Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Good news for public health

A new vaccine for rotavirus, which causes severe diarrhea and dehydration in infants, has been recommended by the CDC. Although rotavirus is not a major problem in the United States, it kills an estimated 600,000 children a year in developing countries. A rotavirus vaccine manufactured by Wyeth in 1998 was pulled off the shelves because it was linked to an increased risk of intussusception, a flipping of the intestines that requires corrective surgery. The new vaccine, made by Merck, has no serious side effects.

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