The Impact of the Rotavirus Vaccine

Rotavirus vaccine prevented diarrhea hospitalizations for children

(RxWiki News) The rotavirus vaccine helped keep hundreds of thousands of children out of the hospital, according to estimates from a new study.

After routine rotavirus vaccination was introduced in the United States in 2006, more than 380,000 children less than 5 years old avoided going to the hospital, this study found.

Rotavirus can cause diarrhea, fever, vomiting and stomach pain in children. Some children who are infected need to be hospitalized due to dehydration.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), two rotavirus vaccines are currently used for infants in the US: RotaTeq and Rotarix. Both vaccines are given orally when children are a few months old.

"Our findings confirm the sustained impact and effectiveness of the rotavirus vaccine program," said study author Dr. Eyal Leshem, formerly of the CDC and currently with the Sackler Faculty of Medicine, in a press release. "Increasing vaccine coverage likely resulted in the larger declines of rotavirus hospitalizations observed in the later years studied."

This study looked at health data from hospitals in 26 states.

Talk to your health care provider about which vaccines are right for your child.

This study was published in the Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society.

Information on study funding sources and potential conflicts of interest was not available at the time of publication.