Thursday, May 22, 2008

Pre-Surgery Vaccine

I just got an email from Jenny, the patient care coordinator. It was about getting a pneumococcal vaccine. Here is the email.

"I wanted to let you know that the doctors reccomend [sic] the Pneumococcal vaccine for all patients having a cochlear implant surgery. If you want to have the vaccine I can have it ordered and ready for you on day of preop. Its [sic] a completely preventative measure. We have never had a patient develop problems but this vaccine is completely recommended."

So what are my thoughts at this point? Basically, "What?! ANOTHER thing I need to think about?" I've been fortunate in that I've been able to really avoid having to think about it, as I'm sure is ridiculously obvious in my previous posts.

I couldn't help but laugh. I mean, is this really something else? They randomly (or so it seems) realize they forgot to mention I may want to get a shot as a precaution. I said yes, because the insurance is paying for it all anyway, and I looked up the shot. She said it was entirely optional.

Medicine-Net provided me the information I wanted. The vaccine is a shot designed to prevent pneumonia infection (which some of you may have figured out like I did, due to the name).

I figure, why say no if I can say yes? It's not really a big deal. I dislike shots as much as the next person. I am also sometimes suspicious of doctors' intentions in "recommending" extra procedures, especially if I may not need them.

But in this case, I think everyone that cares for me would want me to get this. "Better safe than sorry." And I concur.

So I guess before I get a hole drilled into my head, I get the proverbial cherry to top it off! Eh, shots aren't that big of a deal. What confuses me though is I thought I had already gotten this vaccine.


Abbie said...

HI! I saw that you posted a blog link on Hearing Journey. I wanted to rush right over and welcome ya! My name is Abbie and I have a blog called the Chronicles of Bionic Woman. If you want you can go and check out my entire CI journey. Mind if I add your name to my long list of CI-borgs? :)

The reason why you need to get the pneumococcal vaccine is that it prevents bacterial meningitis which has been associated with cochlear implants. I know what you are saying, a pneumonia vaccine for meningitis? The reason why they use the pneumococcal vaccine is because it is the pneumococcal bacteria that causes it.

It is not an extra procedure because it is required by the FDA that prior to a CI surgery that you must get the vaccine. No body wants to see you get sick :) It is strictly routine and it is a good thing to have. All college students before they move into a dorm require the same shot. Its no biggie :)

Ian said...

huh... And tasha IS a dorm college student... Maybe you DID already get it?

*Tasha* said...

I emailed the patient care coordinator about this aspect, just now, so we'll see what she says. I suspect she'll say to do it again anyway, but I mentioned in the email being overdosed or over-vaccinated if I'm already immune to this, so hopefully she gives it some real thought and is able to figure out if it's an issue to get the shot AGAIN or if it's at all necessary.

They have already ordered the vaccine though and it arrives on the 11th, so.... :?