14 children in California receive a double dose of COVID-19

On Saturday, Denise Iserloth took her two sons, aged 8 and 11, to be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus.

A few hours later, the older boy lost his balance and fell twice. Both boys complained of abdominal pain and nausea.

Iserloth soon found out why.

The clinic, at Sutter Health in Antioch, had given its boys twice the dose of Pfizer-BioNTech that children their age should receive.

Twelve other children also received a double dose.

Medical professionals have assured Iserloth that the short-term effects should disappear within a few days and that the long-term risks are likely to be minimal.

But it does little to comfort a mother who already had deep reservations about vaccinating her children.

“I was embarrassed when I got the call that this was happening,” Iserloth said. “I’ve been crying every day. I can’t eat and I can’t sleep.”

Vaccination of children ages 5 to 11 began in California this month after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended vaccinations for this age group.

Iserloth, 38, of Oakley, was concerned about side effects and a family history of allergic reactions, but wanted to make sure her sons could go to school as state-wide vaccination regulations gradually take effect.

He also wanted them to be fully vaccinated for future family trips.

“I tried to be proactive even though I wasn’t ready to vaccinate them,” Iserloth said. “Because I know we failed them in distance learning, and that’s why I quietly got them vaccinated. I decided to vaccinate them both at the same clinic at the same time. Then the clinic failed miserably. “

Dr. Jimmy Hu, a pediatrician at Sutter Health and chairman of the COVID-19 vaccine team, said in a statement that 14 children “received the vaccines with the wrong amount of diluent.”

Children aged 5 to 11 years receive a lower dose than the older age groups, so a diluent is added to the injections they receive as part of a double treatment.

According to Sutter Health, instead of 10 micrograms of messenger RNA, 14 children received about 20 micrograms.

“As soon as we found out about this, we contacted the parents and advised them of the CDC’s guidance in this situation,” Hu said in a statement. “Patient safety is our top priority, and we immediately reviewed our processes to make sure this didn’t happen again.”

Dr. Edward Jones-Lopez, a USC infectious disease specialist at Keck Medical, said Sutter Health’s mistake was not ideal, but neither was it a serious concern.

However, it may give some the misconception that vaccines are not safe for children when the risks of not getting vaccinated are much more serious, he said.

“Usually they are very safe, and the added dose, in this case a mistake, if it causes problems, it’s because of the vaccine injection,” he said. “Like all vaccines we give in childhood, they can cause fever, flu and other side effects.”

Iserloth said Sutter Health has not specified how the mistake was made or what his family can expect next.

“Every answer every pediatrician has told me is that they expect my children to be okay, but there are no guarantees,” Iserloth said. “I have this huge motherhood guilt.”

By Tuesday night, her children were feeling a little better, even though she had to pick up her 11-year-old son early in school when she felt sick.

She is sure of one thing: her children will not receive a second dose of the vaccine until her questions have been answered, she said.

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