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Immunizations Recommended for Children and Adolescents

What immunizations are recommended for children and adolescents?

Ask your doctor what shots your child should get. The immunization schedule includes vaccines for:

Chickenpoxroutine_baby_vaccines
Diphtheria
Tetanus
Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
Measles
Mumps
Rubella
Polio
Tuberculosis

Chickenpox:
Chickenpox, also known as varicella, is a highly contagious and self-limited infection that most commonly affects children between 5-10 years of age. The disease has a worldwide distribution and is reported throughout the year in regions of temperate climate. The peak incidence is generally during the months of March through May. Lifelong immunity for chickenpox generally follows the disease. If the patient’s immune system does not totally clear the body of the virus, it may retreat to skin sensory nerve cell bodies where it is protected from the patient’s immune system. The disease shingles (also known as “zoster”) represents release of these viruses down the length of the skin nerve fiber and produces a characteristic painful rash. Shingles is most commonly a disease of adults.

NOTE! Reye’s Syndrome, a deadly disease has been heavily linked with this virus. Learn More.

Learn More about Managing Chickenpox in Children
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Diphtheria
Diphtheria is a contagious infectious disease that primarily affects the upper respiratory tract (respiratory diphtheria), and it is characterized by sore throat, fever, and an adherent membrane (pseudomembrane) on the tonsils and nasopharynx. Diphtheria can also affect the skin and cause localized skin infections (cutaneous diphtheria). Severe infection with diphtheria can lead to systemic involvement and can affect other organ systems as well, such as the heart and nervous system, sometimes leading to death. Diphtheria is caused by the bacterium Corynebacterium diphtheriae.

Transmission occurs via inhalation of airborne respiratory secretions or by direct contact with infected nasopharyngeal secretions or skin wounds. Rarely, infection can be spread by contact with objects contaminated by an infected person.

Risk factors for the development of diphtheria include absent or incomplete immunization against diphtheria, overcrowded and/or unsanitary living conditions, a compromised immune system, and travel to areas where the disease is endemic, especially in individuals who have not obtained booster shots (vaccine).

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Tetanus
Tetanus is a disease caused by a bacterial infection. The bacteria make a toxin, or poison, that causes severe muscle spasms. Tetanus can be very dangerous, but you can get a shot to prevent it. Tetanus is also called “lockjaw” because muscle spasms in your jaw make it hard to open your mouth. Tetanus also causes seizures and makes it hard for you to swallow or breathe.

In the United States, most people have had shots to prevent tetanus, so the disease is relatively rare. People who have never been immunized or haven’t had a booster in the last 10 years are more likely to get tetanus. This includes people who recently moved to the U.S. from countries where tetanus shots are rare.

If you never had tetanus shots as a child, or if you’re not sure if you had them, you’ll need to get 3 tetanus shots in about a 1-year time span. After that, 1 booster shot every 10 years will work for you.

Get a tetanus shot as soon as possible if you have a dirty cut or wound and 5 or more years have passed since your last tetanus shot.

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Whooping Cough
Whooping cough (pertussis) is a disease that causes very severe coughing that may last for months. During bursts of violent coughing, you may make a noise that sounds like a “whoop” when you try to take a breath. You can cough so hard that you hurt a rib.

Whooping cough spreads easily from one person to another. Getting the pertussis vaccine can help you avoid the disease, make it less severe, and prevent you from spreading it to those who are at risk for more serious problems.

With good care, most people recover from whooping cough with no problems. But severe coughing spells can decrease the blood’s oxygen supply and lead to other problems, such as pneumonia. The illness can be dangerous in older adults and young children, especially babies who aren’t old enough to have had the pertussis vaccine.

July 19, 2012 — Whooping cough cases could be headed toward a 50-year high in the United States, and the CDC says the nation is on track for record rates of the disease.

Twice as many cases have been reported so far this year as at the same point last year, a CDC official said today.

Nationwide, nearly 18,000 cases of whooping cough, or pertussis, and nine deaths have been reported in 2012, Anne Schuchat, MD, director of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, told reporters.

More than 3,000 cases have been reported in Washington State alone, where health officials have declared a whooping cough epidemic.

Pregnant women and anyone else likely to come into contact with young babies are being urged to get booster shots to prevent whooping cough, even if they have been vaccinated in the past.

That’s because babies are most likely to die or be hospitalized when they get the highly contagious bacterial disease, which is named for the characteristic cough that accompanies it.

“All of the whooping cough fatalities that have occurred this year have been among babies who were too young to be fully vaccinated”, Schuchat said. “We would need to go back to 1959 to find as many cases reported by this time in the year.”

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Measles
Measles, also known as rubeola, is one of the most contagious infectious diseases, with at least a 90% secondary infection rate in susceptible domestic contacts. It can affect people of all ages, despite being considered primarily a childhood illness. Measles is marked by prodromal fever, cough, coryza, conjunctivitis, and pathognomonic enanthem (ie, Koplik spots), followed by an erythematous maculopapular rash on the third to seventh day. Infection confers life-long immunity. Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) is a rare chronic degenerative disease that occurs several years after measles infection.

Globally, measles remains one of the leading causes of death in young children. According to the CDC, measles caused an estimated 197,000 deaths worldwide in 2007.

Case-fatality rates are higher among children younger than 5 years. The highest fatality rates are among infants aged 4-12 months and in children who are immunocompromised because of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection or other causes.

Complications of measles are more likely to occur in persons younger than 5 years or older than 20 years, and morbidity and mortality are increased in persons with immune deficiency disorders, malnutrition, vitamin A deficiency, and inadequate vaccination.

Croup, encephalitis, and pneumonia are the most common causes of death associated with measles. Measles encephalitis, a rare but serious complication, has a 10% mortality.

Unvaccinated males and females are equally susceptible to infection by the measles virus. Excess mortality following acute measles has been observed among females at all ages, but it is most marked in adolescents and young adults.

Despite the highest recorded immunization rates in history, young children who are not appropriately vaccinated may experience more than a 60-fold increase in risk of disease due to exposure to imported measles cases from countries that have not yet eliminated the disease.

The peak incidence of infection occurs during late winter and spring. Infection is transmitted via respiratory droplets, which can remain active and contagious, either airborne or on surfaces, for up to 2 hours. Initial infection and viral replication occur locally in tracheal and bronchial epithelial cells.

After 2-4 days, measles virus infects local lymphatic tissues, perhaps carried by pulmonary macrophages. Following the amplification of measles virus in regional lymph nodes, a predominantly cell-associated viremia disseminates the virus to various organs prior to the appearance of rash.

Supportive care is normally all that is required for patients with measles. Vitamin A supplementation during acute measles significantly reduces risks of morbidity and mortality.

Learn More About Measles and Your Child

Mumps
Mumps is a disease, usually of children, caused by a virus. With mumps, your salivary glands swell. Specifically, these are the parotid glands, and they are located below and in front of each ear.

The virus is spread by direct contact with an infected person’s sneeze or cough. Humans are the only known natural hosts. The disease is more severe if you get it as an adult.

With nearly universal immunization in childhood, there are fewer than 1,000 cases of mumps per year. Most of the reported cases are in children 5-14 years of age. The infection is more common during late winter and spring.

Learn More

Rubella (German Measles)
Rubella is a very contagious, easily spread illness caused by the rubella virus. It is usually a mild illness. But in rare cases, it may cause more serious problems.

If you are pregnant and get infected with the rubella virus, your baby (fetus) could become infected too. This can cause birth defects, including serious defects known as congenital rubella syndrome (CRS). CRS can cause hearing loss, eye problems, heart problems, and other complications.

Rubella also is called German measles or 3-day measles.

The rubella virus most often is spread through droplets of fluid from the mouth, nose, or eyes of someone who has the infection. A person who has the infection can spread these droplets by coughing, sneezing, talking, or sharing food or drinks. You can get infected by touching something that has the droplets on it and then touching your eyes, nose, or mouth before washing your hands.

If you have rubella, you are most likely to spread it a few days before the rash starts until 5 to 7 days after the rash first appears. But you can spread the virus even if you don’t have any symptoms.

If you’ve had rubella, it is very unlikely that you will get it again.

Learn More

Polio
Polio is an infectious disease caused by polioviruses that can result in symptoms ranging from none to lifelong disability or death. Risk factors are highest for those people unvaccinated against polio, young children, immunosuppressed people, pregnant females, those people living or traveling in areas where polio is endemic, and polio patient caregivers.

Polio symptoms first begin like any other viral illness; progressive symptoms include muscle discomfort and muscle paralysis with late symptoms of muscle atrophy, weakness, extremity disfigurement, and breathing problems in some patients.

People who have risk factors or symptoms should seek medical care immediately.

Diagnosis of polio is made by clinical observation of symptoms and by tests that detect the polio viruses in samples taken from the patient.
There is no medical cure for polio; medical treatment is designed to reduce symptoms.

There are many surgical methods used to help relieve symptoms of polio (mainly bone, joint, and muscle modifications).

Prevention of polio is possible with appropriate vaccination treatments; avoiding contact with polio viruses by good hygiene and avoiding areas where polio is endemic also help prevent polio.

The prognosis for most people who are infected by the polio viruses is good, but those few patients who develop paralytic polio have a prognosis ranging from good to poor, depending on the severity of infection.

Learn More

Tuberculosis (TB)
All cases of TB are passed from person to person via droplets. When someone with TB infection coughs, sneezes, or talks, tiny droplets of saliva or mucus are expelled into the air, which can be inhaled by another person.

Once infectious particles reach the alveoli (small saclike structures in the air spaces in the lungs), another cell, called the macrophage, engulfs the TB bacteria.

Then the bacteria are transmitted to the lymphatic system and bloodstream and spread to other organs occurs. The bacteria further multiply in organs that have high oxygen pressures, such as the upper lobes of the lungs, the kidneys, bone marrow, and meninges — the membrane-like coverings of the brain and spinal cord.

Tuberculosis continues to be a major health problem worldwide. In 2008, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that one-third of the global population was infected with TB bacteria:
— 8.8 million new cases of TB developed.
— 1.6 million people died of this disease in 2005.
— Each person with untreated active TB will infect on average 10-15 people each year.
— A new infection occurs every second.

In 2009, the TB rate in the United States was 3.8 cases per 100,000 population, a slight decrease from the prior year. Four states (California, Florida, New York, and Texas) accounted for the majority of all new TB cases (50.3%).

With the spread of AIDS, tuberculosis continues to lay waste to large populations. The emergence of drug-resistant organisms threatens to make this disease once again incurable.

In 1993, the WHO declared tuberculosis a global emergency.

Learn More

NOTE: Never give a child under the age of 19 aspirin or aspirin products without first talking to your doctor because you could trigger a deadly disease known as Reye’s Syndrome.

More Information:

On WordPress:
https://reyessyndrome.wordpress.com/category/vaccinations/pandemics-a-case-for-vaccinations/
https://reyessyndrome.wordpress.com/category/vaccinations/about-vaccinations/

PDF Downloads & Handouts:
Who Should NOT be Vaccinated: http://www.reyessyndrome.org/pdfs/Vaccines_ VPD-VAC_Who Should NOT Get Vaccinated_.pdf
Vaccination and Milestone Tracker: http://www.reyessyndrome.org/pdfs/CDC_milestones-tracker.pdf
Immunizations Record – 7 – 18 Years of Age: http://www.reyesyndrome.org/pdfs/CDC_parent-version-schedule-7-18yrs.pdf
Immunizations Record – 7 – 18 Years of Age – Spanish Version: http://www.reyessyndrome.org/pdfs/CDC_parent-version-schedule-7-18yrs-sp.pdf
Vaccine Information Statement: http://www.reyessyndrome.org/pdfs/CDC_Vaccination_Statement.pdf
You Can Prevent These 8 Diseases: http://www.reyessyndrome.org/pdfs/vaccines_can_prevent_8_diseases.pdf

Other Resources:
What is a Vaccine: http://www.niaid.nih.gov/topics/vaccines/understanding/Pages/whatVaccine.aspx
Vaccine Resources at CDC: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/index.html
Reye’s Syndrome: http://www.reyessyndrome.org
CDC Vaccine Video, Get The Picture: http://www.cdc.gov/CDCTV/GetThePicture/index.html

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Childhood Vaccines Can Prevent These 8 Diseases

Childhood Vaccines Can Prevent These 8 Diseases

Diphtheria
Signs and symptoms include a thick covering in the back of the throat that can make it hard to breathe.childhood_vaccines_can_prevent_these_8_diseases
Diphtheria can lead to breathing problems, and heart failure.

Tetanus (Lockjaw)
Signs and symptoms include painful tightening of the muscles, usually all over the body.
Tetanus can lead to stiffness of the jaw so victims can’t open their mouth or swallow.

Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
Signs and symptoms include violent coughing spells that can make it hard for a baby to eat, drink, or breathe. These spells can last for weeks.
Pertussis can lead to pneumonia, seizures, and brain damage.

Hib (Haemophilus influenzae type b)
Signs and symptoms can include trouble breathing. There may not be any signs or symptoms in mild cases.
Hib can lead to (infection of the brain and spinal cord coverings); pneumonia; infections of the blood, joints, bones, and covering of the heart; brain damage; and deafness.

Hepatitis B
Signs and symptoms can include tiredness, diarrhea and vomiting, jaundice (yellow skin or eyes), and pain in muscles, joints and stomach. But usually there are no signs or symptoms at all.
Hepatitis B can lead to liver damage, and liver cancer.

Polio
Signs and symptoms can include flu-like illness, or there may be no signs or symptoms at all.
Polio can lead to paralysis (can’t move an arm or leg).

Pneumococcal Disease
Signs and symptoms include fever, chills, cough, and chest pain.
Pneumococcal disease can lead to meningitis (infection of the brain and spinal cord coverings), blood infections, ear infections, pneumonia, deafness, and brain damage.

Rotavirus
Signs and symptoms include watery diarrhea (sometimes severe), vomiting, fever, and stomach pain.
Rotavirus can lead to dehydration and hospitalization.
Any of these diseases can lead to death.

How do babies catch these diseases?

Usually from contact with other children or adults who are already infected, sometimes without even knowing they are infected. A mother with Hepatitis B infection can also infect her baby at birth. Tetanus enters the body through a cut or wound; it is not spread from person to person.

Download a Handout

More Resources:

What is a Vaccine: http://www.niaid.nih.gov/topics/vaccines/understanding/Pages/whatVaccine.aspx
Vaccine Resources at CDC: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/index.html
Reye’s Syndrome: http://www.reyessyndrome.org
CDC Vaccine Video, Get The Picture: http://www.cdc.gov/CDCTV/GetThePicture/index.html
CDC: Vaccinations

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What Are Vaccinations?

How Vaccines Work:
Vaccines help make you immune to serious diseases without getting sick first. Without a vaccine, you must actually get a disease in order to become immune to the germ that causes it. Vaccines work best when they are given at certain ages. For example, children don’t receive measles vaccine until they are at least one year old. If it is given earlier it might not work as well. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention publishes a schedule for childhood vaccines from birth to 18 years of age.

Understanding the difference between vaccines, vaccinations, and immunizations can be tricky. Below is an easy guide that explains how these terms are used:

A vaccine is a product that produces immunity from a disease and can be administered through needle injections, by mouth, or by aerosol.

A vaccination is the injection of a killed or weakened organism that produces immunity in the body against that organism.

An immunization is the process by which a person or animal becomes protected from a disease. Vaccines cause immunization, and there are also some diseases that cause immunization after an individual recovers from the disease.

Vaccines are held to the highest standard of safety. The United States currently has the safest, most effective vaccine supply in history. Vaccines undergo a rigorous and extensive evaluation program to determine a product’s safety and effectiveness. If a vaccine does receive approval by FDA, it is continuously monitored for safety and effectiveness.

Vaccine Benefits: Why get vaccinated?

Diseases have injured and killed many children over the years in the United States. Polio paralyzed about 37,000 and killed about 1,700 every year in the 1950s.

Hib disease was once the leading cause of bacterial meningitis in children under 5 years of age. About 15,000 people died each year from diphtheria before there was a vaccine. Up to 70,000 children a year were hospitalized because of rotavirus disease. Hepatitis B can cause liver damage and cancer in 1 child out of 4 who are infected, and tetanus kills 1 out of every 5 who get it.

Thanks mostly to vaccines, these diseases are not nearly as common as they used to be. But they have not disappeared, either. Some are common in other countries, and if we stop vaccinating they will come back here. This has already happened in some parts of the world. When vaccination rates go down, disease rates go up.

Precautions

Most babies can safely get vaccines. But some babies should not get certain vaccines. Your doctor will help you decide.

  • A child who has ever had a serious reaction, such as a life-threatening allergic reaction, after a vaccine dose should not get another dose of that vaccine. Tell your doctor if your child has any severe allergies, or has had a severe reaction after a prior vaccination. (Serious reactions to vaccines and severe allergies are rare.)
  • A child who is sick on the day vaccinations are scheduled might be asked to come back for them.

Talk to your doctor…

  • before getting DTaP vaccine, if your child ever had any of these reactions after a dose of DTaP:
  • A brain or nervous system disease within 7 days,
  • Non-stop crying for 3 hours or more,
  • A seizure or collapse,
  • A fever of over 105°F.
  • before getting Polio vaccine, if your child has a life-threatening allergy to the antibiotics neomycin, streptomycin or polymyxin B.
  • before getting Hepatitis B vaccine, if your child has a life-threatening allergy to yeast.
  • before getting Rotavirus Vaccine, if your child has:
  • SCID (Severe Combined Immunodeficiency),
  • A weakened immune system for any other reason,
  • Digestive problems,
  • Recently gotten a blood transfusion or other blood product,
  • Ever had intussusception (bowel obstruction that is treated in a hospital).
  • before getting PCV13 or DTaP vaccine, if your child ever had a severe reaction after any vaccine containing diphtheria toxoid (such as DTaP).

Risks

Vaccines can cause side effects, like any medicine.  Most vaccine reactions are mild: tenderness, redness, or swelling where the shot was given; or a mild fever. These happen to about 1 child in 4. They appear soon after the shot is given and go away within a day or two.

Other Reactions

Individual childhood vaccines have been associated with other mild problems, or with moderate or serious problems:

  • DTaP vaccine
  • Mild problems: Fussiness (up to 1 child in 3); tiredness or poor appetite (up to 1 child in 10); vomiting (up to 1 child in 50); swelling of the entire arm or leg for 1-7 days (up to 1 child in 30) – usually after the 4th or 5th dose.
  • Moderate problems: Seizure (1 child in 14,000); non-stop crying for 3 hours or longer (up to 1 child in 1,000); fever over 105°F (1 child in 16,000).
  • Serious problems: Long term seizures, coma, lowered consciousness, and permanent brain damage have been reported. These problems happen so rarely that it is hard to tell whether they were actually caused by the vaccination or just happened afterward by chance.

Polio vaccine / Hepatitis B vaccine / Hib vaccine

  • These vaccines have not been associated with other mild problems, or with moderate or serious problems.

Pneumococcal vaccine

  • Mild problems: During studies of the vaccine, some children became fussy or drowsy or lost their appetite.

Rotavirus vaccine

  • Mild problems: Children who get rotavirus vaccine are slightly more likely than other children to be irritable or to have mild, temporary diarrhea or vomiting. This happens within the first week after getting a dose of the vaccine.
  • Serious problems: Studies in Australia and Mexico have shown a small increase in cases of intussusception within a week after the first dose of rotavirus vaccine. So far, this increase has not been seen in the United States, but it can’t be ruled out. If the same risk were to exist here, we would expect to see 1 to 3 infants out of 100,000 develop intussusception within a week after the first dose of vaccine.

Download a Who Should Not Get Vaccinated Handout

What if there is a serious reaction?

What should I look for?
Look for anything that concerns you, such as signs of a severe allergic reaction, very high fever, or behavior changes.
Signs of a severe allergic reaction can include hives, swelling of the face and throat, difficulty breathing, a fast heartbeat, dizziness, and weakness. These would start a few minutes to a few hours after the vaccination.

What should I do?
If you think it is a severe allergic reaction or other emergency that can’t wait, call 9-1-1 or get the person to the nearest hospital. Otherwise, call your doctor.

Afterward, the reaction should be reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). Your doctor might file this report, or you can do it yourself through the VAERS web siteExternal Web Site Icon, or by calling 1-800-822-7967.

Vaccination is one of the best ways parents can protect infants, children, and teens from 16 potentially harmful diseases. Vaccine-preventable diseases can be very serious, may require hospitalization, or even be deadly – especially in infants and young children.

Free Immunization and Developmental Milestones for your child – Birth to 6 years of age

Recommended Immunizations Children 7 – 18 years of agecdc_vaccine_tracker
Spanish Version

Interpreting Abbreviations on Records

To interpret commonly used acronyms and abbreviations that health care professionals use to record vaccinations, consult the Vaccine and Acronyms and Abbreviations list. This list also contains manufacturers’ trade names for vaccines and some common abbreviations for vaccine-preventable diseases.

And Remember: Never give a child under the age of 19 aspirin or aspirin products without first talking with a doctor.  You could trigger a deadly disease known as Reye’s Syndrome.

Resources:

What is a Vaccine: http://www.niaid.nih.gov/topics/vaccines/understanding/Pages/whatVaccine.aspx
Vaccine Resources at CDC: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/index.html
Reye’s Syndrome: http://www.reyessyndrome.org
CDC Vaccine Video, Get The Picture: http://www.cdc.gov/CDCTV/GetThePicture/index.html
CDC: Vaccinations

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Pandemics – A Case For Vaccinations

Pandemics – A Case For Vaccinations

Diseases like whooping cough (pertussis), measles, mumps, and German measles (rubella) may be unfamiliar to you. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, these illnesses struck hundreds of thousands of people in the United States each year, mostly children, and tens of thousands of people died. The names of these diseases were frightening household words. They are all but forgotten. That change happened largely because of vaccines.

But now we see parents who are hesitating, or fighting vaccination of their children. Mostly from a fear of Autism, which has not been proved.  Learn more about Autism.  This could lead to a resurgence of many of these potentially deadly diseases as seen in the widespread Whooping Cough outbreak in 2012.

Today, children in the United States should routinely get vaccines that protect them and others from more than a dozen diseases such as measles, polio, and tetanus. Most of these diseases are now at their lowest levels in history, thanks to years of immunization because Children must get at least some vaccines before they may attend school.

BUT – many parents lacking informed, accurate information, are forgoing, or trying to forgo vaccinations, which is, vaccines_learn_morein the case of Whooping Cough, bringing these deadly diseases back into the general population.

After talking with parents across the country, CDC put together this short video to help answer the tough questions that real moms had about childhood immunizations. Understanding the importance of vaccines is crucial for you to protect your children’s health.

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The world is a smaller place, with more than 7 Billion people inhabiting the planet. Travel to other countries is easy, and more and more parents take their children with them. Recently, an outbreak of Tuberculosis  is stunning the entire city of Sheboygan, Wisconsin, and in Indiana in 2012, a visit to the Super Bowl caused a large outbreak of Measles which could have affected hundreds of thousands across the country.

Although the diseases themselves are potentially deadly, what is often dropped out are the deadly aftermaths of exposure:

1 – Contracting a deadly disease known as Reye’s Syndrome, which can be triggered after a viral infection. Lean more about Reye’s Syndrome.

2 – The surge in Chickenpox Parties – an illegal and potentially deadly practice. Learn more about Chickenpox Parties.

3 – Putting others at risk:
* Pregnant women and their unborn child
* People with weakened immune systems because of illness or medications; for example,
— People with HIV/AIDS or cancer
— Patients who have had transplants, and
— People on chemotherapy, immunosuppressive medications, or long-term use of steroids

How do you know if that young woman behind you in the grocery store that your unvaccinated child is talking to and handing a toy is in early pregnancy?

How do you know if that grandfatherly man at the restaurant who ruffles your little one’s hair is on Chemotherapy?

How do you know if the child’s own Grandmother, or your own Sister, has an un-diagnosed Cancer?

An un-vaccinated child could carry any one of the diseases they should be vaccinated for, for more than 10 to 14 days before symptoms show up. How many people have they infected during that time?

NOTE!! Never give a child under the age of 19 aspirin or aspirin products without consulting a doctor first, as you could trigger a deadly disease known as Reye’s Syndrome!

Children, and Adults, do die of these diseases. That is why there are vaccines.  So do think about the responsibility you have toward your child, your family, and society as a whole when it comes to vaccinations.  They do save lives, prevent pandemics, and make us all safer.

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Triclosan And Your Child’s Well-being

A hand sanitizer, or antiseptic,  is often used as an alternative to hand washing when soap and water is not readily available. But not all hand sanitizers are created equal, and some may even cause health issues in children and adults.

Practicing good hand hygiene is especially important:wash_hands

After using the bathroom
Before eating or drinking anything
Before and after handling raw foods, fish, poultry, or eggs
After using a public phone
After riding public transportation
In schools and day care centers
After changing diapers
When one is sick
After shaking hands
After sneezing or coughing
After touching an ATM, elevator buttons or escalator handrails

Manufactures claim that sanitizers kill 99.9 percent of germs. But some studies suggest that keeping environments too clean and the persistent use of antibacterial soaps and hand sanitizers may inhibit proper immune system development in children. This is because inflammatory systems require the exposure to common germs to properly develop.

Although the FDA recommends, that when possible, it is better to use soap and water and scrub for at least 20 seconds, that is not always possible in the real world.

So what about hand sanitizers, and can they be dangerous?

There are new studies just out that are claiming that one ingredient used by some manufactures can indeed cause health issues. The ingredient is Triclosan.

Triclosan was first registered as a pesticide in 1969.

Triclosan is an antimicrobial active ingredient contained in a variety of products where it acts to slow or stop the growth of bacteria, fungi, and mildew. It is used in items such as conveyor belts, fire hoses, dye bath vats, or ice-making equipment as an antimicrobial pesticide.

brushteeth2Triclosan is also used in products such as, fabrics, vinyl, plastics (toys, toothbrushes), adhesives, polyethylene, polyurethane, polypropylene, floor wax emulsions, textiles (footwear, clothing), caulking compounds, sealants, rubber, carpeting, and a wide variety of other products.

Triclosan has been used since 1972, and it is present in soaps (0.10-1.00%), deodorants, toothpastes, mouth washes, and cleaning supplies, and is infused in an increasing number of consumer products such as kitchen utensils, toys, bedding, socks, and trash bags.bathing

So your morning routine may start with bathing or showering with soap, brushing your teeth with toothpaste and using mouth wash, perhaps applying some cosmetics, and a dash of deodorant. Then throughout the day, to protect yourself from germs, you use a pocket hand sanitizer, or spray.

Have you checked those items for Triclosan? If the product contains Triclosan, it must be labled.

ingredient_tricolsanSeveral scientific studies have come out since the last time the FDA reviewed Triclosan that warrant further review. According to one recent study, Triclosan may impact respiratory health, by promoting the development of allergies and causing inflammation in the mucous lining of the nose, also known as rhinitis.

Researchers from NIEHS, Norway, and the CDC found the link after measuring levels of Triclosan in urine samples from Norwegian children. The authors published their paper online Nov. 12 in the journal Allergy, and state their findings replicate those of another study that used American children participating in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Since these reports found an association between Triclosan and the occurrence of allergic sensitization in two different populations, the researchers feel confident the relationship is genuine.

The 623 Norwegian children used in the study have been followed since birth. At age 10, the youngsters received two days of extensive clinical evaluation at Oslo University Hospital, undergoing allergy skin prick tests and lung function assessments on a treadmill, and provided urine and blood samples. The research team sent the urine samples to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to measure the amounts of Triclosan.

The results showed that children with allergy sensitivity and rhinitis had the highest levels of Triclosan in their urine. Since Triclosan doesn’t stay in the body very long, 1-2 days according to the study, they think the elevated levels come from continued use of certain products.

Animal studies have shown that Triclosan alters hormone regulation. Other studies in bacteria have raised the possibility that triclosan contributes to making bacteria resistant to antibiotics.

The authors of the study plan to continue examining the Triclosan-allergy connection. They say other research groups have measured Triclosan in breast milk from Swedish mothers and, since Norwegian mothers tend to breastfeed their babies during the first 4-6 months of life, the study plans to follow up the Swedish findings with a study of Triclosan andbreastfeeding allergy development in Norwegian infants. The research team has already collected urine from the newborns and will follow up as they age.

The FDA has partnered with other Federal Agencies to study the effects of Triclosan on animal and environmental health.

So what to do?

Check the labels for Triclosan on the items you and your children use.

Many hand sanitizers, like the PURELL® brand, do not contain Triclosan. Using alcohol based instant hand sanitizers, when soap and water are not available, is one of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have recommended the use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers when soap and water are not available and hands are not visibly dirty. The CDC recommends that children in school may use alcohol-based hand rubs as an alternative to handwashing.

The main active ingredient in Purell hand sanitizers is ethyl alcohol, the primary germ-killing agent in most hand-sanitizing agents.

According to the Purell company, one of the major benefits of using ethyl alcohol over other germ killing agents is that bacteria have been unable to create a resistance to ethyl alcohol. That means that regardless of how often you use the handsanitizer_purellproduct, the bacteria continue to die.

Other Ingredients Include:

Isopropyl alcohol is also a germ-killing agent. Although the percentage of isopropyl alcohol is much less than ethyl alcohol, both work together to keep your hands free of the bacteria and viruses that cause infection and disease.

Carbomer is a common ingredient used to make gel-like solutions. The carbomer is added to water in Purell by sifting it in. As the carbomer combines with the water, it creates a non-foaming gel.

Tocopheryl acetate is a form of the fat-soluble vitamin E. It is commonly used in skin products as an antioxidant and moisturizer. Its moisturizing properties can help offset the drying effect that ethyl alcohol can cause to the skin.

Glycerin is another common ingredient in skin products. It works in two ways–as a skin moisturizer that absorbs moisture from the air, and to make Purell easier to spread on the skin.

Propylene glycol is a moisturizer that works similar to glycerin. This ingredient pulls moisture from the air and deposits it into the upper layers of the skin, helping to keep skin from drying out.

Isopropyl myrisate works to thicken the consistency of the Purell gel. It also acts as an emollient to prevent the product from feeling oily.

Purell states that aboratory testing has never shown alcohol-based hand sanitizers like PURELL® to lead to bacterial resistance. “There is no evidence that organisms adapt and become immune to the active ingredient in PURELL® products. Once your hands are rubbed dry after application of PURELL®, the alcohol has evaporated completely. PURELL® leaves no harmful residue. A small bit of emollient (skin conditioning agent) is left on the hands after use to leave your hands feeling soft and refreshed.”

Non-alcohol, or some labeled ‘natural’ sanitizers are not as good. Alcohol-based sanitizers work because alcohol breaks up bacterial proteins and kills them.

In the end, know your ingredients, read labels, and choose wisely.

For those interested in trying Purell, here is a link to a coupon: http://www.purell.com/about-us/purell-coupons-promotions.aspx

Citations:
http://www.epa.gov/oppsrrd1/REDs/factsheets/triclosan_fs.htm;

http://www.epa.gov/endo/

Bertelsen RJ, Longnecker MP, Lovik M, Calafat AM, Carlsen KH, London SJ, Lodrup Carlsen KC. 2012. Triclosan exposure and allergic sensitization in Norwegian children. Allergy; doi:10.1111/all.12058 [Online 12 November 2012]

http://www.niehs.nih.gov/news/newsletter/2012/12/science-allergies/

http://www.livestrong.com/article/68666-purell-hand-sanitizer-ingredients/#ixzz2Ms7zvFfg

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Beware Fraudulent Flu Products

In the past week, FDA has sent an additional nine warning letters to firms marketing fraudulent flu products, including flufraudredflagan online firm marketing an “alternative to the flu shot,” a firm selling an oral spray online and in major retail stores, and three firms marketing dietary supplements online. (The latter three firms’ letters are co-signed by the Federal Trade Commission, which regulates the advertising of many consumer products.)

The remaining four warning letters were issued to online firms selling what they claim to be generic and other unapproved versions of oseltamivir phosphate (the active ingredient in Tamiflu). Tamiflu is an FDA-approved brand-name drug; no generic is approved in the U.S.

As the flu continues to make people sick—and even cause deaths—scammers are alive and well, promoting their fraudulent products to the unsuspecting public.

These scammers sell their products with claims to prevent, treat or cure the flu, even though they have not been tested and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved them.

FDA warns consumers to steer clear of fraudulent flu products, which can be found online and in retail stores and may include products marketed as dietary supplements or conventional foods, drugs, nasal sprays and devices.

“As any health threat emerges, fraudulent products appear almost overnight,” says Gary Coody, R.Ph., FDA’s national health fraud coordinator. “Right now, so-called ‘alternatives’ to the flu vaccine are big with scammers.”

“These unproven products give consumers a false sense of security,” says Mary Malarkey, director of FDA’s Office of Compliance and Biologics Quality. “There is no need to buy a product that claims to be an alternative to the vaccine. Flu vaccine is still available and it’s not too late to get vaccinated.”

Flu Fraud Red Flags!

These flu claims on an unapproved product indicate that it may be fraudulent:

  • reduces severity and length of flu
  • boosts your immunity naturally without a flu shot
  • safe and effective alternative to flu vaccine
  • prevents catching the flu
  • effective treatment for flu
  • faster recovery from flu
  • supports your body’s natural immune defenses to fight off flu

The best way to prevent the flu is by getting vaccinated every year, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the vaccine for adults and children over six months of age. To find a list of clinics, supermarkets, pharmacies and other vaccine providers in your neighborhood, visit www.flu.gov, click on “Flu Vaccine Finder” and enter your zip code.

If you get the flu, two FDA-approved antiviral drugs—Tamiflu (oseltamivir) and Relenza (zanamivir)—are treatment options recommended by CDC. These prescription drugs can help fight the virus in your body and shorten the time you’re sick. They can also be used to help prevent the flu.

Types of Fraudulent Flu Products

There are no legally marketed over-the-counter (OTC) drugs to prevent or cure the flu. However, there are legal OTC products to reduce fever and to relieve muscle aches, congestion, and other symptoms typically associated with the flu.

NOTE: Never give aspirin or aspirin products to children under that age of 19 for flu or viral No Aspirin Products for Children!infections!

Unapproved drugs (which sometimes are marketed as dietary supplements), conventional foods (such as herbal teas) or devices (such as air filters and light therapies) are fraudulent if they make flu prevention, treatment or cure claims, says Coody, “because they haven’t been evaluated by FDA for these uses.”

On Jan. 25, 2013, FDA and the Federal Trade Commission jointly sent a warning letter to the company that markets “GermBullet,” a nasal inhaler that makes flu prevention and treatment claims. The firm is required to remove the language in its labeling and advertising that violates federal law.

“If the company continues to sell the product without removing the deceptive and illegal language, the firm may be subject to enforcement action, which could include seizure of the products or other legal sanctions,” says FDA Regulatory Counsel Brad Pace, J.D., of FDA’s Health Fraud and Consumer Outreach Branch.

Fraudulent Online Pharmacies

Online pharmacies present an opportunity for Internet scammers to take advantage of unsuspecting consumers. Legitimate online pharmacies do exist, but so do many websites that look like professional and legitimate pharmacies but are actually fraudulent and illegal.

These websites may be selling unapproved antiviral drugs. “Beware of websites that sell generic Tamiflu or Relenza,” says FDA pharmacist Connie Jung, R.Ph., Ph.D., of FDA’s Office of Drug Security, Integrity and Recalls. “Currently there are no FDA-approved generics available for these drugs on the U.S. market.”

“With unapproved products, you really don’t know what you’re getting and can’t be sure of the quality,” adds Jung. “The products could be counterfeit, contaminated, or have the wrong active ingredient or no active ingredient. You could experience a bad reaction, or not receive the drug you need to get better.”

Jung also warns consumers not to be tempted by an online seller that offers much lower prices than typically charged for prescription drugs by your local pharmacy. “Deep discounts on price are a good indicator of a fraudulent, illegal online pharmacy. You should avoid these online sellers because you might get products that are harmful to your health.”

FDA encourages consumers to buy prescription drugs only through an online pharmacy that requires a valid prescription from a doctor or other authorized health care provider and is licensed by the state board of pharmacy (or equivalent state agency) where the patient is located.

Health fraud is pervasive and it’s not always easy to spot a fraudulent product, says Coody. “If you’re tempted to buy an unproven or little known treatment, especially if it’s sold on the Internet, check with your health care provider first.”

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Product Brand Names for Aspirin

aspirintabletAlthough aspirin is an old drug, we often mistakenly take its safety for granted; it can be a dangerous drug, especially for children.

You might be surprised at the number of medications that contain aspirin (salicylates).  To assist you in recognizing some of the medications that contain aspirin, we have provided some lists below.  These are all basic guides, and you must always read the labels.   And, of course, these products are not to be used with children under the age of 19! 

As with most medications, whether they be prescription or over the counter, you want to be careful that you are not ‘double-dosing’  because the recommended dosages are already just below the toxic level to human beings.

Aspirin Brand Names:

  • Acuprin®
  • Anacin® Aspirin Regimen
  • Ascriptin®
  • Aspergum®
  • Aspidrox®medicine_cabinet
  • Aspir-Mox®
  • Aspirtab®
  • Aspir-trin®
  • Bayer® Aspirin
  • Bufferin®
  • Buffex®
  • Easprin®
  • Ecotrin®
  • Empirin®
  • Entaprin®
  • Entercote®
  • Fasprin®
  • Genacote®
  • Gennin-FC®
  • Genprin®
  • Halfprin®
  • Magnaprin®
  • Miniprin®
  • Minitabs®
  • Ridiprin®
  • Sloprin®
  • Uni-Buff®
  • Uni-Tren®
  • Valomag®
  • Zorprin®

Brand names of combination products

  • Alka-Seltzer® (containing Aspirin, Citric Acid, Sodium Bicarbonate)
  • Alka-Seltzer® Extra Strength (containing Aspirin, Citric Acid, Sodium Bicarbonate)
  • Alka-Seltzer® Morning Relief (containing Aspirin, Caffeine)
  • Alka-Seltzer® Plus Flu (containing Aspirin, Chlorpheniramine, Dextromethorphan)
  • Alka-Seltzer® PM (containing Aspirin, Diphenhydramine)
  • Alor® (containing Aspirin, Hydrocodone)
  • Anacin® (containing Aspirin, Caffeine)
  • Anacin® Advanced Headache Formula (containing Acetaminophen, Aspirin, Caffeine)
  • Aspircaf® (containing Aspirin, Caffeine)
  • Axotal® (containing Aspirin, Butalbital)
  • Azdone® (containing Aspirin, Hydrocodone)
  • Bayer® Aspirin Plus Calcium (containing Aspirin, Calcium Carbonate)
  • Bayer® Aspirin PM (containing Aspirin, Diphenhydramine)
  • Bayer® Back and Body Pain (containing Aspirin, Caffeine)
  • BC Headache (containing Aspirin, Caffeine, Salicylamide)
  • BC Powder (containing Aspirin, Caffeine, Salicylamide)
  • Damason-P® (containing Aspirin, Hydrocodone)
  • Emagrin® (containing Aspirin, Caffeine, Salicylamide)
  • Endodan® (containing Aspirin, Oxycodone)
  • Equagesic® (containing Aspirin, Meprobamate)
  • Excedrin® (containing Acetaminophen, Aspirin, Caffeine)
  • Excedrin® Back & Body (containing Acetaminophen, Aspirin)
  • Goody’s® Body Pain (containing Acetaminophen, Aspirin)
  • Levacet® (containing Acetaminophen, Aspirin, Caffeine, Salicylamide)
  • Lortab® ASA (containing Aspirin, Hydrocodone)
  • Micrainin® (containing Aspirin, Meprobamate)
  • Momentum® (containing Aspirin, Phenyltoloxamine)
  • Norgesic® (containing Aspirin, Caffeine, Orphenadrine)
  • Orphengesic® (containing Aspirin, Caffeine, Orphenadrine)
  • Panasal® (containing Aspirin, Hydrocodone)
  • Percodan® (containing Aspirin, Oxycodone)
  • Robaxisal® (containing Aspirin, Methocarbamol)
  • Roxiprin® (containing Aspirin, Oxycodone)
  • Saleto® (containing Acetaminophen, Aspirin, Caffeine, Salicylamide)
  • Soma® Compound (containing Aspirin, Carisoprodol)
  • Soma® Compound with Codeine (containing Aspirin, Carisoprodol, Codeine)
  • Supac® (containing Acetaminophen, Aspirin, Caffeine)
  • Synalgos-DC® (containing Aspirin, Caffeine, Dihydrocodeine)
  • Talwin® Compound (containing Aspirin, Pentazocine)
  • Vanquish® (containing Acetaminophen, Aspirin, Caffeine)
  • TIP: It is important to keep a written list of all of any prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements, because many of these contain salicylates, too. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.

Other Over The Counter Medications that Contain Aspirin:

  • Kaopectate
  • Maalox
  • PamprinNo Aspirin Products for Children!
  • Pepto-Bismol
  • Vanquish
  • Alka-Seltzer
  • Doan’s

For lists of aspirin containing products, both prescription and over the counter, go to the Reye’s Syndrome website by clicking here.

Symptoms of aspirin overdose may include:

  • burning pain in the throat or stomach
  • vomiting
  • decreased urination
  • fever
  • restlessness
  • irritability
  • talking a lot and saying things that do not make sense
  • fear or nervousness
  • dizziness
  • double vision
  • uncontrollable shaking of a part of the body
  • confusion
  • abnormally excited mood
  • hallucination (seeing things or hearing voices that are not there)
  • seizures
  • drowsiness
  • loss of consciousness for a period of time
Symptoms for Reye’s Syndrome include:
Stage I Symptoms Stage II Symptoms Stage III Symptoms Stage IV Symptoms
Persistent or continuous vomiting
Signs of brain dysfunction:
Listlessness
Loss of pep and energy
Drowsiness
Personality changes:
Irritability
Aggressive behavior
Disorientation:
Confusion
Irrational behavior
Combative
Delirium
Convulsions
Coma

NOTE: The symptoms of Reye’s Syndrome in infants do not follow a typical pattern. For example, vomiting may be replaced with diarrhea and infants may display irregular breathing.

Suspect Reye’s in an Infant with:

  • * Diarrhea, but not necessarily vomiting
    * Respiratory disturbances such as hyperventilation or apneic episodes, seizures and hypoglycemia are common
    * Elevated SGOT-SGPT (SAT-ACT) [usually 200 or more units] in the absence of jaundice
Reye’s Syndrome should be suspected in a person if this pattern of symptoms appear during, or most commonly, after a viral illness. Not all of the symptoms have to occur, nor do they have to be displayed in this order. Fever is not usually present. Many diseases have symptoms in common. Physicians and medical staff in emergency rooms who have not had experience in treating Reye’s Syndrome may misdiagnose the disease.
The NRSF has compiled an enormous amount of aspirin information, including non-aspirin products, and aspirin products, in lists in an Android app available in the google play store:  Aspirin Sense and Sensitivity.

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