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Yesterday I spent most of my day on the phone or on the computer.

Little T's PT quit last week and I'm scrambling to try to find a replacement. I also realised sadly he'll need PT for some time. So on Thursday I have to convince the doctor of this government org CCS to give him PT for the next 20 years.

I talked to Little T's GI doctor and we've put him on Prilosec to see if that helps with the bad reflux.

I'm considering sending Little T to preschool in September if his immune system can handle it and I can find something suitable. Socially I think he's ready. I'm not sure if he'll be able to walk, or talk much, but he'll be able to communicate with the teachers. He'll be motivated to walk and to talk to keep up with the other kids. I'm looking for a preschool that has mixed special needs and typical kids. There's one in Palo Alto. I'm hoping there's one closer to home, but we'll see.

So I called Little T's pediatrician's office to find out about shots. Someone there needs sensitivity training. I gave Little's T chart number and said "[Little T] can probably start receiving his shots in September if all goes well. How long it would take him to catch on his shots?" The receptionist said "He's never received any shots?" with a disdain and shock in her voice "No." I replied. I really didn't see why it was any of her business. Abruptly the phone was disconnected. I called back and someone else answered the phone. "Hello, this is Liz" I said "I got mysteriously disconnected." Liz said "Oh, that message got taken." with a certain arch quality in her voice. I said "It's important to add that September's the earliest, because he last received chemo in March." "Okay." she said with a pause. I think she was looking over at the other receptionist. It made me feel better. I like Liz. She's always friendly and cheerful when we go in to see her. I should tell her sometime. Later my ped's nurse called back and said it would take a year to catch up and that Little T could get a medical exemption if we wanted him to go to preschool.

I think it's really ironic, because I'm very pro vaccination. My little sister almost died from meningitis. When I was a teenager, I did home care for a man crippled by polio. I have no doubt that some children are poisoned by mercury. And some children are a lot more sensitive to mercury than others. Mercury may even be a casual agent in autism and other neurological disorders. I also want mercury removed as a preservative in vaccines. The trouble is that the vaccine needs to preserved somehow and I worry the new preservative may be worse. It's possible there may be something specific about thiemersol that causes damage, but the amount of mercury in vaccines is incredibly small compared to the amount of mercury exposure in everything else. If you want to avoid mercury, don't eat fish, eat organic everything, because there's a ton of mercury in pesticides and fertilizers. Get mercury removed from our water. Life is always about weighing risks and benefits. IMO there's a huge benefit to getting a vaccine - being protected against life threatening and crippling disesases v.s the small risk that it increases the overall mercury load on a child's body. The sad fact is that mercury is a pollutant that pervades our environment. You can check out this handy dandy diagram from the EPA. This seems to be lost in the debate about vaccinations.

I can certainly understand spacing vaccinations and delaying certain vaccinations. Like I see nothing wrong with delaying the Hepatitis B vaccine if the child is not in a population at risk for the disease. They give it to newborns, because the most at risk population is there at birth. But I would gladly give Little T the HIB (meningitis) vaccine today if I could. I worry that he will catch menigitis. And sadly I avoid certain gatherings where I feel the other kids aren't vaccinated lest he catch certain life threatening diseases.

Comments

( 5 notes — Leave a note )
owlmoose
May. 25th, 2006 05:05 pm (UTC)
I hope the preschool thing works out -- sounds like that would be really great for all of you!

That is an excellent point re. mercury in the environment, and the tiny amount in vaccines being small potatoes in comparison.
goldenlily
May. 25th, 2006 06:24 pm (UTC)
The risk from vaccines is so small compared to the risks associated with the disease. Have you tried going to the cdc website and seeing if you can get an altered vaccination schedule. I know they do them for children from birth, but I don't know about from a different timepoint. I'd also agree in starting with the more 'at risk' ones first. HIB, Diptheria, Tetanus etc.

And you are right about avoiding certain situations where kids aren't vaccinated. Much higher risk for the disease. Herd immunity is really crucial in population groups.

Also, I believe (I could be wrong) that Thimerosal risks are pretty much a reaction at the site of injection and that they are replacing it, and other mercury like compounds, with safer chemicals. :)
dawnd
May. 25th, 2006 06:32 pm (UTC)
Yeah, the vaccine thing is tough. We chose to space out her vaccinations as much as possible, breaking up some of them that would normally be given together. With the increasing reports of the autism links, etc., I'm really really glad we did that at this point! I hope you can find a schedule that works for you guys.
(Anonymous)
May. 26th, 2006 02:54 am (UTC)
Vaccinations
Amen on your vaccination narrative. I wish I could say it as well. I konw at least one child irreparably and severly injured by vaccinations, but is possible that the severity of his injuries might be from the poorly performed CPR. CDC ruled in his family's favor which will provide lifetime care. But, still, I'm very pro-vaccination.

I hope it works out for Little T to go to a great pre-school Sounds like he'd make tons of friends with that sunbeam smile.

Ilene
choiceful
May. 26th, 2006 11:33 pm (UTC)
Wow, good luck with the vaccines! I typically hang out with the more anti-vaccine crowd. We decided to go with vaccines for Tovar, but we're holding off on Hep B like you suggest, and spreading them out: not doing more than one shot/week, which means that it seems like we go in for a shot almost every week ;)

Our friend tigresa isn't vaccinating... not sure if she's planning on ever doing it, but at least not for awhile, and she just took her little one to Mexico! Thankfully they're back and fine ;)
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