Posts Tagged ‘shot’

Hib vaccine for babies: Don’t miss a dose

Friday, March 20th, 2009

babyIt’s important for babies to get three doses of the vaccine Hib. On March 18, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory reminding us about this.

Hib stands for Haemophilus influenzae Type B, a type of bacteria. Hib can cause pneumonia and meningitis (a serious infection of the brain and spinal cord). Meningitis can lead to brain damage and even death.

FYI: Hib is not what causes the disease we call the flu. It’s a different bug altogether.

The CDC has learned that five young children in Minnesota got Hib. One of them died. None of the children had received the recommended three doses of the vaccine. Three of the children had not received a single dose.

So check with your child’s health care provider today, and find out if your baby is up-to-date on his Hib vaccine.

The March of Dimes has an article on immunizations for your baby. CDC has more on Hib.

U.S. federal court: No link between vaccines and autism

Friday, February 13th, 2009

gavel-smYesterday, a U.S. federal court dismissed cases from parents who claimed that vaccinations caused their children’s autism. According to NBC Nightly News, “the parents failed to show that vaccinations played any role at all in causing autism.”

While some families still fear that there may be a connection between autism and vaccines, a large body of well-done research has found no link. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the March of Dimes all recommend that children be vaccinated.

While expressing concern for children with autism and their parents, the court said the research used to support the claims was severely inadequate. In the court’s view, the medical experts testifying for the parents were poorly qualified and lacked sufficient experience. In making its decision, the court reviewed over 5,000 pages of expert testimony and 939 medical articles.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and other organizations continue to support research to better understand the causes of autism. In a statement, DHHS said that it hoped the court’s decision “will help reassure parents that vaccines do not cause autism.”

To see an earlier post and discussion on this topic, click here.

Autism and immunizations: No connection

Friday, December 12th, 2008

For many years now, some families have been worried about a possible connection between autism and childhood immunizations. One small study many years ago raised the question. But since then, better-designed and more extensive research has found no connection between autism and immunizations.

This is how science works. One study leads to another and then another, until we have a better understanding of what’s going on.

Despite the newer studies, the debate continues. Meanwhile, if children aren’t immunized, they and their communities face the risk of very serious, even life-threatening diseases like diphtheria and measles.

The actress and mother Amanda Peet is speaking out, urging parents to immunize their kids. She’s joined forces with Dr. Paul Offit, chief of infectious diseases at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

On December 11, Ms. Peet and Dr. Offit spoke to National Public Radio. Give a listen. To learn more about autism and what scientists know about the causes, read the March of Dimes fact sheet.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the March of Dimes recommend that children be immunized.