Monday, June 15, 2009

The HIB vaccine

The last time Thumper was at the pedi's office, we wanted to get the combo HIB + Hep B vaccine because it had the same amount of aluminum as just a straight Hep B vaccine. However, the pedi didn't carry it! So we ended up getting another does of Polio.

I finally had some time to research what they did offer. Apparently the combo HIB+HepB (Combvax) had a recall a year or two ago. I guess just as well we don't get it.

I then started looking into what shots Thumper actually had to still receive. It turned out that we only have MMR, HepB, and HIB. Plus more catchup shots at 4. There are so many combo vaccines out there and it turned my head for awhile trying to figure out which combo was the best since I'm trying to minimize shots and aluminum in shots.

Dr Sear's Alternative Vaccine schedule has you get HIB before 1. Since we'd been doing just one vaccine per wellness visit, and I deemed Pc and DTaP more important, it just happened that we havn't gotten around to HIB till now. I did some reading and Minnesota had some incidents recently. But otherwise HIB incidents is really low since they introduced the vaccine.

Looking over CDC's Catchup Immunization schedule I realized that we actually only need *1* shot of HIB because Thumper is over 15 months old! So that made me really happy. I finally decided to just go w/ the ActHIB that the pedi offers since we only need one shot and it has no aluminum in it at all. Since menigits is so serious and I'm already mostly done w/ DTaP and Polio, AND I still want to wait for MMR till later, I thought I'll just get this shot now instead of when Thumper's 4, as part of combo shot w/ DTaP and Polio. The third reason is that the reason why the rates are done IS because of the vaccines I do want to get it to keep the herd immunity going for everyone else.

My feelings are mixed about this. One the way hand, I'm really really happy that we only need one shot. And I know logically that the rates are really low. And because we don't do day-care I'm more at ease w/ my choice. On the other hand, you think about how you're really just playing odds and if the odds aren't in your favor, the more dire consequences is really hard to swallow. I read some heart-breaking cases where parents said they wish their kid had the vaccine cuz their kid died from it. There's the logical and rational side that reminds me that my decision to not vaccinate till now IS okay. But there's always that emotional "what-if" that tugs at you, making you doubt your decision.

But, ultimately, I think for the next kid, I will probably do the same thing. Except maybe this time we'll get it straight at 15 months. Since as a second kid, the chances of infection are bigger w/ the older kid going to school and such.

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