Change seems to be occurring in the field of medicine as fast as in the field of technology. One area where we are seeing significant changes is in vaccine protocol. While there are always those who are concerned about the use or overuse of vaccines in modern medicine, I believe that with proper use, vaccines can be extremely beneficial. We pride ourselves in doing what is best for our patients which requires constant vigilance in new protocols and a holistic understanding of our patients’ and their needs. If you want more information on any of this or simply need clarification, please feel free to give us a call at 702.254.8900.
Here are some recent changes:
- Two-dose HPV vaccine – Say hello to a recommendation that one may begin the two-dose HPV series at age 9 years. The recommendation is to begin the series at that age in any child who is a victim of sexual abuse or assault. In fact, those who receive it at age 9 appear to have a more robust immune response. In the same vein, giving the two-dose series 12 months apart appears to provoke a better immune response than giving it at 6 months apart, but any time 6-12 months after the initial vaccine is acceptable.
- Hepatitis B – A new recommendation states that the Hepatitis B vaccine should be administered to newborns during the first 24 hours after birth. This represents a more stringent recommendation to get this vaccine done early.
- Tdap in pregnancy – A clear recommendation that every pregnant adolescent should receive one dose of tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis vaccine (Tdap), ideally administered between 27 and 36 weeks of gestation. This should really be repeated for each pregnancy, consistent with recommendations for older mothers.
The Biggest Changes: Things in Between
- MenB vaccine – Unchanged is a discretionary recommendation regarding administration of meningococcal serogroup B vaccine (MenB). This vaccine is available to be administered for individuals 16-23 years of age but at a discretionary agreement between the provider and the patient.
Please call us if you have any questions or visit the CDC website. I believe it is important to educate our patients so that you understand why and when specific vaccines are important and recommended for your protection and overall health.