A healthy living blog from Marshfield Clinic

Ask the expert: Why do kids need so many shots?

Mom-playing-with-son-box-I-MAC_4577Editor’s note: This post was updated May 2019 to reflect current data. 

Many parents ask this question because undeniably there are a lot of immunization shots.

We follow the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations, which fortunately allow many of these shots to be combined safely in one visit.

More shots are given than even a few years ago because, as science advances, we are able to protect your child against more diseases than ever before.

Outbreaks can still occur

Even though some of the diseases we have vaccinated against for years are no longer common, they could return very easily if we stopped vaccinating.

It is not uncommon to have outbreaks of measles, whooping cough (pertussis), chickenpox and other diseases when vaccination rates drop.

These diseases may seem mild, but remember that before vaccine was available, about 4 million people got chickenpox each year in the U.S., over 10,500 people were hospitalized, and about 150 people died of this disease every year.

A persistent rumor that we hear is that some vaccines can cause autism.

This issue has been closely studied for years, and all the scientific studies and reviews have found no relationship between vaccines and autism.

Dr. Uy is a pediatrician at Marshfield Clinic Chippewa Falls Center. She specializes in keeping children well, from birth to young adulthood. Our pediatricians have access to the most comprehensive children\\’s health services network in the region.

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