Dr. Debra Gambrell specializes in child-based biodynamic treatments. These gentle treatments are aimed at restoring the body’s natural ability to heal itself.
Dr. Gambrell’s medical career began in anesthesiology, with a special focus on pediatric anesthesia. Through personal observation, she noticed a certain group of children had different responses to receiving an anesthetic. This was true, even when their medical records were ‘clean.’
(A ‘clean’ medical record is a record without any identified allergies or medical incidents, such as past surgeries or illnesses.)
Determined to discover why some children have unpredictable responses to anesthesia, Dr. Gambrell has been researching the potential causes. What she discovered, was vaccines seemed to be one of the consistent variables between children who responded poorly to anesthesia. She shared some of her insights during the following Q&A:
Q: How did the responses between patients vary?
A: It was during intubation procedures (putting in an airway tube) that I really began to see a difference. With healthy children, you’ll see heart rate variability (a change in their heart rate).
Some children didn’t have the heart rate variability you’d expect – even when they had a clean medical record. So I started looking at all the different viabilities. These included food nuances, constipation, allergies, and home life.
What I found was that the only consistent variable many of the children with an unusual heart rate variability shared was they had received vaccines.
Q: What are some of the pros of vaccines?
A: The most obvious is protecting against a potentially deadly disease. When a child gets sick, even if they’re just a little under the weather, their immune system doesn’t operate at its full potential. In these instances, you’d ideally want to keep your child at home.
But for a lot of parents, this isn’t an option. They either aren’t aware of the symptoms they need to watch out for or they don’t have the childcare flexibility to keep their child home. For these parents, a vaccine helps protect their child when they can’t.
Q: What are some of the cons of vaccines?
A: One of the ‘cons’ of which parents should be aware is that vaccines help protect against specific strains of a virus. But as we’ve seen, viruses evolve. A vaccine will not protect against every strain that is out there. Additionally, different children respond differently. For example, some children can experience mood swings, lethargy or heightened food sensitivities.
Q: Is there anything you suggest to parents when they’re considering vaccines?
A: Vaccines aren’t my specialty. It’s really anesthesia. But, the thing about the field of anesthesiology is that as anesthesiologists, we’re always considering patients on a by-patient basis.
This means we take into account everything about the patient, right down to the day they’re receiving the anesthesia. That level of consideration is incredible for having improved the patient experience.
I’m a huge proponent of taking the same approach with vaccines. This means considering, which child? Which vaccine? Which day? It also means considering what they’re currently being exposed to? Do they have travel plans soon? Did they just get over an illness? All of these factors can play a major role in how the child responds.
One of the things we consider with anesthesia is family history. If the child has a parent or sibling that’s experienced an adverse reaction to any treatment, it’s worth taking a closer look before the same treatment is administered.
Do you have additional questions about the Pros and Cons of Vaccines?
Dr. Gambrell and our team on integrative medical doctors are always available to talk with you about your options and how to best protect your family.
Naturopathic health care with compassionate integrative doctors who understand your unique medical needs.