Thursday, March 22, 2012

Tetanus shot

When I was in the hospital after I had BlueEyes I got a tetanus shot. It didn’t make a lot of sense to me why I got it, but I was a bit too overwhelmed with everything to really think about it and/or decline it.  Talking about baby sleep on twitter this morning made me realize that they probably give you a tetanus shot, because they already know something that you don’t, which is that for the next couple of months (or years?) you will be so sleep deprived that you will very likely do clumsy, self-destructive things that would otherwise require you to get a tetanus shot.

At least I did, this is the score so far:
  •  When I did surgeries on my rats the other week, I one stabbed myself with a syringe (filled with saline and an antibiotic) that had already been in a rat.
  •  During those same surgeries, I stabbed myself with the suture needle twice (again, that needle had been in a rat before I put it in my finger).
  • A couple weeks ago, someone held the door of our University open for me, so I ran, twisted my ankle on the uneven pavement, fell on the floor and scraped my knee (and embarrassed myself).  Good thing my laptop and breast pump that I was carrying were still in one piece.
  •  This morning, when I was trying to cut a rat brain in two pieces, I wondered why the razor blade didn’t go through the brain as smoothly as it normally would, only to find out I had the razor blade upside down and instead of cutting the brain I was cutting my finger.
The only thing I don’t understand is why the hospital doesn’t administer a tetanus shot to the fathers of newborn babies, since those will be (almost) equally sleep deprived. The other day Dr. BrownEyes was in the kitchen preparing dinner and dropped a large kitchen knife only inches from his foot….
So far, no animals or babies were harmed.

Edit: what my foggy postpartum brain forgot, but @tollkuhn kindly mentioned on twitter is that you're given the Tdap vaccine (so not just tetanus) mostly to protect your baby from whooping cough. So that's important not to decline! 

1 comment:

  1. I am a paranoid new dad. I am trying acquire a secret stash of TDaP to jab people with before they enter my house. After my coworkers son was born I emailed my group and reminded them of the horrors of pertussis in infants and that the TDaP was only $45 at University Health Services ;)

    FWIW, my chum Ottar Bjornstead wrote a nice bit in PNAS a couple of years ago showing that teenagers/young adults are the primary vector for pertussis because their immunity has lapsed and they've not been reboosted...