Back-to-School Immunizations

With guest blogger, Dr. Brandon Emery of Lexington Pediatric Practice, a Lexington Medical Center physician practice

This time of year makes us think of new backpacks, freshly sharpened pencils and stylish pairs of bright sneakers. But before you send your child back to school, be sure they’re up to date on important vaccinations.

Dr. Brandon Emery

Dr. Brandon Emery

Children ages 10 to 11 should receive a whooping cough (pertussis) booster through the Tdap vaccine. Whooping cough is bacterial infection with violent coughing fits marked by a “whoop” sound while gasping for breath. Children are usually vaccinated for whooping cough as young children. The vaccine provides excellent immunity but decreases over time. That makes older children, teenagers and adults more likely to contract whooping cough and spread it to others.

Around age 11, children should also receive a vaccine for meningitis. Meningitis is an infection of the protective membrane around the brain and spinal cord. While the disease is rare, it can be deadly. Symptoms of meningitis are a high fever, severe headaches, and neck stiffness along with altered mental status, sensitivity to light, and vomiting. Teenagers should receive a meningitis booster again between the ages of 16 and 18, before attending college. The disease is known to spread among individuals who live close to each other, such as in a college dorm.

circle of handsAdditionally, children who are 11 can receive a hepatitis A vaccine. Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease. Patients catch it when they come in contact with objects, food or drinks contaminated by an infected person.

Finally, parents of school-age children should also make sure that their children have had two rounds of the chicken pox vaccine or have immunity. Boys and girls during adolescence should receive an HPV vaccine to prevent several forms of cancer.

For more information about these vaccines, call your doctor or Lexington Pediatric Practice at (803) 359 – 8855. LexPediatricPractice.com

Wine on the River

The Lexington Medical Center Foundation’s Women of Hope will host the third annual “Wine on the River” at Stone River and the West Columbia Riverwalk on Saturday, August 23, 2014 from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Surrounded by the beautiful sights and sounds along the Congaree River, “Wine on the River” features wine tastings, cuisine from Midlands restaurants and musical entertainment from Jim LeBlanc.

Guests can sample a variety of red and white wines, craft beers and delicious foods from food and beverage sponsors including Travinia Italian Kitchen, Alodia’s Cucina Italiana, Bogart’s, Budweiser of Columbia, Café Strudel, Capital City Club, Conquest Brewery, Famously Frozen, Grapes and Gallery, Ms. B’s Southern Kitchen, Salsarita’s Fresh Cantina, Sam’s Fine Wine and Spirits and Whole Foods.

Here are some photos from last year’s event.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


In addition, attendees can learn how to join Women of Hope, a women’s giving circle that is part of the Lexington Medical Center Foundation. Established in 2011, Women of Hope identifies health issues in the Midlands and works to bring about positive change. 



Proceeds from “Wine on the River” will benefit the Lexington Medical Center Women and Children’s Fund, which provides clothing and basic supplies for newborns whose parents are in financial need, infant CPR kits for families of special care infants and education materials for new mothers.

Last year, more than 500 people attended “Wine on the River.” In the past two years, the event has raised more than $45,000. 

Tickets for Wine on the River are $30 in advance and $40 at the entrance. To purchase tickets, call (803) 791-2540 or go to LMCFoundation.com and click on the Eventbrite link on that page. Food, wine and some beers are included in the admission price. There will be a cash bar for additional types of beer and beverages.