Vaccine Information

Preventing disease is the greatest accomplishment of modern medical care. Pediatricians have always been the most active practitioners in this area.

 

VACCINATING YOUR CHILD PROMPTLY IS THE SINGLE BEST THING THAT A PARENT CAN DO TO INSURE THEIR CHILD'S GOOD HEALTH!

 

If you have questions about the risks and benefits of vaccines, contact us.

 

View the Immunization Chart below and click on the corresponding vaccinations to learn more.

Birth
HEP B
One Month
HEP B
Two Months
PENTACEL (DtaP, IPV/Hib), RotaTeq, Prevnar
Four Months
PENTACEL (DtaP, IPV/Hib), RotaTeq, Prevnar
Six Months
PENTACEL (DtaP, IPV/Hib), RotaTeq, Prevnar
Nine Months
HEP B
One Year
Prevnar, MMR
Fifteen Months
HIB, Varivax
Eighteen Months
DtaP, HEP A
Two Years
Two 1/2 Years / 30 Months
HEP A
Four Years
IPV, DtaP
Five Years
MMR, Varivax
Ten Years
Adacel
Eleven Years
Gardasil, Menactra
Twelve Years
Gardasil
Fifteen Years
Adacel
Sixteen Years
Menactra, Meningococcal B
Twelve - Eighteen Years
Adacel - Tetanus every 5 years.

Vaccine Details

 

DTaP is a combination against Diphtheria, Tetanus (Lockjaw) and Pertussis (Whooping Cough). Diphtheria causes significant inflammation in the respiratory tract and can cause heart inflammation and injury to the nervous system. This can be fatal.

 

Tetanus is a neurologic disease which causes severe muscle spasms and the inability to open the mouth due to an extreme spasm of the jaw muscles. Onset is gradual over a week and the disease subsides in a period of weeks for those who survive. Newborns can contract this disease through contamination of the umbilicus or because their mother is not vaccinated. This is rare in the United States due to the success of the vaccination program.

Pertussis is a disease that can become severe with a characteristic whooping type of cough which leaves the child exhausted. The cough can last for as long as ten weeks. Complications in infants and young children can include seizure, pneumonia, encephalopathy and death. Older children, adolescents and adults will generally only suffer from severe and protracted cough and the pain and sleep disruption that can result from it, but they may still infect susceptible infants.

Gardasil is a vaccine that protects against strains of HPV, Human Papillomavirus. HPV is an oncogenic virus, a virus that can cause cancer later in life. Forty strains of HPV are spread by sexual contact. HPV is now the most common sexually transmitted infection, with 20 million people infected in the United States and six million new infections occurring per year. Four of these strains cause the majority of genital warts and cancers of the throat, cervix, vagina, vulva, penis and anus. Vaccination can protect against infections from those strains, and is recommended for boys and girls as young as age nine. Vaccination can prevent 8,000 cases of cervical cancer and 4,000 cases of anal cancer per year alone.

Hepatitis B is a disease spread by blood, body fluids, vaginal secretion, semen and is found even in saliva and tears. Even long term exposure to someone with Hepatitis B can lead to infection. Pediatricians give this protection in infancy as a public health policy to provide protection against this disease as early in life as possible. People who get Hepatitis B run the risk of cancer and chronic liver disease. The risk of death for disease acquired in early childhood is 25% with 90% of infants acquiring the disease before 1yr of age become chronically infected.

HIB stands for Hemophilus Influenza type B (not a flu bug, just a confusing name). It is a serious invasive disease which can cause otitis media, sinusitis, pneumonia and meningitis. It was the leading cause of meningitis related brain damage and cognitive disability before the vaccine was used.

 

IPV is Polio vaccine made from dead polio virus which is injected. There is NO risk of acquiring Polio from this vaccine. Its use has replaced the oral vaccine which was live and carried a rare possibility of causing disease. Unfortunately, polio remains a cause of paralysis in many parts of the world.

 

Prevnar is a vaccine against many types of pneumoccal bacteria which cause infections of the upper respiratory tract and lungs. Pneumoccus is the most frequent cause of middle ear infections. It is also responsible for sinusitis, pneumonia and meningitis in infants and young children. Pneumoccus is very often resistant to antibiotic therapy, so prevention with immunization remains the best defense.

 

MMR Measles, Mumps and Rubella.

Measles is an acute illness with temperature over 101 degrees, cough, runny nose, pink eye and a red blotchy rash. Complications include ear infections, pneumonia, upper airway inflammation, and diarrhea, especially in young children. Acute brain inflammation which frequently causes permanent brain damage, occurs in one of every thousand cases. Death due to respiratory and neurologic complications occurs in one to three of every one thousand cases reported in the United States.

Mumps: this disease causes swelling of the parotid salivary glands located at the angle of the jaw in front of the ears. Complications are rare. However, after puberty this disease can cause swelling of the testicles.

Rubella: the danger of this otherwise mild disease is to the fetus of pregnant women who contract the disease in the first three months of their pregnancy. The eyes, heart and brain are common organs affected by this infection. These children often have stunted growth and can have blood disorders as well. If contracted in childhood, Rubella is a mild illness with rash and swollen glands.

Varivax protects against chickenpox.  Although infrequent, the liver, brain and kidney can be damaged in this disease. 

Hepatitis A is a liver disease that results from infection with the Hepatitis A virus. It can range in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months. Hepatitis A is usually spread when a person ingests fecal matter — even in microscopic amounts — from contact with objects, food, or drinks contaminated by the feces or stool of an infected person.

RotaTeq: prevents development of rotavirus infection. Rotavirus is the most common cause of diarrhea and dehydration in infants and children; it remains a common cause of hospital admissions in young children.

Adacel vaccine is a tetanus and pertussis booster, given after completion of the primary series.

Menactra & Meningococcal B: Meningococcal disease is a serious illness caused by a type of bacteria called Neisseria meningitidis. lt can lead to meningitis (infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord) and infections of the blood. Meningococcal disease often occurs without warning-even among people who are otherwise healthy.  Meningococcal disease can spread from person to person through close contact (coughing or kissing) or lengthy contact, especially among people living in the same household. There are at least 12 types of N. meningitidis, called 'serogroups." Serogroups A, B, C, W, and Y cause most meningococcal disease. Anyone can get meningococcal disease but certain people are at increased risk, including: 

•    Infants younger than one year old
•    Adolescents and young adults 16 through 23 years old
•    People with certain medical conditions that affect the immune system
•    People at risk because of an outbreak in their community

 

Influenza: Influenza vaccine protects against “the flu”.  Vaccines protect against the 3 or 4 strains that are expected to cause the most illness in any particular year.  Flu vaccines are given yearly.”

 

Covid-19: Covid-19 is a more recent infection which caused a pandemic beginning in 2019.  Covid-19 caused more than 5 million deaths globally by November 2021.  Available vaccines stimulate very high levels of protective antibody in vaccinated individuals and reduce serious disease and death.

New vaccines are always in the pipe-line and we have had to make many changes in our vaccination schedules in recent years. We keep a close eye on these developments and offer our patients every recommended new vaccine that is released.

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