2.05.2015

The Measles are Coming

Just so you don't freak out, this is not a blog about children and vaccines. I'm not remotely interested in touching that subject with a 10 foot responsibly harvested pole. This is a blog about immunocompromised adults and the measles.

It's taken a few months and several doctors to finally figure out my status with that measles booster I had 20 years ago on my way to college. I started asking long before Disneyland erupted into the least magical place on earth, and it took 3 doctor's not knowing and a random Facebook post before I finally had my answer.

Knowing that there were small pockets of measles here and there, I thought it might be nice to know that my immunities were up to date as I venture back into the mystical Land of Neutropenia in a few weeks.

After asking my most recent doctors about my own status, I was surprised to walk away without a clear answer on my own immunity and what I should do to make sure I was protected. This is where you become your own best advocate.

If I was a normal, healthy adult, I would take my chances and hope that the resulting antibodies produced 20 years ago were still performing synchronized swimming sessions in my blood stream. But I'm not, and if you're also immunocompromised, you should pay attention.

After being failed by the above mentioned doctors, it was an "Ask a Physician's Assistant" night on a local new station's Facebook page that finally saved the day. It caught my eye immediately, and the first question was asked by a women who was a recent organ transplant recipient, and a fellow immunocompromisee. She had the same concern I did. Sure, there were boosters in our pasts, but were those boosters still effective enough to protect those of us with useless immune systems should we cross paths with the highly infectious measles?

Thanks to this PA and social media, I learned that there is a simple blood test that can determine your immunities. Go figure. You might think most doctors working with immunocompromised patients might suggest this? Especially around here, where a case of measles appeared at our local university last week. 

I'm not concerned about the general population and their take on vaccinating their healthy bodies. I'm concerned about a very contagious disease that has the potential to kill me and my frail immune system, and I want to do what I can to protect myself. Do you think someone intentionally filling her body with some of the worst sh*t there is really cares about the additional toxins in a vaccine she's getting? No. She cares about staying alive.

20 years, 1 blood draw, and 48 hours later I can proudly say I'm still walking around with the measles antibodies, and have avoided yet another shot.


2 comments:

Rushie & Zojji said...

Such an important post!

Wanda said...

A single blood test to determine immunities. I didn't know that. Thanks for sharing that- will probably save a lot of people a lot of stress.
Just checked it online and apparently you would have had an immediate answer by simply asking a passport officer. Apparently they use the results of it a lot.