Chicken Pox vaccine info and other stuff (long)

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Hello everyone! Seems like I have been away from here for weeks. Busy, busy. Remember the post quite a while ago about vacinnes? I mentioned how our pediatrician wanted my kids to get the chicken pox vaccine because my son has asthma. Some of you (in particular L&Mojoe and NaomiR) asked me to find out more. My kids had their yearly well child check up yesterday so I asked the doctor more about this. Basically it is the same thing that barb1123 said in that discussion previously. If your child gets the chicken pox and would have to take steroids (for asthma or allergies) this would case the chicken pox to go wild and be very severe. Last year, when both of my kids got the vaccine, they were only giving it to kids who had special reasons to get it (like asthma....). This year he said they are now routinely giving it because they found out now that it last a life time. Now, that doesn't mean you *won't* get the chicken pox but if you do it is much milder. I had never known that people die from the chicken pox. So if your child has asthma you may want to ask your doctor about this. It is a live vacinne so it is possible to actually get the chicken pox from it. Both my kids had no problems with it.

Our son who is 5 is due for his booster vaccinations. We did not do them yesterday because we wanted to give this some thought. He has had all of his baby shots with no reactions and is due for the boosters for MMR, DTaP and IPV. They said they do it one in one arm and two in the other. This seems to be so many vaccines at one time! It seems that it wouldn't be good to do that. Now when I read about autism possibly linked to the MMR it is scary. I had heard about bad reactions (brain swelling) to the DTP. Would the DTaP be safer? Is this threat of autism only for babies and not older children like my son? So many things to worry about.

On a happier note, the doctor said he recently read somewhere that peanut allergies are not necessarily life long. He said that is what they always thought but that idea is changing. Some people do stop having allergic reactions to peanuts. The same is true with egg. We were told 4 years ago that egg is usually life long. The doctor said that isn't always true either. He is not an allergist and had no other info on how or why this is. It does give hope.

Tracy

[This message has been edited by ihatepeanuts (edited August 04, 2000).]

On Aug 4, 2000

Tracy, I had both of my children vaccinated against chicken pox despite the fact that in Ontario you have to pay for the vaccine whereas you don't have to pay for the other vaccines. I didn't even take into account their asthma. I do get them a flu shot now because of their asthma and I know that I have to ask the doctor if they should also be getting a pneumonia shot also because of the asthma. I know that my son is also due for his 5 year old shots and that is something I have been told to book in a couple of weeks. I know that there are a lot of negative things about all vaccines but the only one that really stands out for me is the vaccine for Hepatitis "B" which children get here at the age of 12. I saw a show on that, 20/20 or Dateline, and it was horrible. Based on what I saw on that show, I decided not to have my kids vaccinated for that until I was legally required to do so. The chicken pox vaccine I simply got because I thought it should be part of the measles, mumps, rubella thing and I saw an ad showing how many children are hospitalized per year due to complications from chicken pox. I thought mine would probably be the ones that ended up in hospital from it! And I didn't even know about the asthma connection. Good thread, thanks for posting your information!

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On Aug 4, 2000

I didn't get my son his 4-yr-old MMR because of the same concerns with autism. It seems like it is probably not related, but until they come up with something more positive, I am holding off.

DTaP is safer than DTP. I think there's lots of evidence of that. My kids have had no problem with it, whereas my son sort of reacted (crying all day, high pitched) with his first DTP. However, at my son's 4-yr checkup, I only got him the DT because at the age of 4, pertussis is not the danger it is as an infant. My pediatrician said that adults have pertussis all the time, but never know it--just looks like a cold--and that by the time a child is 2, he is capable if fighting it off without any problems. I also read somewhere (only one place--never saw it corroborated anywhere else) that kids with milk allergy shouldn't get the pertussis component of the DTP or DTaP.

Also, I spaced out the DT and IPV just because it made me feel better. He got the IPV about 6 months later. As for chickenpox, my kids both got the actual disease.

On Aug 4, 2000

Cindy - I have a 13 year old son who was supposed to be vaccinated against Hep B last year in Grade 7. I must have seen the same show you did because I refused the vaccination. I simply wrote a note to the school requesting he not have the needle, and it was no problem at all. I don't think it will become legally required for quite some time, if at all.

Everyone - I read an interesting theory about vaccines and how they might be causing an increase in severe allergic reactions. Seems that the immune system is a busybody, and if it's not fighting bacteria or disease, then it will start wreaking havoc in the allergy department. Since our kids are almost all immunized against most serious diseases, the immune system has no work to do. Plus, lots of us love antibacterial everything (soap, lotion, mouthwash, etc.) so this means the immune system doesn't encounter even minor or beneficial bacteria.

Having said all that, I have an appointment next Wed. to have my 4 month old daughter vaccinated (2nd DPT). I know more and more people are questioning vaccines, and it is a really hot topic, so I hope that you can take the above information with a grain of salt and forgive me for going off topic. I wondered about the chicken pox vaccine for my 3 year old PA daughter, and after reading the above posts, I think I will go for it, considering the awful alternative of complications due to her allergy.

On Oct 24, 2000

Hi everyone,

I guess this is an "old" thread but I have something to add to this. My older daughter who is NOT PA was part of the chickenpox vaccine trial study and was vaccinated against it almost 3 years ago. Well so much for the vaccine, it looks like she has chickenpox (there have been several children in the JK class down with it). My big concern now is that Wade who has asthma and PA was supposed to get his chickenpox vaccine after his 2nd flu shot (they give the flu shot in 2 doses for smaller children) now it looks like it will be too little too late. How concerned should I be about this?? I have to say that I am annoyed with my doctor as I had requested that Wade receive the vaccine last year (after reading about potential problems here) and he refused stating that only people with weak immune systems should be vaccinated! I think I'll have a word or two for him when I take Lauren in for confirmation. One more thing, with my oldest daughter, chickenpox began on her chest. In Lauren's case it has started on her upper arm and it it the distinctive tiny blisters compounded with general malaise, runny nose and cough. Has anyone else had this happen?

Thanks all, you're the best! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Regards,

Katiee (Wade, Lauren and Emma's mom...lol)

On Oct 24, 2000

Cayley's Mom, thank-you for the info. you directed to me re the Hepatitis "B" shot. Since we basically live in the same place, when the time comes, if I still feel the same way, I will do the same thing, unless it becomes law by then. I do know that both of my kids are due for their annual flu shots again. Jesse did have his 5 year old shots and he was fine. Oh, and your post to me was made on the night that I abruptly went off-line! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/biggrin.gif[/img] Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

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On Oct 24, 2000

Thanks for bringing the thread back up Katiee, I'd almost forgotten about it! I spoke to my Dr. last week about the chickenpox vaccine, and he said he has only immunized children with weakened immune systems (eg. receiving chemotherapy). He said he would give Cayley the shot, if I asked him to, but that he wouldn't recommend it himself. Apparently there is no way of knowing how long immunity lasts, or if it will even work. After reading your post I can see it doesn't work, or at least wears off, in some cases. It's supposed to lessen the severity of the chickenpox, even if it doesn't completely work - are you finding it's a mild case?

I decided not to give Cayley the shot after all, because aside from the PA, she is very healthy (well, we're battling strep throat right now). The Dr. didn't seem to think she was at risk for complications, since she doesn't suffer from asthma or (severe) environmental allergies. I hope I'm making the right decision, but I guess it's a gamble. Take care, Carolyn

On Oct 24, 2000

Just a quick comment on the severity of chicken pox after the vaccine... my son had the shot in Dec. a couple of years ago..in May he had chicken pox. They were everywhere. In his case they were as bad as someone who didn't have the shot.

On Oct 25, 2000

hi- I have a 3 year old and an 11 month old...we have lived in 2 states on opposite coasts in the past 2 years and in both places, chicken pox vaccine is givin to all kids right from the start unless you ask not to have it ( as with any vaccine, that is your right). Neither of my children have suffered any effects that I know of....I found out thru a blood test last year that I have no immunity to chicken pox so I will be getting the vaccine for myself as well. Both my kids and I suffer with eczema and I can't begin to imagine what chicken pox would do ...I am guessing I would need a constant flow of valium and a straight jacket to keep from tearing myself apart! Our neighbors 12 year old son died last year from complications of chicken pox ( respiratory failure). It came on so fast, he didn't even make it to the hospital. I know that is not really common, but it surely made me think about it a lot more, seeing it happen to someone you know. Jen

On Oct 25, 2000

(edited)

On Oct 26, 2000

Just a couple of added thoughts here...If life-long immunity is in question with regard to the chickenpox vaccine, would that not be solved by administering a "booster" at some point? As to the issue of pregnant women contracting the disease, when I was pregnant with my first child (almost 12 years ago) I developped "shingles" which is a recurance of the chickenpox virus manifested in a different way. At NO time did anyone, including my OB indicate that my baby could be in danger. My daughter was born perfectly healthy.

Regards,

Katiee (Wade's mom)

On Oct 26, 2000

(edited)

On Oct 26, 2000

(edited),Geez, after reading your post I feel like I did when I first started coming to this site when it first opened up and found out that all the PB I ate during my pregnancy and nursing may have caused my son's allergy to be more severe- I am so frustrated at doctors and finding out things like this after the fact- Of course my son is already vaccinated....;Anyway, my point is I would like to know if there is a website, or if you could email me more info on vaccines and the potential dangers(my son is 2yrs 9 months old and has had all his 'required vaccines'. DId I damage his nerves? I know, I know I am an admitted hypochondriac, anyway.... Thanks

On Oct 28, 2000

I'm curious about where most of you are from. In TN and KY, chickenpox has been added to the list of mandatory vaccines for school and for all children born after August 1998 to enter daycare (unless they've had the disease). We did not have our 2 year old vaccinated at 12 months, but will probably do so soon due to the possible complications, including Shingles.

But, some thoughts. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I read a study somewhere that said this same vaccine has been used in Japan for 15 - 20 years, with no loss of immunity. It just took the FDA years longer to approve the vaccine.

Also, FYI - having Chicken Pox does NOT necessarily provide lifelong immunity. My brother had the disease at age 8, then again at 16. Fortunately, there were no complications in his case.

On Oct 28, 2000

I live in TN and both of my children are not vaccinated for the chicken pox. When is was first made available for my older son I considered it and then asked my pediatrician if she gave it to her son (same age as mine). She said, "NO." That was clear enough for me to realize that I didn't want it at this time. I am a stay at home mom and am homeschooling so I do not have to worry about the regulations. I plan on having him vaccinated if he does not naturally get chicken pox in the next couple of years or if his asthma gets worse.

On Oct 28, 2000

F.Y.I... I had my PA son vaccinated for chicken pox mainly because of my severe bout with it as a child. He seems to me to be "immune compromised." He gets sick often and if anyone's going to get the germs, it's always him! I think that being an allergic person is why. That's my theory. Anyway, my trouble with chicken pox was a "post-viral" infection - encephalitis. Basically, a swollen brain. 1/3 of people die with this infection, 1/3 are brain damaged and 1/3 come out of it just fine. I thank God often that I was in that last group. This is where most of the serious complications and/or deaths from chicken pox virus occur - not really with the spots themselves.

On Oct 30, 2000

Just one more thing on the Hib vaccine. It is given to newborns in the hospital now in CA unless you specifically refuse it. It was also REQUIRED for kindergarden in our school district. Also, I ran across some info on thimerisol- this is the mercury preservative that is in some vaccines, specifically Hib. The article stated low birthweight and preemie baby's should postpone this vaccine as it would expose them to too much mercury for their little systems. Guess you have to do more than avoid swordfish if you want to minimize mercury exposure for your kid.

On Dec 8, 2000

Wow! I had no idea this thread was still going on. I've been gone from this site for so long. Since my initial post I started doing research about vaccines. I had tried to do this when my first child was a baby to find out if we should vaccinate or not. I went to the library....tried to find info and came up with very little. Basically all I had to go on was what my doctor told me. I did not have the internet at the time. Well, as I said in the first post of this topic, my son is at the age to get his booster shots. My daughter had them. I began researching on the internet and have read 3 books about vaccines. These last couple of months have been very difficult for me. I have been in major tears numerous times. I am so terrible angry with my doctor (I am actually tearing up as I type this). Why do they tell us that vaccines are the best thing for our babies and children? You would not believe how much money has been put into vaccines and that is a major reason why they are pushed even though the government *knows* for a fact that children will die from them or have life long problems. Here is an interesting quote from one of the books: "Asthma has steadily increased since the introduction of vaccines. Critics of vaccines say the dramatic rise in ear infections, allergies and asthma can be attributed, at least in part, to the damaging effects of vaccines weakening the immune system." Interesting. There was more comments in the books about the link to allergies. Also, notice that vaccines *weaken* the immune system. Just the opposite of what we are led to believe. I keep telling myself that I had all of my shots as a baby. So did my husband. We are all fine. My kids had no reactions But the one that really bothers me is the chicken pox vaccine. This is fairly new and the possible long term effects make me so sick. I look at my kids and think how I let them put that garbage in them. O.K. I don't mean to offend. I know that vacinnes are a hot topic. I am stating what I feel personally. Don't you think that the American public should be told that the chicken pox vaccine causes cancer in laborator animals?! How can they be injecting this into our babies!! Also the vaccine itself can cause shingles. It's a tough call, I know. I read about horrible effects of getting chicken pox and having asthma medications so it's so hard to know what to do. I just feel that we should be completely informed about what is in the vaccines and what they actually do inside the body now and later on and we are *not* being told this. It's a crime! Do any of you know what is actually in the vaccines? I never did and I just let it happen because I thought it was the right thing to do. I now know otherwise and I am angry at myself too. There is no way my son is getting his booster shots! Please read about vaccines. Do not just take your doctors word that they are the best for our children. The 3 books I read I got from my library (2 were on interlibrary loan). I took many notes on all 3 books and have a big notebook full of info. The books are:

"The Vaccine Guide: Making An Informed Choice" by Randall Neustaedter OMD

"What Every Parent Should Know About Childhood Immunization" by Jamie Murphy

"DPT: A Shot In The Dark" by Harris Coulter

If you want a good website for a start in your search check out "The 10 Myths of Vaccinations" at: [url="http://www.unc.edu/~aphillip/www/chf/index.htm"]http://www.unc.edu/~aphillip/www/chf/index.htm[/url]

I wish so much that someone would have told me about this 8 years ago......but no one did. I hope that this info will help someone. O.K. I'll get off my soapbox now. I guess this was somewhat of a vent that has been needing to come for awhile now. Thanks to any who listened. My apologies that this is off topic from PA.

[This message has been edited by ihatepeanuts (edited December 09, 2000).]

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