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Jay Koovarjee

 92 Pitt St
Sydney NSW 2000
ph: (02) 9221 0091
fax: (02) 9221 0090

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:: In Brief

 

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:: Immunisation

Healthy Childre & Teens - Immunisation
  Healthy Children & Teens
  Immunisation

Immunisation can protect people against harmful infections, which can cause serious complications, including death.  Immunisation uses the body’s natural defence mechanism - the immune response - to build resistance to specific infections.  All forms of immunisation work in the same way.

There are two reasons for immunising every child in Australia:

  1. Immunisation is the safest and most effective way of giving protection against the disease. After immunisation, your child is far less likely to catch the disease if there are cases in the community. The benefit of protection against the disease far outweighs the very small risks of immunisation.
  2. If enough people in the community are immunised, the infection can no longer be spread from person to person and the disease dies out altogether. This is how smallpox was eliminated from the world, and polio has disappeared from many countries.When a person is vaccinated, their body produces an immune response in the same way their body would after exposure to a disease, but without the person suffering any symptoms of the disease. When a person comes in contact with that disease in the future, their immune system will respond fast enough to prevent the person developing the disease.

Vaccines contain either be:

  • a very small dose of a live, but weakened form of a virus;
  • a very small dose of killed bacteria or virus or small parts of bacteria; or
  • a small dose of a modified toxin produced by bacteria
  • Vaccines may also contain either a small amount of preservative or a small amount of an antibiotic to preserve the vaccine
  • Some vaccines may also contain a small amount of an aluminium salt which helps produce a better immune response.

Side Affects:

  • Local reactions – Redness and/or swelling at the injection site
  • Fever – Fever is common and can cause irritability. Febrile convulsions (convulsions caused by high fever) occur in about one in 10,000 one-year-olds immunised with measles vaccine, but these children all fully recover. In contrast, febrile convulsions occur in about 1 in 200 children who catch measles
  • Prolonged crying – Prolonged and often high-pitched crying, lasting for several hours, is most common in babies after DTPw (not DTPa) vaccines
  • Hypotonic-hyporesponsive episodes – These are rare but frightening episodes, occurring one to 24 hours after an immunisation, in which the baby goes pale, floppy and unresponsive. They are more common with DTPw than with DTPa, and more common with DTPa than with non-pertussis vaccines. All children recover fully
  • Fainting – School-age children may often faint at the time of, or soon after, being given an immunisation. Occasionally the fainting child will have a brief episode of twitching of the face or limbs, known as a fainting fit. This very rarely causes any long-term damage

Some of the more serious side-effects include Encephalopathy (any disorder of the brain that causes impairment of brain function), Encephalitis (a disorder of the brain caused by inflammation), Anaphylaxis (an immediate collapse due to an allergic reaction to a vaccine),Vaccine associated paralytic poliomyelitis (VAPP) (polio caused by the oral form of the polio vaccine (OPV) itself) 
 

 Vaccine Schedule:

Birth
Hepatitis B (hepB)
2 months, 4 months, 6 months
Hepatitis B (hepB)
Diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough (acellular pertussis) (DTPa)
Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
Polio (inactivated poliomyelitis IPV)
Pneumococcal conjugate (7vPCV)
Rotavirus
12 months
Hepatitis B (hepB)
Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib)
Measles, mumps and German measles (rubella) (MMR)
Meningococcal C (MenCCV)
12-24 months
Hepatitis A (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in high risk areas)
18 months
Chickenpox (varicella) (VZV)
18-24 months
Pneumococcal polysaccharide (23vPPV) (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in high risk areas)
Hepatitis A (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in high risk areas)
4 years
Diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough (acellular pertussis) (DTPa)
Measles, mumps and German measles (rubella) (MMR)
Polio (inactivated poliomyelitis) (IPV)
10-13 years
Hepatitis B
Chickenpox (varicella) (VZV)
12-18 years (School based program)
Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
12-26 years (Community based program)
Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
15-17 years
Diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough (acellular pertussis) (dTPa)
15-49 years
Influenza (flu) (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are medically at-risk)
Pneumococcal polysaccharide (23vPPV) (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are medically at-risk)
50 years and over
Influenza (flu) (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people)
Pneumococcal polysaccharide (23vPPV) (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people)
65 years and over
Influenza (flu)
Pneumococcal polysaccharide (23vPPV)
 

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