California Advises Pregnant Women to Take Tdap Vaccine: Dr. Bob Sears Weighs In
Posted Aug 26 2010 12:00am
Dr. Bob Sears talks about California advising all pregnant women to take a Tdap vaccine, even though testing has not been done on this population, or their fetuses. Read the full post and please comment at Huffington Post HERE. His advice? "Parents Beware."
I usually don't get all worked up over vaccine issues. I calmly promote the idea of alternative vaccine schedules and I like to help parents make educated decisions. But when I see the government try to do something really stupid, I get mad. And right now I am really angry. The last time I got mad was when the government decided it was OK to give pregnant women mercury-containing H1N1 flu vaccines.
A pharmaceutical rep just came into my office and handed me a letter stating that the California Department of Public Health has advised all Californian women of childbearing age get the Tdap vaccine. They state "preferably before pregnancy, but otherwise during or after pregnancy."
Now I can understand and applaud their zeal in wanting to combat the pertussis epidemic. Pertussis is dangerous for young infants. Usually about 20 infants die each year from pertussis, and this year we are headed for about 30 or 40. Making sure new moms and dads have some pertussis protection makes sense.
On the other hand, the Tdap (or ANY pertussis vaccine for that matter) has NEVER been tested for safety during pregnancy. The vaccine product insert, as well as the letter I got from the pharmaceutical company, states very clearly that the vaccine is not indicated for pregnant women and has never been tested...