Study Shows Huge Increase in Vaccine Side Effects When Premature Infants Vaccinated
I have always questioned the wisdom of vaccinating the extremely vulnerable premature infants in the NICU when they weigh less than a typical newborn and have not even reached their due date. The practice of giving vaccines as usual to premature infants has been going on for the past few decades, for as long as I have been a pediatrician. It was assumed to be safe. Presented here, is a huge study, “Adverse Events After Routine Immunization of Extremely Low-Birth-Weight Infants,” June 2015 in JAMA Pediatrics. You can read it here…
The study looked at 13,926 extreme-low-birth-weight (ELBW) infants born at 28 weeks gestation or less, who were discharged from January 1, 2007, through December 31, 2012 from 348 NICU’s. They looked at the incidence of sepsis evaluations, need for increased respiratory support, intubation, seizures, and death. The findings should put an immediate halt to this practice, as clearly there is an association with harm and even death.
The results showed that 91.2% of the 13,926 infants received 3 or more immunizations. The incidence of sepsis evaluations increased 370%. The need for increased respiratory support increased 210%, and intubation increased 170%. There were 5 deaths around the time of vaccination.
Given the extremely low possibility of premature infants in a NICU getting infected with the diseases that we typically vaccinate against (pertussis, diphtheria, tetanus, haemophilus, pneumococcus, polio, and hepatitis B and rotavirus), I can only make one conclusion from this study: Do NOT vaccinate your extremely low birth weight infant while in the NICU on the usual schedule based on birth date. I would recommend a modified schedule, only covering those diseases the infant is at risk for and vaccinating right before discharge from the NICU. Newborns whose mothers don’t have Hepatitis B are not at risk for Hepatitis B. That vaccine should definitely wait, until your baby is closer to being sexually active. Polio and rotavirus can wait. Consider not giving the DTaP and Prevnar at the same time as they both have way too much aluminum.