Berkeley Parents Network >
Advice about Health >
Vaccinations & Immunizations > Tetanus Vaccination
Looking for info on finding a tetanus vaccine for a one-year old which
comes without diptheria or pertusis attached. This is commonly
available for adults but difficult to find for children.
My understanding is that the tetanus vaccine is available alone,
but not without thimerosal.
i found the tetnus only shot through my daughter's
pediatrition, robin winokur. the issue i had with it is that the
tetnus only shot that they were offering had thimerisol in it
so i ended up going for the tetnus plus diptheria shot that
was thimerisol free. she needed two injections to make it
work and i felt that that would be too much thimerisol.
I'd like advice from someone who is choosing not to
vaccinate their child or who has chosen limited
vaccinations. We did some vaccinations until age 2 (not all),
including 3 of the DPT shots. We haven't vaccinated since
then. The only thing we're considering now is the tetanus
shot. I'm wondering what, if anything, people do with this
shot? Is there an alternative to a tetanus vaccine? We don't
want to vaccinate if it's not absolutely necessary, but we also
don't want to risk a tetanus infection.
I recently returned from a family group camp in Mendocino. One of the
children there, a great young boy about 9 y.o. (?) had recently hurt his
foot rather badly (lacerations of some kind) which seemed to be healing
About 2 days into the camp, he woke up sick, swollen, and couldn't open his
mouth. To make it short, he was rushed to Ft. Bragg hospital, and then
airlifted to Children's in Oakland for an extensive hospitalization. He is the
second case of tetanus in N. Ca. in half a century. Thanks to aggressive
antibiotic therapy, he's recovering.
Although generally sympathetic to all types of alternative medicine, I
definitely go for vaccination. Vaccination has a long history (100's of
years!) of success & is cheap and effective for most of us.
We did HIB, DTAP, and Polio but have opted out of MMR, Hep B,
and others that are optional. I would recommend getting
Tetanus...as one doctor told me, ''you don't want your child to
get lockjaw and die from eating dirt,'' which all kids do. As
for other diseases and vaccines, both my kids contracted
Chicken Pox so they have natural immunity to that now. I will
have my daughter get a Rubella shot when she's a bit older
since it is important for her to have this immunity before she
gets pregnant. I will also have my son get the Mumps shot when
he's between 6-10 yrs. old, assuming it is available in single
form somewhere. I've heard Mumps can cause sterility in men.
Here are my own guidelines: 1) only do one vaccine shot at a
time. This way if the child has a reaction, you know which
vaccine caused it. It also seems less stressful for the child's
immature immune system. It does require more visits to the
doctor's office or delayed shots. 2) delay vaccines. I don't
vaccinate if my child shows any signs of a cold or health
problem. 3) Ask your doctor questions and don't be afraid to
say, ''not today'' or ''not today; I'd like to do more research
but appreciate what you've told me.'' Mercury is a big deal. A
recent study linked mercury (also in high concentrations in
bigger fish, like swordfish) to the high rate of autism which
has doubled in California (can't remember over what time
period). Make sure you ask if the vaccine has mercury in it. We
actually were kicked out of one pediatric practice because we
chose not to do MMR. In certain states, California being one,
you can philosophically opt out. Schools usually require you to
sign a form acknowledging this.
We are similar to you in that my son is only partially
vaccinated. However if you have done all the DPT shots then I
believe your child only needs a booster as they enter
kindergarten and then one again when they're older. The booster
is Tetanus with a bit of diptheria rather than the full DPT
concoction (and pertussis is the controversial part of that one).
We decided to complete the series as tetanus is just too darn
scary to mess around with!
We have 4 kids; the first we vaccinated up to 15mo and the rest
have had no vaccinations. Since we don't live around horses or
cows we're not at risk for tetnus. It is possible, however, to
obtain the tetnus vaccination seperate from the Diptheria and
This is a followup to an earlier posting in which someone
advised asking the pediatrician about any mercury content in
tetanus vaccines due to a concern about autism.
Although mercury was commonly added to vaccines as a constituent
of thimoserol, a preservative, the vaccines routinely
administered to infants and young children in the United States
no longer contain this compound.
It should also be recognized that a number of recent
epidemiologic studies have found no evidence to support a causal
link between vaccinations and autism. However, it is makes
complete sense to avoid exposing your children to mercury--it's
definitely not healthy for developing brains. But these days
kids are more likely to get it from fresh fish than vaccines.
this page was last updated: Jun 24, 2005
The opinions and statements expressed on this website
are those of parents who subscribe to the
Berkeley Parents Network.
Disclaimer & Usage for
information about using content on this website.
Copyright © 1996-2014 Berkeley Parents Network