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Varicella Vaccine Slashes Cases of Chickenpox

Posted: October 4th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Passport Health Sarasota-Bradenton Announcements | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on Varicella Vaccine Slashes Cases of Chickenpox

Chickenpox cases in the United Statessank almost 80% between 2000 and 2010 in 31 states, with the help of Merck’s ($MRK) varicella vaccine. The CDC published the findings Aug. 17 in the organization’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The findings show a two-dose round of the vaccine–recommended for children in 2006–caused cases of chickenpox to decline 70% over the course of four years.

Merck has the chickenpox vaccine market cornered in theU.S.There are two chickenpox vaccines licensed in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, both made by Merck: Varivax and ProQuad. ProQuad is a combination measles, mumps, rubella and varicella vaccine that the company plans to roll out in theU.S.in October. Varivax, however, is already on the market. In 2011, total sales for the vaccine hit $902 million, according to data from EvaluatePharma. For ProQuad, worldwide sales were at $70 million last year.

CDC figures show the biggest drop in chickenpox cases occurred in children ages 5 to 9. The varicella vaccine made it into the rotation of childhood shots in 1996 and a second dose was recommended in 2006. That second dose helped cut chickenpox incidence 72% from 2006 to 2010.

Chickenpox, an uncomfortable and sometimes serious disease, causes a blister-like rash, itching, tiredness and fever. Before a vaccine entered the picture, about 4 million people in the U.S.came down with the disease each year.

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Cickenpox Outbreak in Glades County Immigration Detention Center

Posted: July 5th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Travel Health Alerts, Travel Vaccines Updates | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on Cickenpox Outbreak in Glades County Immigration Detention Center

On Tuesday, July 3rd it was reported that there was an outbreak of Chickenpox at the Glades County Detention Center in South/Central Florida.  Authorities are watching the outbreak closely as Chickenpox is a very contagious disease that can be spread through physical contact or through the air.

Adults can get chickenpox as well. Taken from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Checkenpox_Adult_back.jpg

We usually associate Chickenpox with childhood but it often happens that adults who were not vaccinated or never had Chickenpox get infected.

Right now the authorities at Glade County Detention Center are working to separate those who have had Chickenpox before and those who have not.  Visitations are cancelled for now.  Since Chickenpox takes 10-21 days to develop those who have never had it before will be placed under observation for the next few weeks.

Chickenpox is caused by the Varicella virus.  The vaccine is called Varivax and it is administered to children in two doses.  One when the child is 12 to 15 months old, and another when he/she is 4-6 years old.  Vaccination is credited with reducing the incidence of the disease by up to 70-90% with a corresponding drop in related hospital admissions and death.  The Vaccine became widespread in the United States in 1995.

Where vaccines are available they are considered the best preventative health measure against disease.