Tuesday, March 24, 2009

What the trial nurse had to say about the chicken pox vaccine

I never got a call back yesterday after my frantic efforts to contact my clinical trial nurse on Friday in reference to my 10 year old's appointment today for his physical and vaccinations.

I called her this morning and apparently she never got my message. When I asked if it was ok for my son to get vaccinated, she misunderstood and asked if I meant that I wanted to get vaccinated.

I said "no! It's just that the new consent form had all that added stuff about not being around people with chicken pox or those who had been recently vaccinated and I just wanted to make sure I do the right thing. If he's not to get vaccinated, then I'll send someone else to take him to the doctor's office so I'm not exposed to kids with the pox, and I'll let them know not to give him the shot."

She said "let me check your file and I'll call you back".

Within 10 min. she had located the results of the lab work that Novartis had done on me, same as all the rest of the trial participants in light of the 2 deaths from viral infections related to chicken pox.

She said "Oh, you don't have to worry! You have a strong immunity. In order to be considered a positive test for antibodies sufficient enough to allow you to stay in the study, you must test at a level of 1.0. Your levels are 1.70. You are very immune, so don't worry about it. Go get your son vaccinated and don't be afraid of the doctor's office."

I breathed a sigh of relief in knowing that I could accompany my son and get all the dirt from the doctor first hand instead of trying to rely on John for any details. Whew.

Being the compulsive worrier that I am, though, on the way to the appointment it occurred to me that lab results are often misread or inaccurate....what if....

Nooooooooooo! I have to quit thinking like that! But I am a card carrying member of the WCSDDA. AKA Worst Case Scenario Day Dreamers' Association. You cannot possibly know or control what the future has in store, so why not imagine the worst case scenario and then be pleasantly surprised and relieved when you survive another day?* It makes living on the edge more attainable for those folks who don't have the finances to go sky diving or mountain climbing. For those of us who have mundane lives, the WCSDDA is a way to invigorate yourself and keep your pulse pounding.

*Not for the feint of heart or for that matter, not recommended for people who have no imagination.

1 comment:

  1. So I checked with the Novartis chick and she said it wouldn't be a bad idea to avoid patients with shingles at work. I'm gonna just do that just in case.


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