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Vaccine allergy problems "rare"

Tuesday January 24th, 2012

Severe allergic reactions following vaccination are "extremely rare", experts say today.

An analysis of a two year period in the United Kingdom and Ireland has found seven cases of severe reaction - anaphylaxis.

In the two years from 2008 to 2009 specialists reported 15 cases of severe reactions but only seven of these were confirmed as anaphylaxis, according to the report in the Archives of Disease in Childhood.

The cases were reported by specialists to the British Paediatric Surveillance Unit following a request for reports.

None of the children died and three were already carrying injectable adrenaline, the researchers say.

Two reactions were two a single measles vaccine - which is not generally used in the UK and only 16,000 doses were available in Britain during the period.

There were three reactions to the new HPV vaccine which is given to teenage girls. But there were no reactions to routine pre-school vaccines, including the MMR vaccine.

Researcher Dr Mich Lajeunesse, of University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust's children's allergy clinic, said: "This is extremely reassuring data for the general public and healthcare workers alike.

"Despite its limitations, the small numbers of cases reported are likely to be a true estimate of anaphylaxis rates."

Archives of Disease in Childhood January 24 2012 doi 10.1136/archdischild-2011-301163

Tags: Allergies & Asthma | Child Health | Pharmaceuticals | UK News

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