Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The MMR scare

Today marks one week since our baby got her MMR shot. It's been a crazy week. I wanted to write about it here because it might help other moms looking for information.

The day after her shot, I noticed red dots on her back. The dots spread to her tummy and legs, and then her whole body. We texted the pediatrician, and he said it was a normal reaction to the vaccine, and the rash would go away in 3 days.

But on Saturday night, our baby developed another reaction to the vaccine. (Please skip this part if you're eating.) She had a loose, watery bowel movement which is a complete opposite of her usual stools. She had another one Sunday morning, and another Sunday night. We are talking about our toddler who only poops once a week (that's her normal cycle believe it or not!), so three loose bowel movements in 24 hours alarmed me.

Amoebiasis was the first thing that I thought of. Maybe she got it from the water? I have horrible memories of bouts of amoeba in my childhood days. So I texted my mom and asked what happened to me when I got amoeba. She said I was vomiting, had fever, and LBM. Since Little Moon didn't have fever and wasn't vomiting, she probably didn't get amoeba.

Then it occured to me - could the LBM be linked to her MMR shot? Since the rashes and the LBM started after we got her vaccinated, and the shot is the only unusual thing that happened this week? So I googled. And I found many links describing how a child can get a rash and yellow watery stools after getting injected with an MMR vaccine.

What I read scared me. Why didn't I know that the MMR could ruin your child's digestive system? And that it was somehow linked to autism? Oh my gosh. I had read about vaccines when Little Moon was a baby, but I didn't see these red flags before. How could I have missed these scary information? I can't freakin believe I didn't come across it before - I used to spend hours reading about autism and child development. Mahilig ako magresearch, tapos eto namiss ko? And most importantly, why didn't our pediatrician inform us about the side effects of the vaccine?

There are a lot of moms of children with autism who said that their toddlers were perfectly normal before they got their MMR. Then their kids got rashes and diarrhea, and then regressed. Their kids stopped talking, forgot the things they've learned so far, and stopped developing mentally. I wanted to cry.

So I called Little Moon's other pediatrician and pleaded with the secretary to get us an appointment for that afternoon (they don't allow walk-ins). This other pedia is a homeopath, and a supporter of breastfeeding, so she gives me good vibes.

I was going to consult with her because there was no way I was going to go back to the pedia who gave Little Moon the MMR shot. The one who didn't even warn us about the possible side effects of the vaccine - at least man lang the part where your child can develop tummy problems! Diba? Ugh. If we went to him, he'd probably brush off my fears and say what doctors usually say - don't worry. But I didn't want that, I wanted an explanation. I wanted someone to tell me why my daughter reacted to the vaccine the way she did. I wanted to know the truth about autism and the vaccine.

So we went to the homeopath pedia, and I told her about Little Moon's loose stools, and my fear about the link to autism. She didn't downplay my fears. She didn't discredit the information I read on the internet. But what she said made my heart sink. She said before she administers the MMR vaccine to her patients, she asks the parents first about the family history of autism. If there is history, she won't do the shot. We should have been asked. I have a cousin who has autism.

This pedia was concerned that Little Moon had two reactions to the vaccine - the rashes and the LBM. She said the chances of autism developing after an MMR shot was so small, but we were treating Little Moon all the same. So she recommended probiotics and Vaucheria. The probiotics is for her tummy. The Vaucheria is for lessening the side effects of the vaccine.

Let me explain the whole brouhaha. I could be wrong here, but here's how I understand it. Vaccines can start trouble because there are heavy metals in the vaccine that can accumulate in the gut. Sometimes the child can't get rid of these, so they stay in her body. When that happens, the heavy metals can pass on to the brain. That's why there is a link to autism. Although the study that introduced this idea was discredited by the medical community many years ago, they are yet to disprove it. And that shadow of a doubt is enough for me to be very afraid for my daughter. That, and the testimonials of mothers who have shared their stories online, and this case.

So what we are trying to do is address Little Moon's tummy problem. The probiotics will help get her gut back to normal. The probiotics come in powder form, and you dissolve this in water, or mix with food. We got the Protexin Restore sachets. There's another brand we tried that come in pellet form (Bio Bita), but our baby doesn't like it. We used to just make a paste out of the Protexin and a few drops of water and feed with a spoon, but she's stopped taking it. So now we try all sorts of tricks. Today we mixed it with her mango juice, and she didn't notice the weird taste. We have to do this for a month.

The Vaucheria comes in liquid form, and you administer it through a dropper. There's no other way to give this to her because it has to be taken every 4 hours. So we toughen up, brace ourselves for some wild crying and heartbreaking pleading (she knows how to say please), and shove the dropper into her mouth. We have to do this for two weeks.

Today is Day 3 of this treatment plan. Her stools are loose and yellow, and it scares us. My readings say yellow could mean her body is not absorbing the nutrients from the food she eats or the milk she drinks. And that's another problem - she hasn't been eating since Sunday. She has even refused her favorite snack (Stick-o, that chocolate wafer stick). At least she still nurses. I just hope she gets the nutrients from my breastmilk. And she's been cranky, and only wants to be held by either her daddy or me. She cries when our househelp G carries her. They used to have fun together. The rash is starting to fade away.

We are desperately praying that this treatment plan is enough to heal her. I have been begging God to help us, to take away whatever it is that is causing havoc in her body. I am praying that she isn't in pain. And most of all, I am praying that she continues to develop normally. Lord, please make all of this scary stuff go away. I hope all this is just paranoia.

Dear moms and dads who might be reading this, I am sharing this with you because I want others to be aware. I am not urging you to say no to vaccinations. I am not saying don't get an MMR. I am not here to cause panic. What I am trying to tell you is be vigilant. We, parents, have to know what we are saying yes to. If we had learned about these things before we gave Little Moon the shot, would we still have gone for it? I don't know. But we should have been armed with information. We should have done our research. That way, we could have made an informed decision. 


  1. Jill , God is good ! I hope Ally is feeling much better and has no further complications .

  2. My husband recently shared an article on why some people don't have their kids vaccines and it really got me thinking. Why put something in the body that they don't need, specially those that has mercury, if I recall correctly. I'm all for wellness and being prepared, but now I think it's unnecessary.

    What I fear the most though is that if in the future, my son does get sick (knock on wood), I would be to blame on why he got sick because he didn't get this certain vaccine.

    I'm thankful though that Jacob has never had a reaction with his vaccines so far. He did miss 3 kinds of vaccines na since November (5-in-1, Hepa, and I forgot the other one), so I hope that doesn't change anything or will be bad for him. I want to research more about vaccines na tuloy! Thanks for the post!

  3. Hi Ms. Angeli, its me, Michelle - Donna's student from your shop! I was so glad to read your blog again... no longer on polymer clay stuff. Who was her pediatricians? Email me so we can chat. I think I mentioned to you before that Im in pediatrics and integrative medicine. Talk to you soon.


Your sweet thoughts are always welcome!