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Rotavirus vaccine

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What is rotavirus disease?

  • It is a virus that causes diarrhea and vomiting in babies and young children
  • It can also cause fever and stomach pain
  • It is contagious and could be a serious threat to infants; can also cause death
  • It is spread by the fecal-oral route, by hands touching objects such as toys and hard surfaces that have been infected by the virus
  • It can also be spread through coughing and sneezing

Who should get Rotarix®?

Publicly funded for infants 6 weeks of age to 24weeks , with an interval of at least 4 weeks between doses

Who should not get Rotarix®

The vaccine should not be given if an infant has/is:

  • Had a bad reaction to the vaccine or an ingredient in the vaccine
  • Acute febrile illness
  • Taking medications or has any diseases that lower the immune system or increase bleeding
  • Had intussusception (a form of bowel obstruction)
  • Received blood transfusions or blood products within 42 days of vaccine
  • Moderate to severe gastroenteritis (diarrhea, vomiting and fever)

Rotarix® should:

  • Not be given with oral polio
  • Not be given to adults
  • Be given with caution to infants who are in contact with people who have cancer or have weak immune systems

Is Rotarix® safe?

  • Yes
  • May be given to infant who is breastfed
  • Serious reactions to the vaccine are rare

When should I call my doctor?

Call your doctor if your child has any of these problems within 3 days of getting this vaccine:

  • Hives
  • Crying for more than 3 hours
  • Swelling of face or mouth
  • Trouble breathing, hoarseness or wheezing
  • Very pale color and tiredness
  • High fever (over 39° C or 102.2° F)
  • Convulsions (muscle spasms) or seizures
  • Other serious problems

How can rotavirus be prevented?

  • Have your baby vaccinated with the rotavirus vaccine.
  • Wash your hands and your child’s hands to help prevent the spread of germs, especially after changing baby’s diaper.
  • If your child is ill or vomiting they should stay home from day care until he/she is symptom free for at least 24 hours.

If you have any questions speak with your health care provider or call the Vaccine Preventable disease Program at the Haldimand Norfolk Health Unit at 519-426-6170 or 905-318- 6623.

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