Friday, February 8, 2008

awesome idea for a class-action lawsuit

i have a ton of stuff to write about at the moment, but i am going to set it all aside for an awesome idea for a class-action lawsuit (cindy, if you are reading this, this is for you!).

the above picture is sophie, as of this afternoon. she has shingles. she is 20 months old, perfectly healthy, not immunocompromised or immunosuppressed, and she has shingles. the strange thing is, she has never had the chicken pox. traditional wisdom says that you must have one (chicken pox) to have the other (herpes zoster), but she and a very few others are proving this to no longer be so. sophie, like all kids under 12 or so, had the chicken pox vaccine. sophie had only one dose--a recent change in vaccination policy from two doses, which gus had--and it was thought that one dose is/was enough to prevent the child from contracting chicken pox. and it probably is enough to prevent the kid from coming down with the first instance, but it does not prevent the child from acquiring the virus itself in their system.

confusing? you bet. sophie went with me and gus on the trip from hell just after christmas to visit my mom, who had recently broken out in shingles over the stress of her move and lindsay's wedding. i called sophie's pediatrician and asked if it would be alright for her to be around my mom, as her infection was fairly new and fairly acute, and she said no problem. so, we went on the trip from hell and sophie seemed fine. what we think must have happened is that since she was exposed to the virus via my mom it still got into her system but didn't manifest itself as chicken pox. however, 5 weeks later, sophie does definitely have shingles. so the virus still got in her system, attached itself to whatever nerve endings (in her case it is along her left leg), and blossomed as shingles rather than chicken pox.

hence my (actually, rich's) awesome idea for a class-action lawsuit: there is absolutely no critical reason to get the chicken pox vaccine. while it can prevent the initial chicken pox breakout, it cannot prevent the far more serious herpes zoster (shingles). thus this shot ain't doin' what it ought. and the fact that my 20-month old now has shingles is more than disconcerting, and i feel like this vaccine has to have something to do with it. i am ready to hire turner branch and get this ball moving! there must be more people out there with kids who developed pediatric shingles--a fairly rare disease--whose children had the varicella vaccine.

why do doctor's kids always get the funky diseases and disorders?

1 comment:

  1. My daughter is 9 years old and has to deal with reaccuring shingles out breaks because of the failure to tell parents that the chicken pox shot can cause a more serious condition then the condition it is suppose to prevent.