The Polio and Hib Vaccines

The Polio Vaccine
Like DPT, the polio vaccine is given five times, starting at the age of two months and ending between the ages of four and six. Some doctors may choose to give it only four times, skipping the sixth-month dose.

Polio is a very infectious disease that affects the nervous system. It can cause respiratory problems (in the 1940s and 1950s, many people ended up in iron lungs after contracting polio), paralysis, and sometimes, even death.

While the vaccine used to be administered either through injection or orally, it is now only administered through an injection. The oral vaccine did increase the risk to a child contracting the disease (about one in 2.4 million would develop the infection). However, the injection is made with a dead form of the bacteria thereby eliminating the risk of developing the infection from the immunization.

Hemophilus Influenzae B
This vaccine is more commonly referred to as Hib1. The immunization schedule against Hib1 is an injection at two months, four months, six months and 12 to 15 months.

Hib1 is a very nasty bacteria that causes meningitis, pneumonia, serious infections and severe swelling in the throat. It makes breathing difficult, and can even lead to death.

Hib1 mainly affects children under the age of five.

Before you take your child for his vaccine, learn about minimizing potential risks and read about some of the reactions you might expect after your child has had the vaccine.