rotavirus, rota, rotavaccine, vaccine, mother

Mama Kemi is visited by a longtime friend who recently moved to Lagos: Mary and Mama Kemi were University mates, best of friends before they got separated by marriage.


As they were talking, Mama Kemi asked a question ” What of Tobe, why did you not bring him along? ” this simple question changed what started as a happy reunion to a very sad but empathetic story.


Mary paused for few minutes, her mood changed as she frantically tried to search for answers to a simple question she was just asked – her faced was covered with sober reflection – the Mary Kay she wore could not hide it: it became a Jamb question.


She took courage, placed her pam across her mouth for few seconds, as tears gradually traced their path on her cheeks like tyre imprints on a newly tarred road, and started to narrate her story.


It’s a long story, Lady T – calling mama Kemi by the nickname she was known as in her University days. What started as a play went on to become a tragedy for me and my husband. When Tobe was around 6 months old – just when he started teething – he developed a mild fever – was acting restless – stooling, all at the same time, everything was happening just too fast for us.


We thought it was something not serious, so decided to get him medications from the pharmacy without even telling the doctor our complaints; while, requesting for them to give use Paracetamol and Flagyl syrup.


We administered these medications for two days, but his condition became severe; we decided to take him to the hospital. The Pediatrician we met requested some tests – his temperature was checked ­– his stool was taken to the lab.


It was discovered he contracted Rotavirus infection: started mild but had progressed to a life and death situation. My son became so weak and was gradually losing consciousness. I clinched to my husband and held onto him like pegs to wet clothes on a line. I prayed to God that if I had offended him in any way he should please forgive me and save my son.


However, when the doctor said Rotavirus, it struck me, I saw that on his immunization card at weeks 6 and 10 respectively but ignored it as I was not told about it, I taught it wasn’t important. Lady T! She exclaimed – that is a mistake I will live the rest of my life to regret – I was too ignorant – I paid dearly for it, but not in cash, but with the life of my son.

Mama Kemi was befuddled by the story she just heard and drew closer to comfort her: petting her on the back.


For enquiry on how to get your child vaccinated against Rotavirus infection contact Inocul8 on 08160962414.

Dr. Emmanuel Egbroko


Dr. Emmanuel Egbroko is a Clinician with over 10 years experience in the infectious disease space. He specializes in the field of infectious diseases, vaccinology, and immunology. He leads the vaccine unit at the Inocul8 Medvacc Family Immunization Clinic, Lagos State, Nigeria.

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