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Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 91, Issue 6, pp 426–430 | Cite as

Health Diaries for Monitoring Events Following Immunization

  • Thomas R. FreemanEmail author
  • Moira Stewart
  • Richard Birtwhistle
  • Denise Cloutier Fisher
Article

Abstract

The present study set out to determine the validity of the information and the feasibility of using health diaries to monitor vaccine adverse events.

Mothers of children about to receive DPT vaccine were asked to keep a diary of their child’s health and their doctors were randomized into one of three groups: 1) a close follow-up (CFG); 2) a telephone follow-up (TFG); or 3) a mail follow-up group (MFG).

Diary return rates were good at 98.8%, 82.5%, and 86.2% for the CFG, TFG, and MFG groups respectively. Agreement between the parent and nurse on the existence of common symptoms was high, varying from 89.9% to 98.7%; redness and swelling was high at 78.5% and 96.2% respectively; and axillary temperatures was lower from 71.6% up.

This study found that health diaries were a valid and complete method for monitoring the most common types of vaccine-related illness, with the possible exception of body temperature.

Résumé

L’étude visait à déterminer la validité de l’information des carnets de santé et la valeur pratique de leur utilisation pour suivre les effets indésirables des vaccins.

Nous avons demandé aux mères d’enfants prêts à recevoir le vaccin DCT de tenir un carnet de santé pour leurs enfants. Les mères et leurs médecins ont été regroupés de façon aléatoire en trois groupes: 1) un groupe suivi en personne (GSP), 2) un groupe suivi par téléphone (GST) et 3) un groupe suivi par correspondance (GSC).

Le taux de retour des carnets a été bon: 98,8 %, 82,5 % et 86,2 % respectivement pour le GSP, le GST et le GSC. Mères et infirmières se sont entendues dans une proportion élevée quant à la présence des symptômes communs (de 89,9 % à 98,7 %), de rougeurs (78,5 %) et d’enflures (96,2 %), mais dans une moindre proportion (71,6 % et plus) en ce qui avait trait à la température axillaire.

L’étude démontre que les carnets de santé sont une méthode valide et complète pour suivre les types les plus communs de réactions aux vaccins, à l’exception, peut-être, de la température corporelle.

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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas R. Freeman
    • 1
    Email author
  • Moira Stewart
    • 2
  • Richard Birtwhistle
    • 3
  • Denise Cloutier Fisher
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Family MedicineThe University of Western OntarioCanada
  2. 2.Centre for Studies in Family MedicineThe University of Western OntarioCanada
  3. 3.Department of Family MedicineQueen’s UniversityCanada
  4. 4.College of Family Physicians of CanadaCanada

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