Seniors should get whooping cough vaccine

Children's Health, Parenting
An across the street neighbor was complaining the other day that her daughter and son-in-law in southern California were not going to let them visit their new grandbaby until they both had their influenza and pertussis vaccines. My comment, "Good for them!" Our neighbor seemed surprised. I said, "The kids are building a cocoon of protection for their baby. Since a baby cannot get the influenza vaccine until after six months of age, and since a child younger than six months of age is at risk for pertussis, or whooping cough, and several babies have died of it this year, they are making a wise decision for their family." The neighbor seemed perturbed by my response ... but, my bet is she and her husband will be immunized. And, they…
Read More

Warning About Pacifiers Containing Honey

Children's Health, Nutritional Health, Parenting
One of the joys of my professional life is serving as a member of the visiting faculty of a Christian family medicine residency, In His Image, in Tulsa, OK. One of the residents recently sent out this note which is a good reminder to parents with children under one year of age. Hello everyone, I'm presently doing my rotation in outpatient Peds clinic. I just want to share something that caught our attention when a Hispanic mom brought her child in for a 2 month well child check. It was a usual normal well baby check until mom said that she gives her child a pacifier with honey on it. As we all know, giving honey to babies less than a year old is a health hazard as it can…
Read More

Pros and cons of the meningitis booster shot recommendation for 16-year-olds

Children's Health, Parenting
For a number of years, I've been recommending the meningitis vaccine for kids at 10 to 11 years of age. I've always told parents, right now it looks like it will just take a single vaccination, but, in the future, we may see a recommendation for a booster. Now, that prediction has come true. The Los Angeles Times "Booster Shots" blog reported, "A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advisory committee on Wednesday recommended that adolescents receive a booster shot of the meningitis vaccine at age 16." Three years ago, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices "recommended that the vaccine be given routinely to children at the age of 10 or 11, primarily in an effort to protect them as they enter college and the military." The scientific community had…
Read More