The overwhelming majority of health professionals, medical researchers and professional medical organizations recommend immunization to protect yourself and those around you. Vaccines are our best prevention against infectious diseases. Remember the following:
- Vaccinations prevent you or your child from getting diseases for which there are often no medical treatments. These illnesses can result in serious complications and even death.
- A small number of people, such as those with an impaired immune system, may not be able to get vaccinations or may not develop immunity even after having been vaccinated. Their only protection against certain diseases is for others to get vaccinated so the illnesses are less common.
- Getting immunized costs less than getting treated for the diseases that the shots protect you from.
- If exposure to a disease occurs in a community, there is little to no risk of an epidemic if people have been immunized.
The dramatic and long-term decrease of infectious diseases in the United States is primarily a result of widespread immunizations throughout the U.S. population. Even though some diseases, such as polio, rarely affect people in the U.S., all of the recommended childhood vaccines and booster shots are still needed. Travelers can unknowingly bring these diseases from other countries, and without immunizations they could quickly spread throughout the population, causing epidemics.
A note on immunization safety
Some people question the safety of immunizations for children. Although minor discomfort sometimes follows vaccine injection, research does not support claims that immunizations put a child at any significant risk for harmful side effects. You can view the CDC's vaccine information statements here.
The risk of a serious complication from a disease is far greater than the risk from the vaccine. For example, one child in a group of 20 children may die from diphtheria disease. But only one child in a group of 14,000 children may have convulsions or shock after getting the DTaP vaccine. And that child would recover fully.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration carefully evaluates all vaccines for safety, and they, the CDC, the vaccine maker and several other agencies watch for any reports of rare or unexpected reactions to vaccines.
Talk to your primary care provider about immunizations for you and your family. If you need help finding a primary care provider, call 804-359-WELL(9355) or visit www.bonsecours.com.
Sources: CDC on Childhood Vaccine Importance, CDC on Vaccine Misconceptions, CDC on General Immunization Recommendations
Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease (HFM)
Hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFM) is an extremely common childhood viral infection, most often caused by a strain of the coxsackie virus (A16). It is an extremely contagious infection, and is most common in children under 10 years of age, although infection in older children, teens and adults can occur.
The hallmark of HFM is painful mouth ulcers as well as small, discrete blisters (vesicles) on the palms and soles. Malaise and marked decrease in appetite are also commonly associated with HFM, while less common findings include abdominal pain, diarrhea and a rash at the buttocks. This rash can occasionally be painful or itchy, and resolves spontaneously in about 10 days. The mouth ulcers can vary in location and presentation, appearing as either small red pimples (papules) or blisters (vesicles) and involve the tongue, back of throat, gums, inside of cheeks and, on occasion, the lips. These mouth lesions can persist for up to one week.
HFM is an extremely common infection during the spring and summer months and typically is more prevalent during these seasons than strep throat. Herpangina is another viral infection involving painful throat sores this time of year, but with herpangina there is no associated rash.
Typically a fever, irritability, poor feeding and drooling in an infant or toddler may be assumed to be teething related by parents. Upon closer inspection of the mouth and throat, painful ulcers are noted in the area around the tonsils.
The treatment for HFM and herpangina is supportive, as antibiotics will not treat these viral infections. Cool, soft foods and fluids along with pain medications (Tylenol, Motrin, Advil) will help your child as their body fights the infection.
Don't forget the TLC, your little one will need it!
By Dr. Mark Garabedian, Pediatrician
9113 Dickey Drive
Mechanicsville, VA 23116
Ready for Back to School?
Schedule your kids' physicals with Bon Secours today and avoid the last minute rush!
While we're still enjoying the long days of summer, your children and teens are preparing to go back to school and may be gearing up for fall sports. The first step is often to fill out a sports phsical form. The pre-participation physical examination is a chance to:
- identify previous musculoskeletal injuries
- identify barriers that can interfere with top performance (such as exercise-induced asthma)
- maximize safe participation
- identify medical issues that can cause life-threatening problems during sports participation
- develop treatment plans if necessary
All Bon Secors Medical Group primary care and sports medicine practices are offering back-to-school physicals. Call 804-359-WELL (9355) or visit richmond.bonsecours.com today.
|Beginner Strength Workout | Strength Training Routine | Fit How To|
Harold Vincent Lawson, Jr., MD
Bon Secours West End Internal Medicine
7001 Forest Avenue, Suite 2500
Richmond, VA 23230
Bon Secours is delighted to announce that Dr. Lawson will be joining the internal medicine team on August 31st.
Dr. Lawson attended Elizabeth City State University for his undergraduate degree. He received his medical degree from Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine and completed his internal medicine and pediatric residency from Georgetown University Hospital. In addition, Dr. Lawson is fluent in Spanish.
Dr. Lawson is board certified in internal medicine and board eligible in pediatrics.
What do you enjoy most about being a primary care provider?
"I enjoy the ability to connect with patients in a meaningful way. A primary internist has the ability to work with patients in many facets of their lives and to influence nutrition, counsel about exercise and address emotional well-being in addition to helping with any other medical concerns. This is a special connection that primary care physicians are privileged to be a part of."
Why did you choose Bon Secours Health System?
"I found the atmosphere at Bon Secours facilities to be pleasant, accepting and dedicated to the goal of compassionate patient care. These are attributes that I value in a workplace. Also, the physicians that I have met have been amazing and seem genuinely happy in their practices."
What do you enjoy outside of your work?
"I enjoy spending time with my family and exploring new places."
Grilled Margherita Sandwich
▪1 Ciabatta bun each
▪ 1-1/2 oz sliced Mozzarella
▪ 3 fresh basil leaves each
▪ 3 oz beefsteak tomatoes
▪ 1 tsp Balsamic vinaigrette
▪ 3/4 oz sliced Monterey Jack
▪ 1 tsp olive oil
▪ 1 pinch kosher salt and 1 pinch ground black pepper
Slice bread in half horizontally, slice tomato into 1-1/2 oz slices
On bottom half of bread, place 2 slices of mozzarella, 3 basil leaves, 2 slices of tomato, a pinch of salt and pepper, and 1 tsp of vinaigrette. Top with 1 slice of jack cheese and other half of bread.
Lightly brush oil onto both sides of sandwich and cook on medium hot flat top or skillet. Cook both sides, pressing down, until bread is toasted and cheese melted, or use Panini press.
Check out these fun upcoming events!
Redskins Training Camp
July 24 - Monday, August 11
Bon Secours Washington Redskins Training Center
2401 West Leigh St Richmond, VA 23220
Free admission. Watch the Redskins train or take part in special events, giveaways, games, interactive tents, and more!
PJ Jamboree: Ladies' Night Out
Friday, August 8 from 6-10pm
Salisbury Country Club
13620 Salisbury Road
Midlothian, VA 23113
Enjoy music, photo booth, chair massages and a silent auction. Enter to win the best PJ contest. All proceeds go toward benefitting cancer patients.
CFMD Race'n'Roll 5K Run/Walk
Saturday, August 9
Our Lady of Lourdes Church
8200 Woodman Road
Henric, VA 23228
Join this inaugural race to benefit the Colorado Fund for Muscular Dystrophy. The Race 'N' Roll 5K is a 3.1-mile run through the charming, tree-covered neighborhoods of Henrico County.
Wednesday, August 13, 4pm-7pm
Robinson Theater Community Arts Center
2903 Q Street
Richmond, VA 23223
Come join central Virginia's first mobile learning kitchen. Children and families can learn to cook healthy dishes together.
Learn more here
Anthem Moonlight Ride
Saturday, August 16
Sports Backers Stadium
100 Avenue of Champions
Richmond, VA 23230
Take in the sights and sounds of RVA by bike... under a full moon... with 3,500 other rides decked out in crazy lights and costumes.
Race for the Cause 5K
Saturday, August 16
White Bank Park
400 White Bank Road
Colonial Heights, VA 23834
Participants of all levels are encouraged to come out and enjoy the 5K run. All proceeds go toward cancer education, detection and treatment.
Introduction to Pilates and the Reformer
Saturday, August 23
Core Pilates of Richmond
1123 N Gaskins Rd
Richmond, VA 23238
This free workshop will explain and guide you through the Pilates exercises that will put the feeling of stability and mobility in your body.
Sign up now to secure your spot!
Patrick Henry Half Marathon
Saturday, August 23
202 Henry Street
Ashland, VA 23005
This half marathon starts and finishes on the beautiful Randolph-Macon campus, featuring 13.1 miles of rolling countryside and scenic historic districts.
Glow Swim- Open H2O Race Series
Saturday, August 23
4800 Welby Turn
Midlothian, VA 23113
Swimmers will have a glow-in-the-dark number as well as fluorescent swim cap under which they will put a glow stick. Each kayak, SUP, buoy, safety boat, finish chute and arch will be lit up.
Virginia Home for Boys & Girls Youth Triathlon
Saturday. August 23
Virginia Home for Boys&Girls
8716 West Broat Street
Richmond, VA 23294
The race is open to ages 5-14 years, and features a short pool swim, closed-loop bike course, and a run on level playing fields. 100% of the proceeds from this event will benefit the children at VHBG.