A new vaccine that aims to help prevent whooping cough (pertussis) in babies has been cleared by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The vaccine, called Tdap (which stands for tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis), can now be given to pregnant women as early as 27 weeks into pregnancy. Though the vaccine has already been given to many adults, this is the first time it will be given directly to mothers during pregnancy, to help stop the spread of disease to newborns. To find out more about this new vaccine and how it works, keep reading.
In order to prevent whooping cough in newborn newborns, the Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved the use of a vaccination during the third trimester of pregnancy.
GlaxoSmithKline is the company that makes the Boostrix vaccination. According to Dr. Peter Marks, the FDA’s top vaccine expert, it is the first vaccination the government has authorised to protect newborn children from a disease by giving their moms the injection while they are pregnant.
According to data examined by the FDA, the vaccine, which is given as a single dose, was 78% effective in preventing whooping cough in babies when given to mothers during the third trimester. There were no adverse consequences on the pregnancy, foetus, or infant.
Pain at the injection site, headaches, and weariness are the most frequent adverse reactions for those who receive the vaccination.
Whooping cough, or pertussis, is a highly infectious respiratory illness that can have major health consequences for infants. Infants under two months of age cannot be protected against the disease with the standard childhood immunisation regimen.
By receiving the vaccination while they are expecting, women can safeguard their infants. Although whooping cough can affect people of all ages, the FDA reports that babies under two months of age account for the majority of hospitalisation and fatal cases.
Boostrix has already been given FDA approval for use during pregnancy to safeguard the mother against illness, but not particularly to stop whooping cough in babies. The whooping cough vaccination was initially authorised in 2005 to protect those between the ages of 10 and 18 from the disease, and later for those who are 19 years of age and older.