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Immunisation

Immunisation is the cornerstone of preventive medicine. Basic diseases (diphtheria, tetanus, polio, whooping cough, measles, mumps, rubella) should be covered. Children should be immunised according to the NHMRC recommendation.

All adults should receive an adult diphtheria and tetanus (ADT) booster each 10 years.

All women of child-bearing years should have their rubella antibody status reviewed.

Table I1

Current recommended schedule (www.immunise.health.gov.au)

Other recommendations

  • Influenza: annually for those with chronic debilitating diseases, persons >65, health care personnel and the immunosuppressed.

  • Hepatitis B: for those at risk through work or lifestyle; infants born of HBsAg +ve mothers.

  • Q fever: those at risk, esp. abattoir workers.

  • Tuberculosis (BCG vaccine): infants at risk (e.g. Indochinese babies exposed to TB, health workers who are Mantoux negative).

  • Pneumococcal vaccine: splenectomised persons >2 yrs, Hodgkin's lymphoma, those at high risk of pneumococcal infections.

  • Meningococcal c vaccine: children and adolescents 15–19 yrs; B strain vaccine is available.

Impetigo

  • If mild and limited: antiseptic cleansing and removal of crusts bd with an antibacterial soap or chlorhexidine or povidone-iodine. Apply mupirocin (Bactroban) tds for 7–10 d

  • Daily bath with Oilatum Plus bath oil for 2 wks is helpful

  • If extensive: oral di(flu)cloxacillin or cephalaxin or erythromycin for 10 d (if penicillin sensitive)

  • Exclude from childcare/school settings until fully healed

Incontinence of urine

  • Search for a cause:

    • D—delirium, drugs (e.g. antihypertensives)

    • I—infection of urinary tract

    • A—atrophic urethritis

    • P—psychological

    • E—endocrine (e.g. hypercalcaemia); environmental: unfamiliar surrounds

    • R—restricted mobility

    • S—stool impaction, sphincter damage or weakness

  • Avoid various drugs (e.g. diuretics, psychotropics, alcohol)

  • Weight reduction if obese

In women:

  • perform urodynamics to assess stress incontinence

  • bladder retraining (instruct patient to delay micturition for 10–15 mins on impulse to void) and pelvic floor exercises (mainstay of treatment)

  • physiotherapist referral

  • consider a trial of anticholinergic drugs if bladder atony instability or voiding dysfunction (e.g. solifenacin 5–10 mg daily, propantheline 15 mg (o) bd or tds, tolterodine 2 mg (o) bd)

  • consider surgery for ...

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