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Chickenpox Put on the Spot

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A new study targets parents who chicken out on giving their kids the chickenpox vaccine


Most parents don't give much thought to chickenpox -- a disease from their childhood that they remember as uncomfortable and itchy. The laissez-faire attitude toward these pox may be the reason many parents forgo the vaccine for their kids -- remember chicken pox parties? What these parents don't realize is that almost 100 people die annually from the disease and thousands more require hospitalization.

Now a new study conducted by Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine says that children who are not vaccinated for chickenpox are nine times as likely to come down with a bad case of spots.

American Academy of Pediatrics spokeswoman and momlogic expert Dr. Alanna Levine says varicella (or chickenpox) vaccine should routinely be given to children between 12 and 15 months and then again between 4 and 6 years old. "When parents refuse the vaccine," says Levine, "it's often because they remember having a mild case."

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7 comments so far | Post a comment now
Mother Nature January 5, 2010, 5:23 PM

Just another attempt to scare parents into vaccinating their kids. None of mine were vaccinated against chicken pox, all 3 had a very mild case. Now, why don’t we talk about the numbers of children who DID receive the vaccine who when exposed to chicken pox develop a severe case of shingles? Vaccines are NOT 100% effective and DO NOT protect 100% against what ever they claim to protect against. It’s nothing more than false security.

hazel January 5, 2010, 9:01 PM

This article doesn’t mention that almost all of the people who die or have serious complications from chicken pox adults or children who are seriously immunocompromised. My three children were all happy healthy normal kids, I decided not to get them the chicken pox vaccine. They all caught it last year and had completely mild, easy cases.

The huge increase in shingles cases is due to the vaccine and people no longer being exposed to the virus. The money and lives possibly saved by the chicken pox vaccine is dwarfed by those shingles cases.

Anonymous January 5, 2010, 10:20 PM

paranoid parents

kendra January 5, 2010, 10:55 PM

As a child I had a horrific case of chicken pox, I was hospitalized and suffered greatly, I have the scars to prove it! Much later in my college years I was diagnosed with herpes zoster, a rare eye disease that affects those who have had the chicken pox. If I had never had the chicken pox I wouldn’t be dealing with the eye affliction now, at least that is what I’ve been told by the specialist I see. So there are pros and cons to both sides! To vaccinate or not is a personal decision but remember having the virus can lead to complications down the road! Personally I have 2 children and they receive all of their vaccinations right on schedule, as an immune compromised person I always think of not only my children but others also, you never know when you may come into contact with someone who has diabetes like myself, cancer, or some other immune disorder! Being exposed to something as simple as chicken pox could mean death to some people so why risk it? For some reason I have no immunity to MMR even though I’ve taken the MMR vacine 5 times, I live in fear that someone who has the measles will come into contact with me thinking its not a big deal and I will contract the virus which could kill me! My sister died from a simple case of the measles so I believe in vaccinating, but as I said before its a personal decision!

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Cheryl January 6, 2010, 10:55 AM

The propaganda on both sides of the vaccination argument makes it so difficult for parents to decide whether or not to vaccinate. I wish it were easier to determine fact from fear mongering on this issue.

mercaties January 8, 2010, 12:51 AM

In my kids school district it is a required immunization. If you choose not to vaccinate you can home school or send your kid to a private school. I just don’t understand all these stubborn parent’s that think they know everything and are willing to put their kids health at risk. These diseases are still around but we can prevent them now.

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