Ask the Doctor
Questions about kidney disease? Risk factors? Signs and symptoms? Are you concerned about yourself, a friend or family member? Ask Dr. Spry.
Vaccinations, usually given as shots, protect your child from serious diseases. Some common diseases you may already know about are measles, mumps, rubella, polio, hepatitis B, diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, chickenpox and Hemophilus influenza type b (Hib) disease. These are called the "big 10." Some of these are serious or potentially serious illnesses, and some may have no cure. Your child may die from certain diseases if he or she is not vaccinated against them. Vaccinations not only protect your child from disease, they protect others around your child. For this reason, proof of vaccination is often needed before your child can enter school or childcare.
Vaccines usually contain parts of the dead or weakened bacteria or virus that cause the disease. Once your child receives a vaccine, his or her body begins to make antibodies to fight the disease, which work to protect your child if they are exposed to that disease later.
Even though your child has kidney disease, he or she needs the same vaccines as those given to children without kidney disease. Some vaccines may need to be given in a different dosage to make sure your child is protected. Two additional shots, pneumococcal and influenza, are often recommended for children with kidney disease.
Note: If your child has an organ transplant or is immune suppressed, it is important not to use vaccines made from live viruses. Live virus vaccines are given to prevent measles, mumps, rubella, varicella and oral polio. Your doctor is the best person to ask about which vaccines your child should receive.
If your child has a kidney transplant or is immune-suppressed, other adults or children in the family should not receive the oral polio vaccine. The inactivated polio vaccine, or IPV, should be used instead. Talk with your doctor before giving varicella (chickenpox) to other household members since this vaccine is made from live viruses. It is safe, however, for other children in the household to receive measles, mumps and rubella vaccine.
You should talk with your daycare provider about your child's medical condition. If your child has received an organ transplant, you should talk with your doctor about possible exposure to children who have received oral polio vaccine or other live vaccines.
Depending on the vaccine, your child may need only one shot for protection. Other vaccines may require a series of shots to be given at standard times. However, if your child is sick when the next shot should be given, it is best to wait until he or she is well again. The shot should then be given as close as possible to the regular schedule.
Your child will probably get his or her vaccines from your doctor. You may also be able to get them from your local public health department at no cost or at a reduced fee. Check to see if the cost of routine vaccines is covered by your health insurance company.
Vaccines are among the safest medications available. Some common side effects are a sore arm or low-grade fever. As with any medication, there is a very small risk of serious problemseven deathoccurring after a vaccination. However, the complications of illnesses are much greater than the risks from the vaccines.
The following table is a schedule of the most common vaccines used today in the United States. Other vaccines might be needed if you are traveling to a foreign country with your child. Speak with your doctor about these vaccines.
|Schedule for Childhood Vaccinations|
|At birth||HBV (Hepatitis B)||Transplanted and immune-suppressed children should not receive this vaccine, but they can receive the inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) at 2 & 4|
|1-2 months||DT&P (Diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis)|
|2 months||DT&P Hib/HBV (Hepatitis B)/OPV||Transplant (can receive IPV)|
|4 months||DT&P/OPV||Transplant (can receive IPV)|
|6-18 months||HBV/OPV||Transplant (can receive IPV)|
|Older than 12 months||DT&P|
|Every year after 6 mths old||Influenza A and B (flu), between Sept-Dec Age 2 Td (tetanus-diphtheria)|
If you would like more information, please contact us.
©2013 National Kidney Foundation. All rights reserved. This material does not constitute medical advice. It is intended for informational purposes only. No one associated with the National Kidney Foundation will answer medical questions via e-mail. Please consult a physician for specific treatment recommendations.