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Swine Flu Jabs

(49 Posts)
WeeTiger Thu 15-Oct-09 21:05:10

Just wondered what everyone's thoughts are on the Swine Flu jab that's going to be made available to pregnant women from next week? I'm pretty unsure at the moment so wondered what everyone else's view is.

bigboobymama Fri 16-Oct-09 11:07:38

I'm more or less sure I won't be having it. No matter how safe they say it is I am still concerned, as it is a new jab...I am relatively healthy, and 7 months pregnant(due 01 Jan) and feel if I... 1) ensure my immunity remains high- healthy eating and vitamins, 2) take hygienic precautions- washing of hands, and 3) avoid high risks areas- the tube, I should be OK.
Saying that, everyone should weigh up what's right for them, and if you feel you are more at risk or have underlying conditions that will make you more vulnerable, then go for the jab.

flyingma Fri 16-Oct-09 17:14:18

Yeah I came on to see if I was the only person being overly cautious in wanting to pass on this jab. It can't have been that well tested if its being newly developed, surely?

charliemacey Tue 03-Nov-09 10:32:23

i am 5mths pregnat and not going to have this,my doctor and other doctors at the surgery are refusing to take it themselves.
what does this show you?
i dont think enough research has gone into it.
i think we are being used as gineua pigs.
people have died of the jsb in america.

cornflowers Tue 03-Nov-09 10:54:46

I am 37+3. I discussed this at length with my brother who is a doctor, and he advised me to have it. I trust his opinion so intend to do so, assuming it arrives at my surgery before I go into labour, that is! Still haven't heard anything about the timeframe for innoculating in my area.

lumpasmelly Tue 03-Nov-09 12:41:16

My consultant was initially a bit reticent, but she is now all for the jab, especially with the way that SF is progressing. I have done quite a bit of research on it (being the overly cautious type) and have weighed up that I have a 1 in 3 chance of getting swine flu at some point in the next 6 months (christmas time being the peak as people's immunity drops off a cliff as they are demob happy because of time off work, and all that socialising)....and then I am 10 times more likely to need hospital treatment if I get it than a person with no underlying conditions (pregnancy is termed an "underlying condition) - and once you are receiving treatment in hospital, who knows what you might have to take to keep you alive. The chances of the vaccine damaging me or my unborn child a very remote in comparison to the odds of something like this happening, as the vaccine is just a variant of the seasonal flu jab with women in the USA have been having for me it's a numbers game and a question of risk, and as I have 2 young children who are at nursery and school and a husband who takes the london undergroudn everyday, I feel the jab is the lesser of 2 evils. If it was my first pregnancy and I could hibernate at home all winter, and my husband travelled to work in the car and didn't have much contact with other people, I might feel differently!! It sucks I know, but I think you just need to weigh up your individual risk. BTW, I have not heard of anyone dying in the USA as a result of this specific jab - can anyone let me know where this information has come from? I don't think our government would be pushing a dangerous vaccine on such a large population, especially as there are plans to roll it out to children next, as they are the next most "at risk" group.

PanicMode Tue 03-Nov-09 12:45:02

Why don't you read the transcript of yesterday's webchat and look at the thread about it - there's a huge amount of information, and I've found reading through it all has helped me change my mind from definitely not, to definitely will.....

My brother is a doctor and has said I should have it, I have three friends who are GPs who have also been positive - my MW said it's up to me, and it appears that my own GP wouldn't know his elbow from a lower part of his anatomy, so I'm not listening to him.....

lumpasmelly Tue 03-Nov-09 12:53:02

You've also got to bear in mind all the other things that pregnant women aren't supposed to do when pregnant....i.e. not drink at all, not eat soft cheeses, not have any drug related pain relief during labour, not have the syntocin jab during the third stage of labour, not have hot baths.....the list goes on....there will always be people that are super super cautious and advise against everything and there will always be people who are anti vaccination (i.e. MMR) so we will never be in the situation where everyone is saying "yes - you should have it" have to make up your mind re. what is right for you, and then ignore the rest otherwise you will drive yourself crazy!!! At the moment there is NO evidence that the jab is unsafe - time may prove otherwise, but then we are just as likely to find out that being on our mobile phones, or having lap tops on our laps while pregnant could harm our unborn children!!!!....there will always be something! Good luck with your decision.

butterscotch Tue 03-Nov-09 13:31:17

I found an interesting article on this 28 out of 100 women in the US have died from SF so the odds are virtually 1 in 3.... pears-safe-during-pregnancy/1

However I am asthmatic and a higher risk I still don't know if I am going to or not...

ziggyf Tue 03-Nov-09 13:38:54

Interesting topic - I've decided that I will have the vaccine (my immune system is hopeless at the moment!) but am still nervous about it.

butterscotch - it's actually 28 pg women out of the 100 that have been hospitalised in the US that have died. Just to clarify, there isn't a 1 in 3 chance of a pg woman dying if she gets swine flu....

maybebaby23 Tue 03-Nov-09 14:01:22

This is so so stressful. I have gone from definately not to probably will..i did think the same as some other posters, i am healthy and fit so should be ok but i think some of the pregnant ladies who have died have been healthy and fit haven't they? The whole thing scares me to death and is ruining the last weeks of my pregnancy

Im starting to look at it like this-DD1 needs me, i can't bear the thought of leaving her should the worst happen so i think i need to do something to ty and prevent it. Im already handwashing like a loon, eating loads of fruit and veg and drinking lots to try and stay healthy but somehow i feel that maybe it isn't enough.

The other thing that worries me and pushes me more towards getting the vaccine is the fact that i am booked in for a section on 28th Dec. The thought of having major surgery and being weak and off my feet for a while in hospital knowing i haven't had the vaccine scares me

Good luck everyone, this is really awful isn't it.

lumpasmelly Tue 03-Nov-09 15:04:03

Haved posted this on other thread so apologies for repeating myself.....after going from anti jab to "pro jab" just had a conversation with my consultant who I THOUGHT was now recommending the jab and she said that this was what her "professional body of work" was saying so she had to adhere. She said that personally she would not recommend the jab in the first trimester as we do not know the impact on the developing fetus.....she would however recommend it in the third trimester as this is when risk to pregnant ladies is higher and the baby is already more or less fully formed (in fact, if born premature at this stage prognosis is very good). Unlucky for me that I am at 16 weeks and she said that personally she wouldn't recommend it at the moment as the baby's hearing is developing!!! She wants me to wait a bit longer, but in the same breath said not to wait too long as the vaccine might run out and that I didn't want to get caught up in the height of the pandemic!!! I thought she might soften the blow with a bit of "don't worry - swine flu might not be so bad, but she then went on to stress how dangerous it was for pregnant women and that 1000 pregnant women had died in Brazil and that there were pregnant women in her practice on ventilators in hospital at the moment (gulp) So looks like i have a case of really bad timing and that my best hope is to put myself in quarantine which with 2 small children in school and nursery and a husband on the tube everyday isn't really an option. I am beside myself with worry.

lingu Tue 03-Nov-09 15:22:30

I have decided to have it after reading the web chat on here from yesterday with David Sailsbury - i am 22 weeks
lumpasmelly - where does your consultant get her info from - what evidence is there that it will affect the baby's hearing if you have it at 16 weeks?! and also what evidence is there that the vaccine might run out when the government has alreay said they have ordered enough for everyone ? it really amazes me what these so called experts come out with and quite scary when we have to rely on what they say!!

lumpasmelly Tue 03-Nov-09 15:39:50

If you look at those "how the baby" develops charts, the hearing is developing at around 16 weeks and I think that this is one of the last of the "brain" type things to develop....after that it is maturation of the major organs that are already in place. I suppose that this sort of co-incides with the fact that sometimes when people get flu in the 2nd trimester, their children are born with hearing difficulties.....I think that when you are about half way through (which is between 18 and 20 weeks) then most of the important stuff is done.....hence her telling me to wait two weeks and discuss again (with I think the view of recommending it then) I think by her rationale (being super cautious) 22 weeks would be fine which I suppose makes sense as babies as young as 24 weeks can survive if born prematurely.

Not sure where she gets her info from as she isn't an immunologist, but i suppose as a very senior obstetrician with years of experience re. the development of babies in the womb, she is going to have an opinion of some sort - whether or not it is right, only time will tell as until our batch of babies are born and grown up, we won't know anything for sure. Funnily enough, all the stuff about the adjunts didn't bother her at all as I did quiz her about this. PLUS she didn't say that the baby would definitely be harmed, she said that there was no way of knowing that it definitley wouldn't, which is slightly different.

lingu Tue 03-Nov-09 16:22:50

thanks for clarifing - on the web chat the minister did make the point that the seasonal flu vaccine has not been shown to have adverse effects on the baby and i understand the flu jab is very similar in how it is made, i just think if professionals are going to express an opinion to patients it should be based on facts to back it up. i havent had a call yet to say my gp has it in yet so i will prob be about 23-24 weeks by the time i get it , if i havent changed my mind by then!

mumatsea Tue 03-Nov-09 16:42:40

am only 12 weeks but I had the jab yesterday. Pandemrix was the only one on offer. I have read up on it extensively (ad nauseum) and there does not appear to be any evidence of harm for the adjuvants and plenty of evidence of harm if you get swine flu when pregnant - the web chat yesterday gave a useful overview, I feel. The problem is that it can't be predicted which pregnant women will make it with only a relatively mild illness and which will end up in Intensive Care (or worse). The risk of serious compications is far higher in pregnancy than with seasonal flu. It is a personal decision and I am just giving my reasons - it helps that I had an additional reason (frontline medical staff). I also don't want to pass it on to my DD (under 5yrs) (Nor do I want to leave them without a mum) - yes, children can have tamiflu' but that is not without it's side-effects.

So far the only side-effect I have had has been a sore arm on the side of the jab.

(apologies for cross posting, by the way)

Oxymoronic Tue 03-Nov-09 17:30:44

I'm 31 wks preg and I think I would have it with the ultimate aim of protecting DD. I've got asthma and so have to protect myself for her.

I've got no idea whether it's safe or not, so I have to put myself and DD in the hands of those who are better educated on the subject and believe it is. I have to trust them, what other option is there? I can't believe that they would have any other agenda than saving peoples lives, why pretend it's safe if they thought it wasn't?

What I wondered was how long the jab took to work, so you could wait to see whether an outbreak was in the area and then decide.

lucy101 Tue 03-Nov-09 17:40:48

Apparently it takes around 2 weeks to have immunity - well that is what it said on the info. sheet I received this morning.

Oxymoronic Tue 03-Nov-09 17:49:49

Well at least that's something less in the decision making process for me lucy, thanks smile Who was it that sent the sheet to you?

Also, mumatsea...hope you don't mind me asking but did your GP contact you to tell you that you had the option to have the jab? And were you given an opportunity to talk to them about the pros and cons beforhand?

lucy101 Tue 03-Nov-09 17:57:22

Hi Oxymoronic - the info. sheet was given to me this morning in Dublin when I had my jab - definitely feel I made the right decision (for me!) as I think the worrying and reading and weighing up all the pros and cons was exhausting in itself.

varmit Tue 03-Nov-09 19:17:39

I had the vaccine this morning after a huge amount of deliberating. I am 16 weeks pregnant, so reading lumpasmelly's posts has terrified me! I did actually have a little cry when I left the doctors, just so worried about not having made the right decision. This is a horrible dilemma for us all. Good luck everyone!

Oxymoronic Tue 03-Nov-09 19:32:08

Sorry for the interrogation smile but can I ask mumatsea/lucy/varmit what your thought processes were in coming to the decision to have the jab? Have you just weighed the pros and cons up and come to terms with any cons there might be?

varmit Tue 03-Nov-09 20:16:37

Hi Oxymoronic
Like most other people I have been worrying and deliberating over this for a couple of weeks, I have followed all the threads and chats on here and just done my best to come to a decision. I wouldn't say I've come to terms with any cons, the thought of the medical profession doing a u turn, like so often seems to happen, and telling us all they've made a huge mistake terrifies me! But like mumatsea, I believe the proven risks of suffering complications from catching swine flu whilst pregnant are higher than any proven consequences of having the vaccine. (Although, I am aware that they can't really know what the risks are for having having the vaccine whilst pregnant, as they haven't tested it!) I also think the risks of getting swine flu are pretty high, living in London, and having a two year old in daycare.
The bottom line is I still don't know if I've done the right thing for me and my baby, and will worry about it for the rest of my pregnancy and beyond. But equally, I would've worried about catching swine flu for the rest of my pregnancy too!
Scary situation all round.

butterscotch Tue 03-Nov-09 21:10:48

Sorry ziggyf I was posting lunchtime at work so didn't get a chance to write up properly what I was trying to say!

Yes 28 of 100 women in USA have died from Swine flu when hospitalised....that doesn't however said how many had mild versions of it and didn't die....

I'm still in two minds I have a consultants appointment at 16 weeks I'm now 14 weeks so I'll probably ask more then. Consultants appointment is because I had SUV last pregnancy and a "Tramatic" birth! So hopefully they will be able to advise me then I hope to be able to make an informed decision, but I've had nothing from my GP surgery yet....

I spoke to my GP about it briefly last week was there about something else and she said they can't be sure of the long term impact on pregnant or non-pregnant people....she wasn't pro or con for it, that it was my decision......

Liloosmum Wed 04-Nov-09 10:47:32

I am 11 weeks pregnant with #2 and have decided I will have the jab when I get to my 2nd trimester. I am offered the seasonal flu jab at work and already have an appointment to have that when I'm 13 weeks.

My main reasons for having the jabs are:
-if a pregnant woman has flu it is potentially very harmful for the baby
-it is likely a pregnant woman will take longer to recover from flu, simply because your lungs have less room so your respitory system takes longer to recover
-the seasonal flu jab was going to be recommended for all pregnant women (I can't remember when 2006 or 2008 I think). I can't find any official reason why this didn't happen, I suspect it is because of the cost
-the swine flu jab has undergone the same testing as the seasonal flu jab
-I have discussed this with my GP, MW and nurse at work and all 3 said that it is a personal decision, but they will be having the jab

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