Rotavirus vaccination passé

The gastroenteritis caused by the Rotavirus does not pose a danger to otherwise healthy children and in the worst cases leads to a short infusion treatment at the hospital. Breast fed children only rarely contract a virally induced gastroenteritis.

Since 2013 an oral vaccination against Rotavirus (causative agent of diarrhea) is recommended for all infants in Germany beginning before the 13th week of life. When introduced to the market it was known that the vaccination could induce a life threatening inward folding (invagination) of the intestinal wall that could require an emergency operation in some cases.

In the first two years of Rotavirus vaccination in France 47 infants had an invagination (risk ca. 6:100,000). Fourteen of these infants had to be operated, two required reanimation, and two passed away. Apparently the invagination caused by the vaccination has a more severe course than does the naturally occurring variant, probably also because it happens at an earlier age. The French government rescinded the vaccination recommendation in April 2015 due these risks.

In Germany the STIKO is stubbornly insisting on its recommendation, despite the 143 children that have suffered up to april 2016 an invagination after the vaccination. In one of six cases a small section of intestine had to be removed, in seven children a permanent damage was reported, one of them died.

Instead of rescinding the vaccination recommendation the STIKO now recommends that Pediatricians advise parents, “that a invagination can coincide with the Rotavirus vaccination and how such an invagination can be recognized early. The symptoms of an invagination include cramp-like stomach pains, vomiting, unusual screaming, refusing to eat, and especially bloody stool” (STIKO 5.12.2015).

To those who read this warning it is clear that the recommendation for the Rotavirus vaccine is a stillbirth.

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