitis contagious?<br>
The viruses that cause viral meningitis are contagious. However, most people exposed to the viruses causing meningitis will not develop the disease. They may have no symptoms or develop only a cold or rash with low-grade fever. Typically, less than 1 out of 1000 persons infected actually develop meningitis. Therefore, if you are around someone who has viral meningitis, you have a moderate chance of becoming infected but a very small chance of developing meningitis.</td>
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<a href="http://www.uhs.uga.edu/healthtopics/meningitis.html" target="_blank">http://www.uhs.uga.edu/healthtopics/meningitis.html</a>
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hi everyone<br><br>
Just wanted to let you know that our friend's baby is home from the hospital and thankfully he does not have meningitis. Turns out that their whole family has strep throat.<br><br>
The poor mama has so much on her plate and is so tired. I'm going to try to cook some food for them today if *my* sick kids let me. Please continue to think good thoughts for them.<br><br>
Thank you for your help and advice - it has given me lots to think about and I will definately be doing more research so I'm not back here freaking out the next time we have an illness scare.
 

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I'm really glad the baby is ok <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">:
 
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