Ask the Expert

Q:  Lately, I’ve been hearing concerns in the media about vaccine safety.  Should I have my child with Down syndrome vaccinated?

A:  Absolutely!  Your child deserves to be protected from vaccine preventable diseases.  Despite some recent media scares, currently recommended vaccines are very safe.  Although any vaccine can have associated risks, these are low and the benefits (defense against serious and life-threatening illness) far outweigh any risks.  Your primary care doctor should be able to discuss your concerns with you in greater detail.  Also, although it can be difficult to sort out good information from misinformation on the internet, there are some excellent web-based resources to answer any additional questions you may have: 

VaccineEducationCenter, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

www.vaccine.chop.edu

Immunization Action Coalition

www.immunize.org

Centers for Disease Control & Prevention

www.cdc.gov.nip

 

Maria Stanley, M.D.

Ann Whitehill Down Syndrome Program

RileyHospital for Children

Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics

Indiana University School of Medicine