Swine Flu Jab for pregnant women

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BlackC55

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As some of you may know Emma is expecting and we can't seem to make a decision wheather to have the jab or not.

I keep hearing conflicting information.

What to do?:wallbash:
 
What's the Government advice? I presume it's to have the jab.

For what it's worth I heard a pregnant nurse being interview on the radio who said she would have the jab, but maybe her personal circumstances are slightly different ie. not exposed to as many ill people.
 
We've just reviewed it all and while the first reaction was 'no, they can't have tested it properly yet' it seems that the vaccine is actually similar both in content and how it is designed to the ones produced every year for the common strains of flu. Therefore there's much better statistical knowledge of these vaccines and that's why the Government recommends taking it.

I think the sensible approach is to wait until the embryo is at least a couple of months old but other than that, the risks don't appear to be any different to normal flu vaccination.

I'm not a medically knowledgeable person by the way, but that's the conclusion we came to this week while trying to work it out for ourselves (and speaking to our GP).

Ian.
 
She is 5 months gone. Fully developed now too. Just has to grow.
 
Are pregnant women usually offered the seasonal flu jab?
 
Very difficult decision to make. Pregnant women are uniquely vulnerable ( particularly in second and third trimesters) due the suppression of their natural immune system to avoid damaging the foetus. Health Emergency - Information on Vulnerable Groups
It would appear however that antivirals are not contra-indicated in the event of infection -which is good.
Health Emergency - Antiviral recommendations
There are however very few facilities ( effectively none in the event of a large outbreak) in the UK for the specialist blood re-oxygenation treatment necessary in acute cases --- witness the Scottish Woman sent to Scandinavia for treatment. This might have implications for foetal oxygen deprivation.

also some re-assurance on vaccine safety:- http://www.healthemergency.gov.au/internet/healthemergency/publishing.nsf/Content/national-vaccination-program/$file/thiomersal.pdf

You will see from these links I am citing Australian references. The country has a sophisticated medical system and a reasonably open system of government reporting. They have already experienced a Swine Flu epidemic and a vaccination program so I would predict the best clinical experience/outcomes as opposed to prediction is to found there. I hope this helps a little Ollie with you and your partners' difficult decision.
 
Very difficult decision to make. Pregnant women are uniquely vulnerable ( particularly in second and third trimesters) due the suppression of their natural immune system to avoid damaging the foetus. Health Emergency - Information on Vulnerable Groups
It would appear however that antivirals are not contra-indicated in the event of infection -which is good.
Health Emergency - Antiviral recommendations
There are however very few facilities ( effectively none in the event of a large outbreak) in the UK for the specialist blood re-oxygenation treatment necessary in acute cases --- witness the Scottish Woman sent to Scandinavia for treatment. This might have implications for foetal oxygen deprivation.

also some re-assurance on vaccine safety:- http://www.healthemergency.gov.au/internet/healthemergency/publishing.nsf/Content/national-vaccination-program/$file/thiomersal.pdf

You will see from these links I am citing Australian references. The country has a sophisticated medical system and a reasonably open system of government reporting. They have already experienced a Swine Flu epidemic and a vaccination program so I would predict the best clinical experience/outcomes as opposed to prediction is to found there. I hope this helps a little Ollie with you and your partners' difficult decision.


Excellent, thankyou
 
In the same position, better half is just over 6 months now. Advice up here (grey Glasgow) from the midwifes has been to do nothing if mum to be is young fit and healthly. The vaccine is the similar to those used for normal winter flu. Cant decide if the sit tight and do nothing appraoch is right as expectant mums have a deminished imune system and therefore could be more suseptible to infection etc. On the other hand for a young fit person with no underlaying heath issues why should this strain of flu be anyworse than then normal winter strain, midwife and GP says it shouldn't so why worry!
 
Are pregnant women usually offered the seasonal flu jab?
No.

This is a controversial one- they are not considered one of the 'at risk' groups for normal flu. However, the Royal College of Midwives recommends/encourages the flu jab as there can be complications from it during pregnancy
 
Did the lady who had to go to Scandinavia make it back safely? I was discussing this with a friend just last week.

Alan
 
yes, shes back in Ayrshire now. She was 6 months preg. at the time and had a severe, all be it win the lotto type odds of it happening, reaction to the virus and was only sent to stockholm as there no suitble facilities to treat her in the UK
 
personally i wouldnt touch it. but more importantly my mussus's two cousins are both doctors (so are their respective wifes..) and neither would take the vaccine, have their kids vaccinated nor recommend it to anyone else..

the mere fact that the information and 'advise' provided are so conflicting is enough for me to dismiss it as;

'media hyped up nothing that finally got some politicians making statements made drug companies see the possibilities of hyping it up even more and selling it at ridiculous prices to government all over the world' - thats my opinion on h1n1
 
Ollie

I cannot give medical advice as I am not a clinician.

However I do manage a large doctors surgery and I am aware of the 'issues'.

All of the medically related Royal Colleges (RCGP,RCN, RCM blah blah) released a joint statement effectively saying they fully supported the CMOs advice that the identified risk groups (which includes pregnant women) should have the H1N1 vaccine.

On the subject of vaccine safety the Joint Committe on Vaccine safety are unanimous that the H1N1 is safe as it is essentially the same 'ingredients' as the seasonal flu vaccine and has been subjected to similar testing. The only difference (from the seasonal flu jab) is that the GSK manufactured vaccine comes (or is mixed before being administered) with an adjuvant - which aids immune response). However adjuvants are commonly used with other vaccines and their use has never given cause for concern.

Pregnant woment have by the nature of being pregnant have a supressed immune system and are inherently vulnerable through a number of factors. If a pregnant woman caught swine flu she could become very ill - hence the advice by the CMO (now endorsed by the Royal Colleges)that they should be protected by the vaccine.

As ever you should remember that there is no 'risk free solution', however the CMO and the Joint Commitee on Vaccine Safety and the Royal Colleges agree that the balance of risk is very heavily weighed in favour of proceeding with the vaccination programme.

In conclusion, it is a decision for you both to take at the end of the day. My only cautionary note is to beware of the scaremongers and conspiracy theorists - they will not be held responsible for their views and advice!

Best Regards
 
and was only sent to stockholm as there no suitble facilities to treat her in the UK


There are suitable facilities in the UK that do the same work as Stockholm but they had no spaces for her. How they would cope if everyone catches it is anyone's guess.

Russ
 
I neither can give advice as I am not medically qualified but would recommend you take a look at this article LINKY

From my US friends that went through this in 1976 the fact is true that a hastily rushed out vaccine killed more than the swine flu virus itself, it can also trigger dormant conditions as described in the article.

My wife is in one of the frontline groups who is being offered the new vaccine but has an underlying medical problem, as such she will not be having the vaccine. I too have been offered the vaccine due to my extensive work travel to foriegn parts, on medical advice I am not having the vaccine as my immune system is considered strong enough to deal with the virus.

At the end of the day it's a personal decision but a tough one. I would recommend that you talk this over with a health professional and then make your own judgement based on that advice.
 
Sorry, but I would trust very little in the daily mail, especially when it is relating to medical topics. They are invariably sensationalist & rarely(?ever) are in support of the medical professions.
The rare(but admittedly serious) risk of GBS is still far outweighed by the common(but serious) risk of H1N1
Vaccine development has come a long way in 30years & vaccines now are much more highly purified with less antigenic material in them compared to the past, hence less likely to trigger serious reactions.
 
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Go with whatever the guy who went to medical school for 7 years says.
 

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