Category Archives: Polio

  • Mikey and His Grandma: A Vaccine Story

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    “Mandy, can he try Jello?” my mother asks me conspiratorially, as she cuddles her last grandchild in her arms at the Chinese buffet. Mikey Wale is my third child, so the answer is almost always yes. “Why not?” I say, and she tenderly feeds him a tiny red morsel.  He drools it right back onto […]

  • How Effective Are Childhood Vaccines?

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    Modern vaccines are very effective. But nothing is 100% effective. As people know, children can – sadly – be harmed in a car accident even if they are in a car seat. But a car seat is a worthwhile protection because it dramatically reduces the chances a child will be harmed or die. The same […]

  • Vaccines and Autism: One Doctor’s Personal Story

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    There has been a lot of talk since 1998 as to whether vaccines cause autism.  Though I have been loath to enter this conversation, it has become apparent that perhaps I should speak in order to provide a helpful, even fresh perspective.  Here is our family’s story. In 1987, my youngest sister was born, the […]

  • The Dreadful Swiftness of Disease

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    It was September of 1951, the year I was born. I was only five months old — too young to remember the details — but as I grew older I watched the aftermath. My mother often told me the story of the worst day of her life. My brother, Mike, was in kindergarten. It was […]

  • Making the hard choice to protect

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    My son, H, had his 12 month well visit one Friday where he received the pneumonia, MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella), and Hepatitis A vaccinations. His fever started on Thursday. He woke up with it. He was less energetic than usual, less playful. Even the cone-sorting toy could not lure him to the floor for […]

  • Learning from the Past: Gae’s Story

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    I am a sixty-nine year old Australian, which means that I benefited from a totally free childhood immunization program.  I started school in 1949 and was convinced that it was somehow normal for every school to have at least one, and sometimes more than one, child wearing calipers as a result of polio. And those were […]