At West Side Pediatrics we believe it is important to keep up with the recommended vaccine schedule for your child. Staying on target with the schedule as advised by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is a very important step in maintaining good health for your child. Click on the link below to find out more on:
The availability of vaccines has made quite a difference in the quality of life for our children. Currently, there is a vast amount of information out there on vaccines, some of it very confusing. As a parent, it is quite natural to seek out reliable sources of information to help you arrive at the very best decision concerning vaccines for your child.
One aspect of vaccination that has resulted in conflicting information, is the use of preservatives in vaccines. Of these, thimerosal is probably the most widely known. Thimerosal is a mercury-containing compound. Its main role is to stop the growth of bacteria and fungus. It is sometimes necessary to package vaccines in what’s called multi-dose vials. Each time a needled is inserted into one of theses vials, there is the possibility of germs entering the vial. The presence of thimerosal will prevent the growth of potentially deadly bacteria.
Today, the majority of childhood vaccines do not contain thimerosal. There is only one vaccine used for recommended immunizations that containa trace amount of thimerosal, the multi-dose flu vaccine. Interestingly, the type of mercury found in thimerosal-containing vaccines is easily broken down and cleared out of the blood. This is very different from the type of mercury found in certain types of fish we eat, which can accumulate in high levels over time and harm the nervous system.
Unfortunately, social media has served as a platform for significant misunderstandings to develop about the thimerosal contained in vaccines, including claims that it causes autism. It is important to understand that after extensive research (across many countries), there has never been anything discovered to support this claim. The thimerosal found in vaccines does not cause autism.
We encourage you to discuss any ongoing concerns you may have about vaccinations with us during your next visit to our office. It is our mission to provide the best possible care for your child and we can only achieve this by serving as a resource for you.
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