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To be worried about DD having her MMR

99 replies

snowyskies · 16/04/2013 10:12

Donning flame-proof suit here but I think a good talking to might be just what I need!!

Eldest DD had MMR at 18 months. Afterwards she had 2 years of illness. Nothing major, ear infections, throat infections, pneumonia, kidney infections unexplained fevers. We went for lots of tests and nothing was found. While I'm not blaming the MMR I did have one dr tell me it was possibly because of it.

Second DD had a single measles jab at age 2. I discussed it with the drs and expressed my concerns about the effects the MMR had on eldest DD. they understood. She had a very bad reaction to the jab. Covered in spots, even on her eyelids. Raging temperature for a week and she screamed continually that whole time. The doctor said it was very unusual to react like that.

Third DD is now 5 and has not had MMR or measles jab. It's something I have researched at huge length. I have regularly discussed it with the drs and whilst they don't support me they understand my concerns but I need to do something about it. I am worried she could get measles so have booked her in for her MMR this week. The doctors have said she could well have a bad reaction.

AIBU to worry?

OP posts:

aldiwhore · 16/04/2013 10:15

Given your history YANBU to worry, personally I still think it's worth it, and you do have a knowledge of it happening before, so you're better armed. Saying that, I do not envy you.

I sincerely hope everything goes okay for you.


MsVestibule · 16/04/2013 10:20

Given your experience, no, YANBU to be worried. On balance, I think you're making a sensible decision in allowing her to have the MMR, but I'm sure I would have the same concerns that you do.

Sorry, not very helpful. If you have a DP, what does he think?


snowyskies · 16/04/2013 10:23

I always feel so embarrassed when people talk about the MMR and how people don't vaccinate. I wish it were a simple decision for me. I hate the fact that my DD could get measles and give it to another child. But I'm scared for her, the chances are it will make her ill.

My DP doesn't really mind either way. He doesn't get involved with any decisions like that.

OP posts:

TigOldBitties · 16/04/2013 10:28

I think yanbu to be concerned, I'm always a bit worried about vaccinations, and some of my DC have had bad reactions including to the MMR.

However I take the view that were they to contract the illness when not vaccinated, it would be considerably worse than the reaction they may or may not have.

Measles can be really serious, I posted before that what drove me to vaccinate at the height of the panic about the MMR vaccine was that my mum had a cousin who died from measles and my dad has had to wear glasses since contracting severe measles in the eyes as a child. Your DD may in the future be pregnant and not be immune to Rubella/German measles. I personally take comfort that with the vaccine, the illness is generally controllable as is the reaction where as for an unvaccinated child it could be quite dangerous.


Flobbadobs · 16/04/2013 10:31

Well the good point about this is that the doctors will be very aware that there may be areaction and should stay on top of it, make sure you know to go back asap if anything happens. It should be flagged up.
Another good point is that presumably as she is 5 she will only be having the mmr and nothing else (Dd2 had hers along with 2 other injections poor thing!) so she won't be overloaded with vacs.
YANBU to be worried, I'm very pro vacs but still had a wibble everytime I took any of mine for them bit you've done your research and come to what is in my mind at least the right conclusion. You're aware that it could cause a reaction and will be prepared for it.
Good luck Flowers


ChairmanWow · 16/04/2013 10:48

I think the point has been raised re the potential severity of measles - imagine how severely DD could react if she caught it considering how your other kids have reacted to the vaccine. The point about pregnancy is however an important one - there are lots of kids growing up unvaccinated meaning there will continue to be outbreaks for years to come. I was exposed to measles during my first pregnancy and it was my vaccinations that protected me and my baby.

I concur that getting your kids vaccinated is stressful, more so for you, but once the reaction is over you and your DD can have peace of mind that she has long-term protection from a potentially dangerous illness.


Callmecordelia · 16/04/2013 11:01

YANBU to be worried, especially given the history, but I think that you are doing the right thing. I expect they'll keep a close eye on your DD, and be ready if anything does go wrong.

I had my daughter vaccinated, but we are in a low vaccination area. It turns out that the MMR doesn't give 100% immunity, and she did catch measles. However, because of the vaccination, it was not as bad as it might have been.

The doctor told me that it was not a severe case. If that wasn't severe, then I dread to think what a bad case looks like. I have never seen her so ill.

Good luck.


Jenny70 · 16/04/2013 11:52

I can understand your concern, but also remember that each child has its own makeup - they are different people and can react to things differently. Hopefully your DD will sail through the MMR and have no complications, but as said by others if she does react, the doctors will be prepared and give her whatever relief they can.

Also in my mind those children that react to the tiny amount of material in the vaccine are also going to be those that react terribly if they get the real virus in their system. The vaccine is only a small number of cells, to prick the immune system into recognising these cells as bad. If the small number of viruses caused your DD to have the terrible reaction - imagine if she got the full blown disease...

Fingers crossed it goes smoothly, it's a head vs heart thing - the head knows it is a different child, might get no reaction, best thing to do to protect her, but the heart worries and reflects on past occurrences.


HerrenaHarridan · 16/04/2013 12:30

If the drs know if previous reactions and still recommend to go ahead then I think you should.

Drs do advise some parents not to vaccinate their dc.

As a pp said if they have an adverse reaction to the vaccine their reaction the virus unvaccinated would have been serious.

It's horrible though, I empathise totally my dd will be getting her mmr in 4 weeks time. I had never intended to vac her and did lots if research so that u could justify my decision. After reading countless medical reports and looking up every ingredient on the list etc I decided to vaccinate.
It is a risk, and I'm privately dreading it! The risk of not is much worse though!


traintracks · 16/04/2013 13:22

"I did have one dr tell me it was possibly because of it. "

If that is actually what the doctor said, then they were talking rubbish.

YANBU to be worried - being worried and feeling guilty is what parents do best! - but YABU to have a 5 year old daughter who isn't vaccinated when we are in the throes of a measles epidemic and it is probably just a matter of time before a child in Wales dies of it.

The whole thing about children getting too many vaccinations at one time is utter rubbish with no scientific basis to it - kids are exposed to many more immunogenic things in their day to day lives.

If your 5 year old gets measles and has serious consequences you are going to have to live the rest of your life knowing that it was your fault and that you failed to protect her. Similar for your other daughter who had the single jab (as there is plenty of research showing that single jabs are less effective and many of the clinics offering them have been shut down for various irregularities). Both those girls need 2 doses of MMR asap and your oldest needs a booster if she never had it.

I should probably declare that I am a GP and that my kids are vaccinated - in fact both my children had an extra MMR as they went to nursery before the age of 1 and I wanted to be sure that they were protected in the light of low herd immunity.

Don't forget that Andrew Wakefield was not only mistaken, he was funded by lawyers who had patients wanting to sue over MMR use. This major conflict of interest was not declared. He has been struck off the medical register (the strongest sanction that can be taken against a doctor) and in their judgement he was branded dishonest, unethical and callous.

I'll say one more thing. I work in a deprived area with high ethnic variation. All of our patients from abroad vaccinate their children. All of them. They have seen these illnesses in the recent past and know how important vaccination is. Sadly, the UK is now seeing kids seriously ill with measles and maybe that will remind people of the importance of vaccination. But some children are already suffering because of their parents misguided belief in a charlatan.

Much more info here if you are interested:


traintracks · 16/04/2013 13:32

Drs do advise some parents not to vaccinate their dc

Just spotted this.
It is very unusual for a parent to be advised not to vaccinate their child and would only be for genuine medical reasons mainly to do with the child having a poor immune system e.g. a child with HIV or who was having chemotherapy. Not for a series of unconnected illnesses.


Talkinpeace · 16/04/2013 14:08

The MMR scare was just that : a scare.
It had no basis in truth.
Your child's illness - for two years - was a natural part of being a child.

Measles, Mumps and Rubella are potentially devastating illnesses that should have been wiped out many years ago in this country
were it not for one really dodgy ex doctor and a load of really dumb lazy journalists


traintracks · 16/04/2013 15:40

Both those girls need 2 doses of MMR asap and your oldest needs a booster if she never had it.

It has occurred to me that this line in my post could be construed as giving individual medical advice, just wanted to clarify that I am making a general point about children who did not have the MMR in the usual way rather than giving specific advice.


snowyskies · 16/04/2013 15:46

My eldest DD has had a single measles booster. Middle one was advised NOT to have a booster by my GP. So I do not need to worry about any more doses for them.

OP posts:

KarlosKKrinkelbeim · 16/04/2013 15:53

"Don't forget that Andrew Wakefield was not only mistaken, he was funded by lawyers who had patients wanting to sue over MMR use. "
Lawyers never "fund" expert medical evidence. Their clients do or, where their clients are publicly funded, the Legal services Commission does. Many thousands of doctors have given opinions both in and out of court having been retained by one side of a legal dispute. presumably they should all be struck off too?
I suggest you stick to what you know which, given you're a GP, probably amounts to parrotting the DoH line on MMR and not much more. As a parent you get told that "all the studies" demonstrate MMR is safe. Ask them about the details of those studies and the average GP will gape like a stranded fish. No wonder they are not trusted.


traintracks · 16/04/2013 16:16

My understanding is that Andrew Wakefield was paid by a solicitor called Richard Barr, at a rate of £150 per hour, money which came from taxpayers via legal aid. He was paid to find evidence that could be used in a legal action against the MMR vaccine. That action later failed. Therefore he was not an objective researcher but had a huge conflict of interest. The exposure of this conflict of interest was one of the things that sparked retraction of the original Lancet paper and the fitness to practice hearing that eventually saw him be struck off.

He had also filed a patent for a single measles vaccine which is a shocking conflict of interest.

I don't think I have ever gaped like a stranded fish, maybe I should try it sometime! Perhaps we could stick to being civil?

Snowyskies I wouldn't dream of giving you personal advice as I am not your GP and don't know your children's medical issues but I would just make the general point that many clinics giving single vaccines were found to have problems with vaccine supply, cold chain etc that rendered their vaccines unreliable(plus a few that were downright fraudulent). A child or adult who has has a single vaccine can have two MMRs with no health problems. I personally had two MMRs as an adult, despite having it as a child, as the paperwork couldn't be found to prove my previous jabs, it did me no harm. If my child had had single vaccinations I would strongly consider getting them two doses of the MMR as well, given the current measles outbreak. And of course you need to consider mumps and rubella as well I have seen a case of congenital rubella in a child - in a developing country where they didn't have access to vaccinations. The thought that it could have been prevented still gets to me.


countrykitten · 16/04/2013 16:24

KKK what a stupid post and how bloody rude to traintracks who is one here trying to give sensible advice to a worried parent. This kind of nonsense on MN really makes me angry.

KKK - have you by any chance noticed what is happening in Wales....??


EldritchCleavage · 16/04/2013 16:26

Being paid to investigate something for a group involved in litigation did not of itself make Andrew Wakefield a bad, dishonest or unethical doctor. Suppressing the fact that he was being paid for that purpose certainly did. If all was above board, why on earth did he not declare the interest 9as his professional rules obliged him to do?)


Andro · 16/04/2013 17:36

Drs do advise some parents not to vaccinate their dc

They do, but perhaps not as often as they should!

OP, YANBU at all to be worried. My DS has had single measles and mumps vaccines (as advised at the time) and reacted quite badly, but his younger sister ended up in ICU after the MMR...GP still thinks I should agree to DS having MMR (snowballs chance in hell of that).


snowyskies · 16/04/2013 17:39

Andro - what reaction did your DD have?

OP posts:

Andro · 16/04/2013 17:50

snowyskies - she was one of the 'less than 1 in a million' who had a severe allergic reaction - couldn't breath, blood pressure plummeted and went into cardiac arrest before they stabilised her. It was, without a doubt, one of the most terrifying experiences I've had. The kicker is that my DD no longer trusts that our GP is there to help her, the last time we were there she had a full blown panic attack...we were only there for me to pick up a prescription!

I must emphasis, her reaction is very, very rare - the number of people who would have such a reaction is miniscule.


traintracks · 16/04/2013 19:27

Andro, that must have been terrifying. How awful for you. It is really good of you to acknowledge how rare that is - and of course she could have had that reaction to a medicine, a food or a plant when coming across it for the first time.

FWIW most hospitals do vaccination clinics where they will give the MMR to children in a hospital setting, where there is a risk of a bad reaction, that way help is closer to hand. They can be accessed via GP referral.


50shadesofmeh · 16/04/2013 19:51

It's your choice at the end of the day OP but to me the risk of measles or rubella scares me more. I had Measles as a toddler and I'm partially deaf now, I only have 2% hearing in my right ear :-(


Highlander · 16/04/2013 19:58

KKK the reason that GPs 'gape like a stranded fish' when asked to explain trials is that they are not trained epidemiologists.

Trials are peer-reviewed for publication, then the data is assessed by public health doctors, speciality doctors and NICE before a public health recommendation is made.

I may expect, for example in paediatric vaccinations, a paediatrician to have a working knowledge of a vaccine trial. I would never expect this from a GP. I would expect him/her to have up to date knowledge of NICE recommendations.


pointythings · 16/04/2013 20:12

It would be hugely helpful to get some properly funded research into where these reactions come from so that we can get better at identifying children who are genuinely at risk from vaccine reactions. That way we can protect them using herd immunity, and everybody wins.

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