Thursday, October 25, 2007

Merck's RotaTeq Vaccine Not Associated With Life-Threatening Intestinal Problem

Article in the Wall Street Journal -- Merck Vaccine Seems Unlinked to Infant Malady, by Jennifer Corbett Dooren.  Here's an excerpt:

A Merck & Co. vaccine designed to protect infants against rotavirus doesn't appear to be associated with an increased risk of a potentially life-threatening intestinal problem known as intussusception, according to information compiled by federal health officials.

The Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have been tracking the vaccine, sold under the brand name RotaTeq, to look for any links to intussusception because a rotavirus vaccine made by Wyeth was pulled from the market in 1999. The Wyeth vaccine was linked to an increased rate of intussusception, which is a twisting or obstruction of the intestine.

The FDA issued a public-health notice earlier this year saying it had received 28 reports of intussusception in vaccinated infants, and it asked health-care providers to be certain to report any suspected cases of the problem. At the time, the FDA said the intussusception rate wasn't higher than the rate that would be expected among nonvaccinated infants.

BGS

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