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Whooping cough jab while pg - did you? Didn't you? What were your reasons?

(38 Posts)
Gingerbreadpixie Thu 23-May-13 22:21:51

I'm 26 weeks pg and need to decide whether or not to have this jab in a few weeks time. I understand that the vaccine was previously not recommended for under 3's or pregnant women, which makes me quite wary of having it. But of course I also wouldn't want my newborn to catch WC. Myself and both siblings had WC as small children so I'm wondering if i have a natural immunity anyway? I'm a bit confused and undecided. I also have two autoimmune illnesses - T1 diabetes and hypothyroid. I don't know if that is relevant but I thought I'd add it just in case.

I am going to talk to my GP but cant get an appointment for a few weeks so I guess I'd just like to get some opinions from women who have had to make the same decision and what swayed you towards that decision?

(Ps - I'm not anti-vaccine and intend to give baby all his jabs when he's actually here.)

iamci Thu 23-May-13 23:19:13

after reading up I decided benefits outweighed potential risks so had it done. was in and out in less than five mins and had no side effects.

MrsBri Fri 24-May-13 04:04:38

I had WC as a child but still had the vaccine.

You only get the child's dose, just so your baby has enough protection until they get immunised.

As iamci says the benefits outweigh the risks, so I didn't hesitate in having it done.

MisselthwaiteManor Fri 24-May-13 04:22:50

I had it done, there's no real info available on the long term risks but newborns have died of whooping cough so it seemed a no brainier for me to have it done.

cupcake78 Fri 24-May-13 06:26:36

I had it. I'd never forgive myself if baby got whooping cough and died as a result. My midwife said 400 babies/children died of whooping cough last year. That was all I needed to know!

bigkidsdidit Fri 24-May-13 06:46:49

I had it. My reasons being i didn't want my newborn to get whooping cough! There is an outbreak where I live.

busybeeme Fri 24-May-13 07:47:21

I'll be having it in a couple of weeks.

As I understand it has been common to give to pregnant women in the US for some time even though it is new here. This gave me additional comfort

marzipananimal Fri 24-May-13 07:59:08

I would have thought if you've had the illness you wouldn't need the vaccine, but ask your GP. I haven't had it because I had a bit of a strange reaction to the jab when I was a baby so it seemed like it might be a risk, and my baby is due in summer when presumably there's less of it around

Featherbag Fri 24-May-13 08:01:28

I'll be having it whenever it's recommended, I'm only 12/40 at the moment though. Will be at the front of the queue for the flu jab too.

MrsBri Fri 24-May-13 08:02:36

But the immunity isn't for you, it's for baby, so even if you've had it you still need it. Baby gets just enough through the placenta to immunise it until it gets vaccinations.

Ultimately it's up to you, but I wouldn't risk it.

boardingschoolbaby Fri 24-May-13 08:06:14

I had wc as a child but was still recommended to have the vaccine (which I did) as your level of immunity decreases over time so would be virtually zero by now. Our baby came on Tues and he is perfect. WC is on the increase again and I certainly didn't want the extra worry of him picking something up which can be so easily prevented and can have devastating consequences. Your GP or you midwife will be able to talk it all through with you so don't feel that you have to make your mind up yet if you are at all worried.

bigkidsdidit Fri 24-May-13 08:21:44

The other thing is it is not only infecting babies now - my friend, who is a consultant in a respiratory ward, said they are seeing lots of elderly people very seriously ill with it indeed, as the babies are infecting their grandparents.

RuckAndRoll Fri 24-May-13 08:24:19

Benefit Vs Risk assessment for me. The risks of not getting it were just too high for my liking so had it this week (28 weeks). I was told your immunity is irrelevant and won't necessarily protect the baby.

Talk to your midwife and/or GP though as it's got to be a personal decision.

BumbleBee2011 Fri 24-May-13 08:27:15

I'm 36 weeks pg, had my jab at 32 weeks.

Yesterday I got an email from DC1's nursery to say one of the staff has been diagnosed with WC, so quite glad about the timing and the fact I was offered the vaccine.

Dolallytats Fri 24-May-13 08:32:14

Thank you for reminding me, I am 31+4 and had completely forgotten about it. I must book an appt at the GP to get it done.

StuckOnARollercoaster Fri 24-May-13 09:43:31

I thought they are giving you the same jab they would have given to the baby in the first few months, just earlier via you so the little one may be protected earlier.
I did lots if reading at the time and decided to go for it, even though they can't be completely sure.
As with so many drugs/vaccines the studies are never completely sure about effects on pregnancy because of the ethical dilemmas of testing on pregnant women.
I take the view that medical practices have come a long way since thalidomide and would rather take a vaccine that is recommended now rather than risk my children and wait for 5 to 10 years to see if it turned out ok to give the vaccine, by which point it's too late for my child and they have been exposed to the whooping cough which is going around right now...

plentyofsoap Fri 24-May-13 09:44:52

I was thinking the same as I had wc as a baby and nearly died. I asked the midwife if I was still immune and she was very vague. I will have it though as it is not worth the risk to baby.

ReikiMummy Fri 24-May-13 12:25:29

33w today....
Having jab later this afternoon. smile WC is not something I'd want anyone to go through having had it as a child.... sad

FoofFighter Fri 24-May-13 13:00:14

I understand that the vaccine was previously not recommended for under 3's

I think you are a bit misinformed here, the jab is exactly what our babies have at 2, 3 and 4 months old and have done for years. In other countries such as US they've been doing this for pregnant women for a while.

Re immunity, I have read that it can wear off over the years.

I will be having it next week, no question. A school friend of mine had it, and it was bloody horrible.

Don't leave it too late, it takes a few weeks to get across to the baby I have read and you want to give it enough time to make the antibodies or however it works am no medic!! which is why they would prefer you to have it between 28-32 weeks.

Theyoniwayisnorthwards Fri 24-May-13 13:05:06

I did and I'm glad I did. Felt rough for a day or so afterwards but can't be sure that's as a result of jab. At 5 weeks DS2 got bronchialitis from a cold his brother brought home from nursery. It was mild but I still didn't sleep for 3 days watching over him all night, I can only imagine how hard it would be to have a tiny baby go through WC. Just not worth risking.

OrangeFootedScrubfowl Fri 24-May-13 13:22:05

I wish I hadn't bothered. I had my baby premature the next day so it was a bit pointless!

fatandlumpy Fri 24-May-13 13:31:42

Having it this afternoon!

MsPickle Fri 24-May-13 13:33:25

I had it at 30 something weeks although I had wc at the time, my gp felt and I agreed that it made sense to ensure immunity in the lo as there was so much around.

It was bloody miserable having that cough, esp being pregnant & very sick with it!

bonzo77 Fri 24-May-13 13:35:48

I had it. Benefits out weighed the risks. I was likely to have a prem baby with breathing problems. He didn't need wc too. He was prem and did need help breathing. He's fine (nearly 6 months now).

BabyHMummy Fri 24-May-13 14:59:21

Not been offered it, but will be having it as and when it gets mentioned. As other posters say, risks of the diseases effects on baby far outweigh any risks to me or side effects

MrsBri Fri 24-May-13 15:35:52

You may find it doesn't get mentioned, so I'd make a note to make an appointment when you get to 28 weeks. I wasn't told / reminded; I had to just use my initiative!

Same with the flu jab. I just got that done in early pregnancy without being prompted.

bigkidsdidit Fri 24-May-13 15:38:28

yes it wasn't offered to me, I had to phone my GP to arrange myself

Gingerbreadpixie Fri 24-May-13 16:07:03

Thank you all for the replies. It's really helpful to hear so many of you had it and were happy to do so.

FoofFighter - I thought I had read that it's the pre-school booster version of the vaccination that pregnant women are given. Not the "baby" version. Though I'm fully aware that just because I read it doesn't make it so! Prob a question for my doctor.

And also that the US version is not the same jab because our version also contains Polio.

I have my GP appointment booked to discuss it in a few weeks time so I'll jot down any questions I might have and hopefully she can answer them.

ReikiMummy Fri 24-May-13 16:16:14

To all of those of you who are due to go have the jab.... ASK THE NURSE TO PUT A LITTLE PLASTER ON IT AFTERWARDS!!

Am not a happy bunny. I "leaked" red stuff all over my shirt I found when I got home.

sad

New shirt as well.

Snowflakepie Fri 24-May-13 16:32:33

I had it. It is definitely the baby version, given at 2,3,4 months. Yes it does contain the polio and diphtheria vaccines as well but that's apparently the only option.

Either way, I could never live with myself had I not had the jab and then something happened. My brother had WC as a baby and was desperately ill. He recovered but still suffers horrendous chest infections every winter, even in his 30s. Maybe not related but its a horrible illness which can cause damage if not death. I had it done at 30 weeks and my arm was very sore for a few days, couldn't lift it above my head but then it went. A small thing to suffer really.

I also had the flu jab at 6 weeks with no issues. When I was expecting DD (now 3.5) the big scare around bird flu was going on and I thought long and hard about having the flu jab then as there were so many scare stories about it. I had it, and DD is perfect and as bright as you like. As far as I can tell at 36 weeks, DS is also ok. Certainly make sure you ask any questions if it makes you feel easier. In my case it was a nurse who gave the jabs and she was very knowledgable. As she said, it might help, it might not, but it is very very unlikely to cause issues in someone with no other health problems. That made sense to me. Good luck with your pg!

fatandlumpy Sat 25-May-13 08:34:38

Had it yesterday afternoon... got it in the right arm as I sleep on my left. Got a wee plaster too so I didn't bleed on my shirt. I didn't feel a thing at the time (truly!). Was surprised by that as it has to be into the deltoid.

The arm is a little tender this morning, but no other effects.

Queazy Sat 25-May-13 10:23:08

I'm due to get it in next couple of weeks. I think I'll just go for it - I'd rather know the baby was protected as there have been some nasty cases of this recently.

Fakebook Sat 25-May-13 10:52:38

I would definitely get it. I'm getting the flu jab too.

Gingerbreadpixie Sat 25-May-13 11:10:06

I've had a little look at the Public Health website. They have the minutes from the meeting where it was decided to go ahead with vaccinating women. There was nothing of huge concern on there but it did raise a couple of questions for my GP.

One is that it seems that Repevax is the name of the vaccine is being used for pregnant women. This is the vaccine usually only given to over 3-year-olds. The wc jabs given to small babies are Infanrix or Pediacel.

So I'm going to ask my GP why Repevax isn't recommended for small babies.

The other is that even if Repevax is given to a pregnant woman it doesn't guarantee her baby's immunity to wc. I'm going to ask GP if she knows of any cases where mum had the jab and baby still caught wc.

At the end of the day my GP is pregnant herself so I will most certainly take her guidance on this. But I don't think it hurts to ask questions.

Lydia161290 Sat 25-May-13 11:25:28

I had mine on Tuesday, it was no bother at all. I chose to get it because I don't want my child getting whooping cough and want to do everything in my power to make sure he has a healthy start.
What other people have said, it's immunity for your baby, not for you.

I was nervous about getting it, sure. I was worried in case it would harm him! The nurse was lovely and reasurred me that it's not a live vaccine and is completely safe for me and baby.

I had no side affects from the needle, bar a sore arm for a day. Baby continued kicking away and I feel good.

MrsBri Sat 25-May-13 11:29:30

Interesting BBC article about it:

m.bbc.co.uk/news/health-19751209

MrsBri Sat 25-May-13 11:30:41

If you're on a computer you may need to remove the m at the beginning of that link.

Gingerbreadpixie Sat 25-May-13 11:43:35

Thank you for that link MrsBri. Really helpful.

As a side note, in case it sounds like im really anti this vaccine, the insulin I take for my diabetes isn't licensed in pregnancy either. Just because it hasnt been around long enough and no clinical trials havent been done (unethical to do!) Yet I made the decision to stay on it for pregnancy as it is gives me the best glucose control. And good control is v important for baby's health. And I inject that several times a day!

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