Immunizations for Adults - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

1/23/08

Immunizations for Adults

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You have been told time and again about the importance of vaccinating your children. But have you had your shots? It's estimated that 50,000 adults die every year from diseases that could have been prevented and thousands more could avoid painful conditions if they would just take the time to have their shots.

Shingles is one of those painful conditions that could be avoided with a vaccination.  It is the adult version of the chicken pox and when it strikes in your senior years, it is extremely painful.  But there is a new vaccine for that. There is also a vaccine for whooping cough which can be miserable, and fatal, if it's passed on to a young child.

The CDC says that only about 2% of adults have had these shots.

Dr. Anne Schuchat, Assistant Surgeon General, said, "Everybody thinks vaccines are for children. They know that their babies need shots, or their children need boosters. And very few people think about vaccines for adults."

In all, adult vaccinations are recommended for 14 illnesses including:  measles, mumps, meningitis, certain strains of hepatitis, and, for young women, HPV.  The flu vaccine is recommended for everyone and the pneumonia vaccine is recommended for seniors and the very ill because the disease can lead to fatal complications.     

A survey by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases found that very few adults even knew that these vaccines existed. Now, the CDC is trying to get the word out that to protect your children and your grandchildren-you have to protect yourself. 

For a list of the U.S. Government's vaccine recommendations for adults and when they say you should have them, (click here). Look for the recommended adult immunization schedule.

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