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The American Academy of Pediatrics, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) announced changes to the childhood vaccine schedule this week, Yahoo! News reports. If you vaccinate your children, keep doing what you're doing but with a few small tweaks. Among the new recommendations, published in the journal Pediatrics:
U.S. health officials are recalling 800,000 pre-filled syringes of the H1N1 flu virus vaccine for infants, The New York Times reports. The targeted batch was made for children 6 months to 35 months in the nationwide effort to protect high-risk people against the "swine flu" outbreak.
My recent blog about H1N1 stirred up some passionate debates. The last time I had so many comments was when I wrote about a woman trying to find a doctor/hospital willing to do VBACs. I sarcastically said, “Yeah, good luck with that,” and got some angry responses from readers who didn’t get my sarcasm.
Celebrities don’t just help motherhood en vogue; they also focus attention on causes important to families, such as efforts to end poverty, hunger and childhood disease. And while many of us are familiar with actress Angelina Jolie’s good deeds on behalf of the United Nations, and former model Christy Turlington Burns’ work for CARE, we thought you should know about some other stars’ charitable efforts.
Public health experts continue to warn that the 2009 H1N1 virus (aka swine flu) has the potential to cause widespread, serious illness—even death. And because pregnant women are among those at highest risk, officials are recommending that they be at the front of the line to receive the vaccine. Clinical trials on pregnant women have been conducted, and a vaccine became available in October.
You can’t turn on your computer, television or radio these days without hearing about the H1N1 flu virus. It’s the number one news headline and perfect fodder for keeping 24-hour news coverage burning; and for good reason. The flu is scary stuff. With words like pandemic and state of emergency being used, this year, it feels even scarier. But is H1N1 worse than any other flu? At best it makes one feel like a dog’s dinner for a week. At worst, flu complications can require hospitalization and at the extreme end of that spectrum, cause death.
The H1N1 vaccine will be available in the U.S. in the next few weeks, and pregnant women will be given high priority. But the question remains: Will they get the vaccine? After all, only 1 in 7 pregnant women gets a regular flu shot each winter.
I’ll tell you what I tell my patients: There is no proof that vaccines cause autism. But there is some agreement that they may trigger autism and other problems in a small group of susceptible children. That’s why I prefer to customize a vaccination schedule for each child. This type of amended schedule is spelled out very well in 2008’s The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for Your Child, by Robert Sears, M.D., but it is still loudly criticized by the American Academy of Pediatrics and some other experts.
Look who's adding her name to the children's advocate list: J.Lo
I took David to the doctor's today for his two month appointment (a little late, I know, but I blame the holidays). He weighs just shy of 14 pounds. He cooed like crazy and flashed his big gummy smile while the doctor checked him over. Then he got his vaccinations and wailed so hard it felt like someone was stabbing me with something sharp as well. Elise clung to my leg and cried too when she heard David's distress.
I got another sad email this week from a grandmother. Kristen's daughter is pregnant with her second baby. The first, I'm very sad to report, died at birth. Kristen says the baby was born very underweight (only 4 pounds) but not premature. There was a lot of meconium and the placenta was very small. Kristen's daughter has hypothyroidism but took excellent care of her health throughout her pregnancy. Still, tragedy hit hard. Now that she's expecting her second baby, it's impossible not to feel anxious about losing another baby.
It's never too early to plan on being a good parent. It's the stuff of many little girls' games, dreams and lifetime goals. Many little boys too, I imagine, but in my house, it's always the girls who play the mommy/baby game. Here's how it goes:
Girl 1: "I'll be the mommy and you be the baby."
Girl 2: "No, I want to be the mommy, this time. You always get to be the mommy."
Girl 1: "Well, you can't be the mommy because, I am. You can be the daddy if you want to. That's pretty good."