Infant Sleep After Immunization: A Randomized Controlled Trial of Prophylactic Acetaminophen, a newly-published article written by FHCN faculty members, Linda Franck, RN, PhD, FRCPCH, FAAN, Caryl Gay, PhD, Kathryn Lee, RN, CBSM, PhD, FAAN, & Mary Lynch, RN, MS, MPH, CPNP, FAAN, has been highlighted by Pediatrics and the American Academy of Pediatrics.
"Franck et al. look at sleep duration following vaccination in infants with or without the administration of acetaminophen. The results are fascinating and don’t necessarily show what you might expect. I’ll tell you now that acetaminophen does not significantly influence sleep duration post-vaccines, but the time of day when vaccines are given may be playing a role (or at least has an association) with the duration of sleep post vaccination. You won’t fall asleep reading this one, and my guess is, you’ll want to share the results with families of infants you vaccinate so they know what to expect in terms of post-vaccine sleep.
From the American Academy of Pediatrics:
"There are conflicting recommendations about whether parents should give their infants acetaminophen prior to and after receiving immunizations to ease discomfort or help infants sleep after vaccination. Sleep is important to facilitate a healthy immune response and increased antibody production. The study, “Infant Sleep Following Immunization: A Randomized Controlled Trial of Prophylactic Acetaminophen,” appearing in the December 2011 Pediatrics (published online Nov. 28), examined two areas that indicate vaccine response: increased sleep duration and increased body temperature. Study authors associated increases in both these areas with increased antibody response. They found that sleep duration in the first 24 hours after immunization increased for all infants, particularly if the immunizations were administered after 1:30 p.m. Most infants also had the expected increase in body temperature. Acetaminophen use was associated with smaller increases in sleep duration, but not when controlling for other factors. The authors conclude that if further research finds a relationship between time of day for vaccine administration, increased sleep duration and elevated body temperature (indicating antibody response), then afternoon immunizations should be recommended to facilitate increased sleep after immunization, regardless of whether or not acetaminophen is used."