Data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) points to a growing problem: an estimated 35 million teens, in the United States alone, are missing one or more doses of childhood vaccines. This leaves these teens vulnerable to catching preventable infections as adults, when the diseases are often more serious and have […]
Guidelines have been set for many health issues. Experts are able to devote a considerable amount of time to a particular question (far more than an individual physician could ever hope to achieve), thus the benefit of many experts’ in-depth knowledge on many different questions is now available to individual families and physicians. A subcommittee […]
I am a missionary living in the Dominican Republic. Yesterday our eight-month old son received a vaccination for sarampion, which is the Spanish term for measles. My baby book says that it is better not to vaccinate for measles until after a child is 12 months old because the vaccination usually doesn’t make a child immune to the disease until after the child is a year old. Measles is quite a problem here among children and for that reason my son’s doctor requires the vaccination at eight months. The doctor, a Dominican, was trained in the States. I am curious to know, however, if you feel that it was wise for our son to have received the vaccination at the age of eight months rather than waiting until after he turns a year old and the vaccination is more effective.
Beth Veenstra – Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
Dr. Greene, I was wondering if you could be so kind to answer my question regarding whooping cough. I am a mother of 5-year-old twins. The twins were born 2 months premature. At a few months old they had their first DPT shot. They both experienced side effects when administered. Both of them cried & screamed for several hours, had a rash where the shot was given & had high fevers of around 104. I called the Doctor to tell her what was going on. She told me that they were reacting to the “P” part of the DPT shot. Since then they have not been given the “P” part of the DPT immunization. I am very concerned about my kids. Currently there is an epidemic in California where young children have died from this disease. Please tell me whatever you can about pertussis. Being that my children are now 5 years old in your opinion can my children pickup the “P” part of DPT now? What are the actual side effects of this immunization? Your response is greatly appreciated.
When should the measles vaccine be given? How effective is it?
Pertussis is commonly known as whooping cough. Pertussis is caused by bacteria that attach themselves to the cilia (little hairs) that line the respiratory tract. These bacteria produce a potent toxin that inflames the respiratory tract and that prevents the cilia from functioning properly.
Introduction: Your home calms at night, the children are tucked into bed – but then loud coughing replaces the silence. It’s impressive that a body so small can cough so loud. What is a cough? Coughing is an important part of the body’s defense system. It forcefully propels unwanted invaders up and out of the […]
Related concepts: Whooping cough, Bordatella pertussis Introduction to pertussis: I stood outside the closed door of the hospital room where an adorable 6-week-old baby lay all alone in her crib. As I scrubbed my hands in the sink outside the isolation room, an electronic monitor allowed me to hear her breathing peacefully. Suddenly the quiet […]
Chicken pox is caused by the Varicella-zoster virus. It is usually a mild infection, and not life-threatening. Although children with this virus may be miserable for several days, and miss a week of school or day-care (stranding parents at home), they will likely recover from the 250-500 itchy blisters with nothing more to show for […]
I am currently trying to assess whether or not to vaccinate my 15 month old and 3 year old for chickenpox. Can you give me the pros and cons? What are you recommending to your patients? Everyone I talk to seems to have a different opinion.
Leslie Jacobs – San Carlos, California
Prevention of any disease is what you want to do for your children. You want to give them the best life possible. Physicians know that the HPV (human papilloma virus) causes many diseases. And HPV vaccinations (like Gardasil) can prevent most of them.
Each year the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) makes recommendations about who should get the influenza vaccine. The focus of the flu shot campaign among healthy people has been on people aged 65 and older, because they have been considered to be at the highest risk for flu-related complications and hospitalization. However, it turns […]
RSV, or Respiratory Syncytial Virus, is the most important respiratory organism of early childhood. RSV occurs throughout the world, and in each location it tends to occur in yearly winter outbreaks. In the northern hemisphere the peak of the epidemic is usually in January, February, or March, although in some years it may begin earlier […]
Should all 11 and 12 year old girls be vaccinated against sexually transmitted human papillomavirus (HPV)? Michigan appears poised to be the first state to enact this requirement for all girls entering middle school (though parents could opt out for religious or medical reasons). Many other states are likely to follow suit quickly.
Introduction to chickenpox: Chickenpox is one of the classic childhood diseases. A young child covered in pox and out of school for a week is a typical scene. The first half of the week feels miserable from itching; the second half miserable from boredom. Since the introduction of the chickenpox vaccine, classic chickenpox is becoming […]