Information on Vaccines from the blog of GetzWell Pediatrics, a premier pediatrics practice in San Francisco, California.

Vaccines

Information on Vaccines from the blog of GetzWell Pediatrics, a premier pediatrics practice in San Francisco, California.

Vaccines: 5 Ways to Optimize Your Child’s Immune Response and Reduce Vaccine Side Effects

At GetzWell, when it comes to childhood vaccination, we use up-to-date research and thoughtful consultation to help our families plan the best course of action.

We also go to great lengths to help parents understand the helpful role they play in their baby’s immunization response and experience. The following are 5 important ways we can ensure that your baby is vaccinated in the healthiest and safest way possible.

Breastfeeding Reduces Risk of Fever After Vaccines

Parents often ask if they should premedicate their baby before immunization in order to prevent fever and discomfort that’s associated with the shots. In fact, a study published last year in The Lancet suggested that acetaminophen (the active ingredient in Tylenol) blunts the immune system’s response to the vaccines. At GetzWell, where we often vaccinate children on a staggered schedule (fewer vaccines per appointment) and strongly discourage premedication, we rarely see post-vaccine fevers or pain. Additionally, an Italian study involving 450 babies (published in Pediatrics in May 2010), showed that half as many infants who were exclusively breastfed developed post-vaccine fevers compared to babies who weren’t breastfed at all. Yet another reason to support breastfeeding whenever possible!

Whooping Cough: Who’s At Risk?

California has officially declared the pertussis or whooping cough outbreak an epidemic.  In fact, the golden state is on track to break a 50 year record number of cases, and 5 infants have died this year in California alone.  At GetzWell, three of our own patients (all unvaccinated) have had it in the last few months!  Fortunately these were not babies and the kids are healthy again, but it was a miserable period of many weeks of uncontrollable coughing.  The most common scenario is a mild cold that lasts a few weeks before the coughing begins.  If your child has a protracted cold (lasting more than 10 days without improvement) or a cough following a  runny nose that’s lasted a couple weeks, call us for an appointment.

Dr. Getzelman’s mindful approach to vaccination

This is a 2 part video that highlights GetzWell’s thoughtful, 21st Century approach to childhood vaccination.  Dr. Getzelman was a panel member at the Bay Area Home Birth Collective’s annual vaccine talk at San Francisco’s Waldorf School this year and speaks about GetzWell’s unique approach to vaccination.

GetzWell Pediatrics is Vaccine Friendly

What does it mean to be a vaccine friendly pediatric practice? While we believe vaccines play a vital role in keeping our patients and communities healthy, we support parents in their right to adopt a vaccination schedule different from the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the Center for Disease Control (CDC). We recommend that all parents considering an alternative vaccination schedule read The Vaccine Book in addition to understanding the CDC (www.CDC.gov) and AAP (www.AAP.org) recommendations. We encourage an open discussion about vaccines and want to understand and address the concerns of our families. We strive to use and provide sound information as a basis for decision making regarding vaccines and children’s health in general.