Lyme Disease season is HERE and it’s worse than ever

This is a great little informational video on this year’s tick season: HERE

It’s a little hard to understand because Dr. Goudarz has a thick accent, so I’ve dictated the important points below! Please read because if you live in the northeast (US), this year’s tick season is BAD.

Here we go…

It’s summertime and that means ticks and consequently, Lyme disease is on the rise. There has already been a higher rate of infection his year so far US northeast.

Why?

There have been exceptionally warm winters in the northeast, as well as reports and evidence of a higher number of white-footed mice (main reservoir for lyme and three other pathogens).

Ticks are being tested and researchers are finding more than 1/3 of ticks testing positive for lyme. And on top of that, an increasing number of ticks infected with another tick-associated disease. Continue reading

Chickenpox parties?? Natural immunity is NOT better.

Someone mentioned “Chickenpox parties” the other day, and while I had heard of that before, this time it really got me heated. Of course, I went ahead and started searching out some information, because that’s what I do, and found some pretty disturbing photos. (Spare yourself from seeing them.) They weren’t photos of just the chicken pox (that’s not the disturbing part), they were photos of really sick and spotty children playing with healthy, happy children–children oblivious to the fact that next week they’d be itchy, fevery, and potentially extremely ill. Guys, these kids could end up in the hospital, or worse…
 
It’s making me sick just thinking about it right now.

Continue reading

What’s the difference between Tdap and DTaP?

The DTaP vaccine is for children 0-7 years and the Tdap vaccine is the booster given at age 11 and to adults age 19-64.

Both are inactivated bacterial vaccines that protect against diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis.

We consider Tdap to be a booster vaccine because of it’s reduced dose of diphtheria and pertussis. Getting this booster after having the DTaP vaccine is important because the immunity from DTaP wanes after the vaccine given at age 4-6.

Since immunity wanes over time, the current recommendation is that everyone needs a booster for tetanus and diphtheria every ten years. This booster given to adults is called Td. It is also recommended that one dose of Tdap should be substituted for a Td dose in adults between 11 and 64 years.  Continue reading

A baby gave ME whooping cough–Marguerite’s Tale

It’s January 2006 and Marguerite is working as the lead teacher in the infant room at a daycare. In the season of viral colds, these small children are in and out of the classroom with stuffy noses and watery eyes almost daily. But she notices that one child has been particularly sick for several days and is not looking well. She sends the child home with a fever and reminds the parents of the daycare policy: the child must be fever free for 24 hours before returning to class.

Thinking nothing of it, she returns to work. Two days later the child returns, however gets sent home the following day, again, with a fever. This time the parents take the child to the doctor where they send him to the hospital–a hospitalization that lasts three days.

At around the time the child is hospitalized Marguerite starts to feel like she’s coming down with similar symptoms. The first few days she feels like she has a bad cold and then she gets woken in the night by a terrible coughing attack. Now her throat full of mucous and she’s having difficulty breathing. Continue reading