Another Lancet embarrassment: Vaccine-scare doctor faked data

posted at 8:40 am on February 9, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

For more than ten years, debate has raged over a possible link between the MMR vaccine shot and autism in children.  The routine injection creates immunities for children against mumps, measles, and rubella or German measles, but some parents have refused to give their children the vaccine after a British study strongly suggested that thimerosol, a preservative component, caused brain damage and autism.  Now the Times of London reports that the author of the study, published by the British medical journal Lancet, faked the data in order to support his conclusions:

THE doctor who sparked the scare over the safety of the MMR vaccine for children changed and misreported results in his research, creating the appearance of a possible link with autism, a Sunday Times investigation has found.

Confidential medical documents and interviews with witnesses have established that Andrew Wakefield manipulated patients’ data, which triggered fears that the MMR triple vaccine to protect against measles, mumps and rubella was linked to the condition.

The research was published in February 1998 in an article in The Lancet medical journal. It claimed that the families of eight out of 12 children attending a routine clinic at the hospital had blamed MMR for their autism, and said that problems came on within days of the jab. The team also claimed to have discovered a new inflammatory bowel disease underlying the children’s conditions.

However, our investigation, confirmed by evidence presented to the General Medical Council (GMC), reveals that: In most of the 12 cases, the children’s ailments as described in The Lancet were different from their hospital and GP records. Although the research paper claimed that problems came on within days of the jab, in only one case did medical records suggest this was true, and in many of the cases medical concerns had been raised before the children were vaccinated. Hospital pathologists, looking for inflammatory bowel disease, reported in the majority of cases that the gut was normal. This was then reviewed and the Lancet paper showed them as abnormal.

Many parents may not have realized the anecdotal nature of the paper.  Wakefield used an incredibly small sample, from only one clinic, did no other studies, and yet reached conclusions that apparently satisfied the Lancet well enough to publish the paper.  As a result, British vaccination rates plunged from 98% to under 80%.  Measles made a comeback, and two children have died of the disease in the intervening decade since Wakefield and Lancet published the fraudulent study.

Normally, science demands replicability in such studies, or at least a larger sample size.  Since 1998, other scientists have wasted time trying to duplicate Wakefield’s results, to no avail:

No researchers have been able to replicate the results produced by Wakefield’s team in the Lancet study.

Some used statistics to see if autism took off in 1988, when MMR was introduced. It did not. Others used virology to see if MMR caused bowel disease, a core suggestion in the paper. It did not. Yet more replicated the exact Wakefield tests. They showed nothing like what he said. …

“This study created a sensation among the public that was impossible to counter, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary,” says Professor Gary Freed, director of the child health research unit at the University of Michigan, who has watched the scare take off in America.

“Overwhelming biologic and epidemiologic evidence has demonstrated conclusively that there is no association between the MMR vaccine and autism, and yet this thing goes on.”

Why does it go on and on?  It strikes at the heart of parents everywhere, who just want to protect their children from harm.  Injecting anything into the bodies of our children takes an act of faith in the science and the doctors who provide the vaccination or medication.  Any hint that safety could be compromised will drive parents away from vaccination, and as we have seen, it doesn’t take much more than a suggestion to succeed in scaring parents away.  Study after study showing no connection between vaccinations and autism have had little effect in alleviating the fright.

The Lancet just took another high-profile hit over its study estimating Iraqi civilian deaths during the war, in which its author refused to cooperate with his peers and reveal his methodology after the findings were discredited by later research.  This time, they have the deaths of two children on their heads and the unnecessary revival of deadly diseases, thanks to the fraud they perpetrated on the Western world.  Maybe someone should put the Lancet out of our misery.


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This particular study dealt with a supposed correlation between MMR and autism, not with thimerosol. That was a separate issue. The MMR shot never had thimerosol in it.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 11:41 AM

Yeah, I shouldn’t have said the MMR shot. I actually think it was the flu shot that I read that about, but I probably just lost all credibility.

Regardless, I battle with finding the mercury-free flu shots every year. I am getting a little less stressed over it as the years go on, but when my first child had to get the flu shot and all this talk was going on about autism, oy! It’s tough on a new parent!

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 11:44 AM

I am getting a little less stressed over it as the years go on, but when my first child had to get the flu shot and all this talk was going on about autism, oy! It’s tough on a new parent!

I worry about my daughter, but not about immunizations. They’re safe.

You have a lot more to worry about if you’re planning on placing your children in public schools, than you ever will about immunizations.

Just ask our President. To him, our public schools are full of mercury, asbestos and alar, which is why his little darlings are going to private school.

But they’re OK for your kids. Really, they are.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 11:50 AM

Thanks for publishing this, Ed. I’m forwarding this to my daughter who works with kids with autism and she has mentioned this before.

cjs1943 on February 9, 2009 at 11:54 AM

We vaccinate our kids WAY too much, and it’s all about money.

By not vaccinating, you spend more money in treatments for diseases that could have been prevented by vaccination. Yeah, those evil corporations just want your money. All they want to do is make a profit, we should shut them down!

1) Autism rates have been climbing dramatically over the past 10-15 years. Nobody knows why.

Probably because many autistic kids slipped through the cracks back in the day. As practitioners become more familiar with the signs and behaviors, of course more will be diagnosed with autism.

Why isn’t anyone claming vaccinations cause ADD and ADHD? This is another behaviorial disorder that has seen more and more cases recently. I believe its rife with abuse as GPs are handing parents drugs like ritalin instead of having mental health professionals evaluate these kids.

My brother and I were both evaluated when we were young by two phyciatrists before my brother was diagnosed as ADHD. He was on ritalin for a few years but hasn’t taken the drug since middle school.

2) Regardless if the thimerosal causes autism or not, I don’t think anyone would deny that thimerosal is NOT a GOOD thing to pump into a child’s body. From what I’ve read in the past, the amount of Mercury in the MMR shot is significant, especially for a child, and rushes straight to the brain after injection.

How do you explain that the amount of thimerosal has dramatically gone down in vaccinations yet the number of autism cases have gone up? Even if you don’t trust the government agencies to tell you doses are safe, the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Medical Association, and the American College of Medical Toxicology all reject the idea that thimerosol causes autism and doses used in vaccinations are safe.

Hey, they’re only physicians, what the hell do they know?

What are we supposed to use to preserve vaccinations? If we can’t find an alternative, vaccines are going to be more expensive, making it much more difficult for the less advantaged to get proper vaccinations.

I have a serious problem with this because all it does is manufacture fear. We’re putting children at much greater risks by not vaccinating them. This deamonizing of medical professionals and the medical profession will cause more damage in the long term.

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 11:54 AM

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 11:54 AM

What he said.

RightOFLeft on February 9, 2009 at 12:05 PM

Also, regarding the lady the won the settlement, her daughter had a mitochondrial disorder-a mutation in her mitochondrial DNA. I believe she had MERRF syndrome (myoclonic episodic ragged red fiber), a epileptic disorder. So while it’s possible the vaccination aggravated her condition, it cannot be shown that it caused it. She may have appeared healthy befoe the shots, but it was only a matter of time before symptoms presented.

As for autism, symptoms often present around the same time as MMR shots are give–between 12-24 months. This is when speech and social skills are developing-specialized areas in the brain. These areas are already formed in utero and then addtional connections are refined during development after birth. I think autism symptoms correlating with vaccines is a coincidence and parents want to blame somebody for their child’s illness. The autism is already in place before birth and becomes unmasked later in the child’s development. There’s no reason for a healthy child not to be vaccinated. If the kid has a history of immune or developmental problems, then of course alternatives should be considered. The benefits vastly outweigh the risks.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 12:07 PM

Zero studies as to whethr or not this is overloading or harmful to a CHILD. I think it is. I think you are a sheep if you sign on to the “just do it” mentality when it comes to your children and vaccinations.

Sorry if this has already been addressed, but I am SO tired of hearing this.

I originally posted this at Ace’s place:

“It has been mentioned that infants are getting “too many too early”, as a possible reason for autism, and indeed, many other problems the lawyers can dream up.

Well, a study has shown that children in the past while receiving fewer shots, were getting many more antigens per innoculation. Where a child got around 200 proteins in the old polio vaccine alone, throughout the course of the entire immunization schedule now, the child will get only about 130.

In addition, that same study done by Paul Offit in the journal Pediatrics; January 2002, showed the infant immune system is capable of dealing with ‘about 10 000 vaccines at any one time’.”

Your “overloading” hypothesis is garbage.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:09 PM

We vaccinate our kids WAY too much, and it’s all about money.

Oh for God’s sake use your head for a minute.

Why would a greedy doctor innoculate all his patients when he could just skip the shots and treat all the previously preventable diseases? If pediatricians didn’t vaccinate, they would be swamped with patients.

What makes more money, shots or treating really sick kids?

Sheeesh!

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:14 PM

Anna
Have you read “Look Me in the Eye” by John Elder Robison?
It’s a must read for Aspies.
http://www.johnrobison.com

annoyinglittletwerp on February 9, 2009 at 11:16 AM

Definately will look into it. Thank you.

Anna on February 9, 2009 at 12:18 PM

How do you explain that the amount of thimerosal has dramatically gone down in vaccinations yet the number of autism cases have gone up?

Exactly why I’ve never completely bought the hysteria that thimerosal causes autism. Doesn’t change the fact that you are pumping mercury into your child, however. Even taking autism out of the equation, it still doesn’t feel right.

all reject the idea that thimerosal causes autism and doses used in vaccinations are safe.

I understand this. And I’ve never had a doctor tell me anything but that he/she thinks that thimerosal is safe, and they always site the studies. That’s fine and it gives a parent a little bit of comfort. However, the medical community has been wrong before, no?

If we can’t find an alternative, vaccines are going to be more expensive, making it much more difficult for the less advantaged to get proper vaccinations.

Interestingly, the ONLY place I am able to find the thimerosal-free flu shots every year is the walk-in clinic that is meant for lower income families or families without health insurance. It’s never been available at our pediatrician’s office. Why? Cause the mercury-free costs a little more for the office. Well, give me the choice and I’ll pay a little more for the mercury free.

I have a serious problem with this because all it does is manufacture fear. We’re putting children at much greater risks by not vaccinating them. This deamonizing of medical professionals and the medical profession will cause more damage in the long term.

Noone is “demonizing” anyone, or at least I’m not. As I said earlier, my kids have never missed a vaccination and never will. And I trust our physicians to tell us what their experience and knowledge tells them to be true. However, a parent still has the freedom to exercise judgement. It’s good for a parent to research and know what is being put in their child’s body, yes? Or do you think that we should blindly accept it as all good just because they are the physicians?

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:23 PM

jjjen,

You are wrong about the Danish study or maybe you only read part of it. It dealt with thimerosol vaccines and not specifically MMR. And it showed that while the incidence of autism increased after thimerosol vaccines were introduced, it DID NOT decrease after it was removed. So no correlation and definitely no causation.

Who knows what has caused the increase in autism? It could be due to an increase in diagnosis, environmental factors, or an increase in multiple births due to fertility treatments. But it has never been proven to be because of MMR or thimerosol.

I hope Dr. Wakefield enjoys his forthcoming wrongful death suits.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 12:25 PM

I have a serious problem with this because all it does is manufacture fear. We’re putting children at much greater risks by not vaccinating them. This deamonizing of medical professionals and the medical profession will cause more damage in the long term.

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 11:54 AM

I assume you’re talking about Lancet, and the disrepute that rag has brought on the profession, right?

progressoverpeace on February 9, 2009 at 12:27 PM

Exactly why I’ve never completely bought the hysteria that thimerosal causes autism. Doesn’t change the fact that you are pumping mercury into your child, however. Even taking autism out of the equation, it still doesn’t feel right.

There are NO childhood vaccines that contain thimerosal. And thimerosal has been used in vaccines since they were first developed, why only now do we see autism?

BTW, do your kids eat fish?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:28 PM

I’m sure this goes the other way, too, right? In other words, have there ever been studies that showed a drug to be safe, and then it was proven down the line to be not safe?

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:29 PM

There are NO childhood vaccines that contain thimerosal. And thimerosal has been used in vaccines since they were first developed, why only now do we see autism?

Again… why I’ve never completely bought into the thimerosal-autism link.

BTW, do your kids eat fish?

No, we’re not really fish eaters. But if we were, I’d try to make sure it was non-farm-raised fish. Would you look down on me for that, too?

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:35 PM

I’m sure this goes the other way, too, right? In other words, have there ever been studies that showed a drug to be safe, and then it was proven down the line to be not safe?

Yes, there were studies that showed a drug to be safe, but once it was in general use, it was shown to have deleterious effects.

Is there something here we are discussing that fits that discription?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:36 PM

Many credible physicians worry about dangers inherent in vaccinations. I am one of them. In 1986 Congress enacted the Vaccine Damage Act in order to compensate families of children determined to be victims of vaccines. If my memory serves me, the amount was 250-500,000.00 for the death of child and a million for a child with brain damage. The drug companies were in favor of this at the time as well, because they were having difficulty getting insurance for their vaccines. For many years they have been spreading vaccine “lots” around the country so as to avoid cluster outbreaks from bad vaccines in any one region of the country. There are bad lots and you can find these bad lots posted on websites. There are doctors who do not vaccinate their own children nor do they take the flu shot. Some of your arguments that suggest the debate is over, sound reminiscent of the global warming proponents who act as if there is no debate amongst educated people. A flawed or contrived research project does not either prove or disprove a point of view. I suggest to you that there are more contrived research articles out there funded by the vaccine makers, just as there are with other drugs. Who hasn’t read the headlines about how money influences researchers?

demigogue on February 9, 2009 at 12:40 PM

No, we’re not really fish eaters. But if we were, I’d try to make sure it was non-farm-raised fish. Would you look down on me for that, too?

Why non-farm-raised fish?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:42 PM

Yes, there were studies that showed a drug to be safe, but once it was in general use, it was shown to have deleterious effects.

Is there something here we are discussing that fits that discription?

My point is, those studies came from the ‘medical community’, too.

In the end, it’s up to the person receiving the medication (or their parent) to research and make up their own mind. Why are there people that seem to have so much angst towards that position? I would think fellow conservatives would appreciate the idea of using one’s own common sense and judgement, in conjunction with what the experts are saying, to come to a decision. It’s either that or blindly accept everything. Guess that’s just not me.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:43 PM

“Your “overloading” hypothesis is garbage.”

Since I have three family members who are doctors (one of whom is in pediatrics) I will take their recomendations over someone who cannot even post a civil response.

They all say that there is absolutely nothing wrong with slowing down the reccomended schedule and spacing the vaccinations out. The problem in this debate is people like you who want to castigate anyone who thinks differently than you. If you want to blindly go down the path with your children GREAT I am not trying to force you to do things differently. You should allow others the same courtesy and at least avoid denigrating them.

America1st on February 9, 2009 at 12:44 PM

Why non-farm-raised fish?

More PCBs in farm-raised fish.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:46 PM

Many credible physicians worry about dangers inherent in vaccinations. I am one of them.

And what, exactly, does your screed have to do with MMR and autism?

Seems to me that it’s just another poorly disguised attempt to scare people away from vaccines.

And BTW, I’m Santa Claus.

Really.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:47 PM

Injecting anything into the bodies of our children takes an act of faith in the science and the doctors who provide the vaccination or medication.

This American Life had a great story about this. The reporter surmised that perhaps part of the problem is the organic movement: You’re taught that everything that goes into your child should be wholesome and from known sources, and then a mystery substance with no ingredient list and of unknown origin is supposed to be injected directly into your child’s bloodstream. Some parents just can’t deal with it and latch on to any argument that they have to whisk their child away from the doctor. It’s not just this study, either; one of the mothers pretty much says, “Some doctors lie, so I can’t trust anything any doctor says.” Of course, she’d point to a discredited study in a peer-reviewed journal as proof that doctors lie and can’t be trusted.

Actually, this isn’t the only story of last week to have a link to the vaccine/autism controversy. If I said, “hogwash,” could you guess the other?

calbear on February 9, 2009 at 12:47 PM

Tomblvd, why do you have so much attitude/hatefulness about this? Do you have kids?

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:51 PM

More PCBs in farm-raised fish

.

Uh, we are talking mercury, and wild fish have high levels of mercury in them. Not that it means anything as far as health matters go, but its interesting that all these people so scared of a fraction of a miligram of mercury in a shot eat seafood without a care.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:51 PM

Ed,

I think you need to make clear that this particular study dealt with MMR and autism, not thimerosol. People seem to be confusing the two.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 12:52 PM

Tomblvd, why do you have so much attitude/hatefulness about this? Do you have kids?

Show me hatefulness please.

I have attitude becuase I’m a doctor and I’m tired of defending my profession from people who get their information from google.

And I have three fully innoculated kids.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:54 PM

but its interesting that all these people so scared of a fraction of a miligram of mercury in a shot eat seafood without a care.

No, most people that would worry about the mercury in a shot have also heard about/worry about the mercury in fish. It’s gotten a lot of attention, too. Probably not quite as much because it’s a little different than shooting it directly into the body of a 9 month old baby, eh?

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:56 PM

Exactly why I’ve never completely bought the hysteria that thimerosal causes autism. Doesn’t change the fact that you are pumping mercury into your child, however. Even taking autism out of the equation, it still doesn’t feel right.

You get exposed to mercury from fish and many other things. My mother told me when she was a kid, they used to play with it in science class. I’m not saying that we should play with mercury today, what I’m saying is that all these non-government association of physicians have agreed that the amount of thimerseral in vaccinations is not harmful.

I understand this. And I’ve never had a doctor tell me anything but that he/she thinks that thimerosal is safe, and they always site the studies. That’s fine and it gives a parent a little bit of comfort. However, the medical community has been wrong before, no?

Thats why its called practicing medicine. We all take risks when getting a medical procedure. There are risks with over the counter drugs, prescription drugs, surgeries, even donating blood. Every doctor I’ve ever had would warn me of the risk of a procedure. If the risk outweighed the benefit, I didn’t go through with it.

If we can’t find an alternative, vaccines are going to be more expensive, making it much more difficult for the less advantaged to get proper vaccinations.
Interestingly, the ONLY place I am able to find the thimerosal-free flu shots every year is the walk-in clinic that is meant for lower income families or families without health insurance. It’s never been available at our pediatrician’s office. Why? Cause the mercury-free costs a little more for the office. Well, give me the choice and I’ll pay a little more for the mercury free.

OK, that’s the flu shot. Different vaccinations have different shelflives. Maybe the flu vaccinaiton is very cheap to make so having a preservative doens’t make a difference at all. In most cases, its pracically given away.

Noone is “demonizing” anyone, or at least I’m not. As I said earlier, my kids have never missed a vaccination and never will. And I trust our physicians to tell us what their experience and knowledge tells them to be true. However, a parent still has the freedom to exercise judgement. It’s good for a parent to research and know what is being put in their child’s body, yes? Or do you think that we should blindly accept it as all good just because they are the physicians?

Hey, if I’m not comfortable with my doctor, I see another doctor. I have no problem getting a second opinion. I’m not going to live in fear of medical practices because of sensationalism. No, you don’t have to listen to the doctor but you don’t have to act like you know more than your doctor either.

If you can’t trust doctors, what are you going to do when you need medical treatment?

I assume you’re talking about Lancet, and the disrepute that rag has brought on the profession, right?

progressoverpeace on February 9, 2009 at 12:27 PM

That and idiot celbutards who parrot the same thing because they want to be part of some cause to remain relevant. They don’t care about concequences, they just want to remian in the spotlight while tugging on heartstrings.

Remember when Oprah opened her gaping maw and said she was never eating beef again because the mad cow scare? Yeah, cattle farmers didn’t like that.

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 12:58 PM

No, most people that would worry about the mercury in a shot have also heard about/worry about the mercury in fish. It’s gotten a lot of attention, too. Probably not quite as much because it’s a little different than shooting it directly into the body of a 9 month old baby, eh?

How much, exactly, are we “shooting” into a 9 month old baby?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 12:59 PM

You’re very high and mighty, like you are God or something. You don’t want us to do our own research and you want us to just take your word for it. Sorry, ain’t happening. As mentioned, you guys (physicians) have been wrong in the past. Good for you for being smart and having lots of education. But you aren’t infallible. Until you are, I’ll continue to use a bit of my own judgement, as well.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:59 PM

How much, exactly, are we “shooting” into a 9 month old baby?

Flu shot? If I remember correctly, they now recommend babies over 6 months get the flu shot.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 1:00 PM

Flu shot? If I remember correctly, they now recommend babies over 6 months get the flu shot.

Sigh, I’ll rephrase:

How much mercury, exactly, are we “shooting” into a 9 month old baby?

And you do realize, don’t you, that unlike the other vaccines, flu shots are not mandatory?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 1:04 PM

“The routine injection creates immunities for children against mumps, measles, and rubella or German measles, but some parents have refused to give their children the vaccine”…
Check the stats on so-called immunizations and the millions paid out to the families of children who had extreme reactions to them, then tell me that these shots are safe and effective. This info is online.
Mercury was used in the past to ‘preserve’ these concoctions and has caused lots of problems (as well as the cultures) including autism and death. There is a lot of information that the drug companies and our ‘gov’t’ don’t want us to know. Get informed; your doctor won’t tell you the truth even if he knows it.

Christine on February 9, 2009 at 1:04 PM

Another note-most if not all medical studies show correlation, not causation. Causation is very difficult to prove. So generally I look at most individual studies with some skepticism. You have to look carefully at the methodology and reproducibility of the study. A study is more likely to be useful if there are many other studies backing it up.

That’s generally how science is. I tend to ignore the sensationalist studies that news broadcasters get excited about- a new study shows X causes cancer or whatever. Usually another study the next year will contradict the previous one, yet people don’t hear about it because it’s not exciting. People end up getting stressed out over nothing.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 1:05 PM

None of these shots should be mandatory…it is against our constitution to demand that children of tax-paying citizens have them when they ARE NOT proven to be anything close to ‘safe and effective’.

Christine on February 9, 2009 at 1:07 PM

Mercury was used in the past to ‘preserve’ these concoctions and has caused lots of problems (as well as the cultures) including autism and death. There is a lot of information that the drug companies and our ‘gov’t’ don’t want us to know. Get informed; your doctor won’t tell you the truth even if he knows it.

Yet another know-nothing confusing MMR and thimerosal.

I’ll say it again, thimerosal was NEVER used in MMR.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 1:09 PM

For more than ten years, debate has raged over a possible link between the MMR vaccine shot and autism in children.

Not really. The paper was discredited almost from the beginning, and it was published as a tentative result. Even Wakefield’s co-authors withdrew their names from the study.

Even though the paper’s tone was more tentative than one would have thought given the furor it launched and even though it stated that the authors “did not prove an association between measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine and the syndrome described,” Wakefield promoted his results to the media as though he had definitely found a link between the MMR vaccine and a syndrome consisting of regressive autism and inflammatory bowel disease.

The real villains here are Wakefield himself, some unscrupulous trial lawyers, alt-med quacks, and some misguided parents’ advocacy groups.

RightOFLeft on February 9, 2009 at 1:09 PM

“People end up getting stressed out over nothing.” Tell that to someone who has lost a (formerly healthy) child because he/she ‘had to have’ one of these shots.

Christine on February 9, 2009 at 1:10 PM

None of these shots should be mandatory…it is against our constitution to demand that children of tax-paying citizens have them when they ARE NOT proven to be anything close to ’safe and effective’.

Christine, if they aren’t effective, what has happened to polio, smallpox, rubella, measles, pertussus, etc?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 1:11 PM

“People end up getting stressed out over nothing.” Tell that to someone who has lost a (formerly healthy) child because he/she ‘had to have’ one of these shots.

Christine on February 9, 2009 at 1:10 PM

Tell that to the MILLIONS saved from Polio, Dip, Mumps, ect…. The epidimics that have been PREVENTED as opposed to 3rd world countries that do NOT have our advances… Maybe you’d like to live there so your not “forced” into keeping the rest of us free from your ignorance. Free from the deadly illnesses your crumb crunchers would have passed to our kids.

Mark Garnett on February 9, 2009 at 1:16 PM

You’re very high and mighty, like you are God or something. You don’t want us to do our own research and you want us to just take your word for it. Sorry, ain’t happening. As mentioned, you guys (physicians) have been wrong in the past. Good for you for being smart and having lots of education. But you aren’t infallible. Until you are, I’ll continue to use a bit of my own judgement, as well.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 12:59 PM

I’d trust a doctor to know what’s right for my son than some wackjob conspiracy theorist posting a bunch of crap on the internet.

According to your logic, your doctor doesn’t know squat but lets go research stuff on the interenet. We don’t know what we’re reading but its on the internet so it has to be true! Lets not ask our doctor about what we read on the interneet because they don’t know squat!

I want to know, if you can’t trust your doctor for a medical procedure, are you just going to say hell with it and remain in pain or worse die? What it its your kid? Are you going to shop around every doctor in your area till one gives you the answer you want to hear? What if his answer is wrong and something worse happens?

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 1:17 PM

Get informed; your doctor won’t tell you the truth even if he knows it.

And those people on the street are all following YOU, right?

Exactly why I know this vaccine hysteria is rubbish, the kind of people who fall for it.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 1:35 PM

And those people on the street are all following YOU, right?

Exactly why I know this vaccine hysteria is rubbish, the kind of people who fall for it.

Heh.

I wonder where these “google doctors” go when they break a bone?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 1:39 PM

I wonder where these “google doctors” go when they break a bone?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 1:39 PM

These are the same idiots that vote for Barry…

Si I guess they go to The Messiah for healing…

Mark Garnett on February 9, 2009 at 1:42 PM

Si I guess they go to The Messiah for healing…

Obama can walk on water, but onto a helicopter?

It’s above his paygrade, apparently.

I don’t recall any bibical verses that started out “And then Jesus comically knocked his melon on the doorframe”, but then I’m sure our Democrat friends can find one, perhaps in the Koran.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 1:45 PM

I want to know, if you can’t trust your doctor for a medical procedure, are you just going to say hell with it and remain in pain or worse die? What it its your kid?

Ridiculous.

Lay-Z, you haven’t been listening and are making a lot of uninformed judgements. I say again, my children have never and will never miss a vaccination.

I am the furthest from a “wackjob conspiracy theorist”. You see, what I do is I watch out for my kids. If I hear that the preservative in flu shots might have a connection to autism, I’ll look into it. Then… guess what??, I’ll ask my doctor about it. I may research it some more then. I take everything into account.

And I don’t know how much time you have spent online, but there is actually some viable stuff on the internet. It’s not all fluff.

So, anyway, if taking all sides into account makes me a “wackjob conspiracy theorist” in your mind, so be it. Again, thinking for myself and watching out for the best interests of my kids is not something I will ever apologize for, even to omnipotent physicians.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 1:50 PM

“Sigh, I’ll rephrase:”

“Yet another know-nothing confusing MMR and thimerosal.”

I have a hard time believing you are a Doctor when you talk this way. My worst experiences with Doctor’s dismissing concerns were not nearly so rude.

If you are a Doctor, you need a complete overhaul in the way you deal with people and dissent.

America1st on February 9, 2009 at 2:06 PM

None of these shots should be mandatory…it is against our constitution to demand that children of tax-paying citizens have them when they ARE NOT proven to be anything close to ’safe and effective’.

Christine on February 9, 2009 at 1:07 PM

Every state has some form of exemption – no one is violating your constitutional rights to expose your child to known deadly diseases, or to risk spreading those diseases to other unimmunized children/adults.
Please take into consideration if you don’t vaccinate your kid and they contract measles/mumps/rubella/whooping cough/diphtheria etc they may give it to the kid next to them who was lucky enough to have their cancer caught & treated only to contract a preventable disease from your kid.

Dr. Wakefield was discredited more than 3 years ago, but his fake research legacy won’t go away. The times story fails to mention that Dr. Wakefield’s “study” was funded by the lawyers for whom he was consult & expert witness. He has committed maleficence, and should be incarcerated.

batterup on February 9, 2009 at 2:09 PM

I have a hard time believing you are a Doctor when you talk this way. My worst experiences with Doctor’s dismissing concerns were not nearly so rude.

If you are a Doctor, you need a complete overhaul in the way you deal with people and dissent.

This isn’t “concerns” or “dissent”. It is out and out misinformation.

When people post false information, I have no reason to be nice, especially when I’m accused of pushing vaccines because of greed.

And I can’t help but notice all of your assertions have been addressed, and you’ve ignored them competely.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 2:14 PM

“Your “overloading” hypothesis is garbage.”

Since I have three family members who are doctors (one of whom is in pediatrics) I will take their recomendations over someone who cannot even post a civil response.

They all say that there is absolutely nothing wrong with slowing down the reccomended schedule and spacing the vaccinations out. The problem in this debate is people like you who want to castigate anyone who thinks differently than you. If you want to blindly go down the path with your children GREAT I am not trying to force you to do things differently. You should allow others the same courtesy and at least avoid denigrating them.

America1st on February 9, 2009 at 12:44 PM

Sorry I missed the “discussion” in the beginning. I have done a bit of research into the subject (first because of my reactions to vaccines and because we had to decide if to give them to my daughter) and the best conclusion I have been able to come up with is that Autism and to a lesser extent SIDS is that it is caused by an overwhelming of a weakened immune system (possibly also causing scurvy) by X. X in this discussion being vaccines. My wife really wanted our daughter to get vaccines because “her other 2 kids did not have any problems” when they got their vaccines. Talk about small pool for a scientific study. We came up with a compromise of she would get most (with a few exceptions) after getting very healthy doses of vitamin C to build up the immune system prior to and after the vaccines. I will try to find some of the best sources for this theory and post later but make no guarantee as to the lack of time today for me.
My bigger problem is the number of conservative who are perfectly willing to say the government can’t do anything right(except the military) but are perfectly willing to let the government tell them how to raise their kids. Here in Texas (as someone mentioned earlier) our supposed republican governor (Perry) tried to sneak through a law forcing grade school kids to get the vaccine to prevent an STD. Luckily we had some conservative that stood up and fought him on it. Then it came out that he had many ties to the manufacturer. DUH! If Perry wants to use his own money to help prevent these diseases or use his position as a bully pulpit for the vaccines go right ahead, but don’t force drugs on my family.
Which leads to my biggest problem. The Pharmaceutical like so many other industries have too many ties to the government. People complain about the current government ties to the financial, but this stuff has been going on for quite a time and is just coming to fruition now but started long ago with the government’s fingers into everything. There are laws in place to protect the pharmaceuticals from prosecution and uses our tax dollars to pay for damages for cases of vaccine reactions. I hate to be the conspiracy theorist but why do they need this protection if they are “perfectly safe.” There will never be one right answer for all people (except choosing to follow Jesus) which is why the government needs to keep their greedy paws out of things and let people make their own decisions right or wrong for the most part. (They should have a part in the prevention of dangerous drugs being out there – but even with that, if a person believes the benefit outweighs the risk why should the government prevent its use – see its hard to be a conservative)

Corsair on February 9, 2009 at 2:27 PM

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 1:50 PM

When you say things like this:

You’re very high and mighty, like you are God or something. You don’t want us to do our own research and you want us to just take your word for it.

…it leads me to believe that you have something against doctors giving medical advice. I’ve yet to meet a doctor that didn’t want patient feedback. My son’s pediatrician even recommended a couple websites to get some advice and he was always available to answer questions. You sound like doctors only want us to listen to them and thats it.

I never said physicians were omnipotent. If I wasn’t comfortable with a doctor, I asked for a second opinion. I have to have some trust for my physician to look out for my health and my familiy’s health.

I guess we can agree on one thing, we want whats best for our children. What parent wouldn’t? Still I think the risk of not vaccinating is much greater than vaccinating.

The problem I have is that people think what they read on the web is the absolute truth. The web isn’t infallable either.

I’ve had anthrax vaccinations eight years ago when I was in the Army including a mess of other vaccinations and I didn’t have a choice. The military loves to vaccinate you for everything and refusing it is disobeying a direct order. I’m still waiting for them to f*** me up. Eight years later and I’m still healthy.

The media made a big deal about anthrax vaccinations and sensationalism set in that it was evil and the Army was evil for protecting soldiers against a biological agent.

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 2:34 PM

I hate to be the conspiracy theorist but why do they need this protection if they are “perfectly safe.”

Because of our idiotic tort laws along with our dimwitted juries?

If one kid dies after taking a vaccine, whether or not it causes the death, guess who will pay and guess how much they will pay?

And guess how much vaccines will cost after that, if any private company is still stupid enough to manufacture them?

Then we’ll have the feds in charge of making the vaccines and you won’t be able to sue them, either.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Tell that to the MILLIONS saved from Polio, Dip, Mumps, ect…. The epidimics that have been PREVENTED as opposed to 3rd world countries that do NOT have our advances… Maybe you’d like to live there so your not “forced” into keeping the rest of us free from your ignorance. Free from the deadly illnesses your crumb crunchers would have passed to our kids.

Mark Garnett on February 9, 2009 at 1:16 PM

If you have your kids immunized, what do you have to worry about from “those ignorant rubes” who don’t have theirs immunized. Your kids are 100 percent protected, so what are you getting so worked up about that you need to force other people to get theirs (unless they want to jump through hoops to not get them)

Corsair on February 9, 2009 at 2:37 PM

I guess we can agree on one thing, we want whats best for our children. What parent wouldn’t? Still I think the risk of not vaccinating is much greater than vaccinating.
Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Then why do you want to force others to go against what they believe is right. Yes some states allow exceptions but even in those states it takes a lot of paperwork and still you could run into trouble if some school councilor/nurse tries to force the issue – and yes, it does happen.

Corsair on February 9, 2009 at 2:41 PM

it leads me to believe that you have something against doctors giving medical advice. I’ve yet to meet a doctor that didn’t want patient feedback.

Absolutely not. I trust and appreciate my family’s doctors. I have no problem accepting and, of course, want their medical advice. However, over the course of this conversation, Tom has rubbed me the wrong way. He seems irritated that I, a regular ol’ layperson, would dare think that the medical community could possibly be wrong about something, and that I would have the audacity to research my options.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 2:45 PM

Christine, I hate to break it too you but everyone, EVERYONE, is biased and has potential conflicts of interest–you, me, pharma execs, research docs, homeopathic healers, random bloggers. Everyone has an agenda and no one can be impartial on anything because of basic human nature. That’s why research is peer-reviewed and that’s why we have checks and balances. When it comes to truth, one has to weigh both sides of an issue and make a sensible decision.

It sounds like you’ve only studied one side of the vaccine issue and refuse to even acknowledge the merits of the other. Anti-vaccine people have agendas too. I read a anti-vaccine book by a medical doctor (who was also a faculty member at a med school) and it turns out she is making money off of the controversy with really expensive and unproven treatments for autism. Conflict of interest? It’s not just for ”evil” pharma companies and government agents.

The anti-vaccine truthers will never acknowledge anything that contradicts their beliefs. They are too emotionally tied to them.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 2:47 PM

If you have your kids immunized, what do you have to worry about from “those ignorant rubes” who don’t have theirs immunized. Your kids are 100 percent protected, so what are you getting so worked up about that you need to force other people to get theirs (unless they want to jump through hoops to not get them)

Corsair, you said earlier that you’ve done research into vaccines, yet you don’t understand the absolute basics of immunization.

NO vaccine is 100% effective. Not one. Therefore we rely on something called “herd immunity”. That means you need to innoculate as many people as possible to protect those who have been vaccinated but aren’t completely immune. The fewer percentage of people innoculated, the greater chance of someone getting sick.

The need for and concept of herd immunity completely invalidates your argument.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 2:48 PM

I’ve had anthrax vaccinations eight years ago when I was in the Army including a mess of other vaccinations and I didn’t have a choice. The military loves to vaccinate you for everything and refusing it is disobeying a direct order. I’m still waiting for them to f*** me up. Eight years later and I’m still healthy.

The media made a big deal about anthrax vaccinations and sensationalism set in that it was evil and the Army was evil for protecting soldiers against a biological agent.

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 2:34 PM

Much of the information about the Anthrax vaccine led them to believe it led to Gulf War Syndrome. I think it is possible that the mass of vaccines given at one time overloaded their immune systems(that may have been already weakened from other things) and may have been the cause. There has never been a full study done on this that I know of. Most of the evidence is circumstantial and until there is a full study it will never be “proven”.

Corsair on February 9, 2009 at 2:51 PM

Then why do you want to force others to go against what they believe is right. Yes some states allow exceptions but even in those states it takes a lot of paperwork and still you could run into trouble if some school councilor/nurse tries to force the issue – and yes, it does happen.

Corsair on February 9, 2009 at 2:41 PM

I didn’t say I was forcing anything on anyone. I just said that not vaccinating has a greater risk.

So its OK for Jenny McCarthy to say MMR caused her son to become autistic? Even worse is that she gave parents of autistic children false hope claiming her son was “cured” through Chelation therapy and it turns out it doesn’t work.

That’s my beef; when fear, uncertainty, and doubt are caused with no relevant facts to back them up.

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 2:58 PM

I think it is possible that the mass of vaccines given at one time

There was no “mass of vaccines” given at one time during the Gulf War. Military members were up to date on vaccines prior to deployment. We were given the Anthrax vaccine in theater but it was given alone.

Some people blame pyrostigmine bromide, the oil fires, expired gas mask filters, blah, blah, blah.

I blame malingerers who cynically faked symptoms when they returned, in order to bilk money out of the DoD and to set themselves up for a life of ease at taxpayer expense.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 2:59 PM

Tom has rubbed me the wrong way. He seems irritated that I, a regular ol’ layperson, would dare think that the medical community could possibly be wrong about something, and that I would have the audacity to research my options.

First of all, I’ve been accused of being “greedy” and in the pocket of “big pharmaceutical companies”, allowing kids to be harmed to make money. Yea, that gets me in a bad mood.

And I’d have a lot more faith in your ability to research your own opinions if you weren’t so wrong. You make two assertions in your first post.

1. Autism rates have been going up for the last 10-15 years and we don’t know why.

Well, it’s closer to 20 years, but no matter, we do know what’s causing rates to rise, changing diagnosis and increased government money. In addition, closer research would have shown you that autism is going up in countries that haven’t always had the combined MMR, like Japan.

2. You say MMR contained thimerosal.

Well, it never did.

So much for your “research”.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 3:01 PM

I think it is possible that the mass of vaccines given at one time overloaded their immune systems

That is a myth.

The immune system of even an infant is capable of handling 10000 vaccines at one time.

‘Addressing Parents’ Concerns: Do Multiple Vaccines Overwhelm or Weaken the Infant’s Immune System?’, Paul Offit et al, Pediatrics; 109;124-129, January 2002

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 3:04 PM

Tomblvd,

I agree completely. Herd immunity is what protects the most vulnerable in our population, the very young, the very old, and the immunocompromised. If you don’t want to vaccinate, then you are relying on the rest of us to keep your kids healthy. Personally, Texas is one of the riskiest places in the country not to vaccinate because of the high numbers of illegal immigrants. Almost every year there’s an outbreak of measles in our schools because some ill-informed people didn’t vaccinate their kids. Measles is one of the leading causes of death for kids in third world countries. It’s not something to be blown off. Why would anyone risk their kids like that?

And the fed and state governments have in interest in public health. That’s why we have Health depts. If you have a highly contagious and deadly disease like TB, the gov is not going to let you go spreading it around. And it’s perfectly constitutional.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 3:05 PM

I agree completely. Herd immunity is what protects the most vulnerable in our population, the very young, the very old, and the immunocompromised

But you see, if I tell somebody who says they’ve done their own “research”, and still doesn’t know what herd immunity is, and thinks vaccines are 100% effective, that they don’t know what they’re talking about, I’m being mean and unprofessional.

Screw-it, I’m getting tired of fighting with google experts.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 3:10 PM

NO vaccine is 100% effective. Not one. Therefore we rely on something called “herd immunity”. That means you need to innoculate as many people as possible to protect those who have been vaccinated but aren’t completely immune. The fewer percentage of people innoculated, the greater chance of someone getting sick.

Actually most are only about 60 – 70 percent effective. The person (I may have misquoted) said they were safe and effective or was having issues with another person who said they were not safe and effective. Therefore the (unproven) risk of getting the vaccines for something that is (possibly) not effective. You believe the risk of the disease outweighs the risk of the vaccine. I believe the risk of the vaccine outweighs the risk of the risk of the disease(most of which are easily treated with “modern” medicine. So whose belief is to be forced on the other – you feel to protect your kids better you need to force my kids to get their vaccines. I feel that the risk of the vaccines is worse (even though I compromised with my wife and got them anyway)
I believe that this is the heart of the Conservative/Libertarian debate over how much power the government should have over our lives. How much power are you willing to let the government have to protect you and your family. We will be having this discussion for years because everyone has a different threshold for how much liberty they are willing to give up for perceived safety.
I sometimes get a little sarcastic for my own good, so I apologize to the offended.

Corsair on February 9, 2009 at 3:12 PM

believe that this is the heart of the Conservative/Libertarian debate over how much power the government should have over our lives

The government is supposed guarantee the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Ensuring that diseases aren’t spread and kill people is protecting my right to life.

Lay-Z on February 9, 2009 at 3:16 PM

I believe that this is the heart of the Conservative/Libertarian debate over how much power the government should have over our lives

The only kids “forced” by the government to have these vaccines are those attending public schools, that I know of.

You don’t have to send your kids to public schools, but you are taxed to death to support them, of course.

I would think many private schools though, would want proof that children are immunized prior to allowing them to enroll.

But you always have the choice of home schooling.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 3:17 PM

Tomblvd,

Heh. Yes, Google’s probably the best and worst thing to happen to the internet.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 3:18 PM

Actually most are only about 60 – 70 percent effective

You may be thinking of the current flu vaccine. Most childhood vaccines are around 85-90% effective.

You believe the risk of the disease outweighs the risk of the vaccine. I believe the risk of the vaccine outweighs the risk of the risk of the disease(most of which are easily treated with “modern” medicine.

During the last measles outbreak in the 80s in the us (when vaccination rates were only around 50%) there were 55,622 measles cases, 11,251 hospitalizations, and 125 deaths. What vaccine preventable diseases are “easily treatable”?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 3:24 PM

Tom, two questions for you, sir:

1) The mercury found in Thimerosal is completely, 100% safe and has absolutely no negative effects (on the brain or otherwise)? Is that correct?
2) You are 100% confident that the answer you just gave will be the exact same answer you give 30, 40 years from now. Is that correct?

Keep autism out of it (cause as I’ve said several times, that’s not what it’s about for me) and answer those questions please.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 3:36 PM

1) The mercury found in Thimerosal is completely, 100% safe and has absolutely no negative effects (on the brain or otherwise)? Is that correct?

At what dosage?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 3:38 PM

“I’m getting tired of fighting with google experts.”

Thank god. I am sure everyone here is tired of listening to an a$$hat pretending to be a doctor ridiculing people and positions.

America1st on February 9, 2009 at 3:49 PM

At what dosage?

12.5 micrograms – flu shot. Patient is 15 pounds and has to have a second flu shot a month later.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 3:52 PM

Thank god. I am sure everyone here is tired of listening to an a$$hat pretending to be a doctor ridiculing people and positions

This from the person who wrote:

Did they disprove the figures in Denmark? The incidence of Autism in Denmark dramatically increased 729% since 1987 when MMR was introduced.

Ah yes, the expert rantings of America1st from which we have:

MMR and autism – Denmark

http://www.medicine.ox.ac.uk/bandolier/booth/Vaccines/MMRDen.html

Clinical bottom line:

A large survey of all children born in Denmark between January 1991 to December 1998 shows no difference in the incidence of autism between vaccinated and unvaccinated children.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 4:02 PM

1) The mercury found in Thimerosal is completely, 100% safe and has absolutely no negative effects (on the brain or otherwise)? Is that correct?

Nothing on this planet is 100% completely safe. But 12.5 micrograms is relatively safe for someone who is not allergic to mercury containing compounds.

2) You are 100% confident that the answer you just gave will be the exact same answer you give 30, 40 years from now. Is that correct?

No, I’m not sure of anything. But considering thimerosal has been used for 70 years in many different ways, if you are over 40 you will remember Merthiolate. That was the brand name of thimerosal. I swabbed copious amount of the stuff on cuts and bruises.

So, to aviod your pidgeonhole, no, nothing is absolutely 100% safe nor can it be guaranteed to be in perpetuity.

So tell me, using your new criteria, how are companies going to get new drugs and other formulations (i.e. food additives) approved. Looks like you’ve created quite the hurdle.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 4:10 PM

tomblvd
When you used the word “screed” to address my comments, did you intend to use the form “a ranting piece of writing”? I did not mean that, nor on reflection do I see it in my paragraph. However, I see you are ranting regularly. I think you are thin skinned and it seems you are having difficulty having an intelligent conversation with other interested parties. This is a very important issue to parents, children and doctors and you should not fear the conversation. Still you seem to be Al Gore-like in your blind faith acceptance of the sacrimemnt of vaccinations and very intolerant of other educated people who challenge your faith. It is clear we all are inferior.

demigogue on February 9, 2009 at 4:15 PM

When you used the word “screed” to address my comments, did you intend to use the form “a ranting piece of writing”?

Yes I did.

First of all, I have never met a physician who has not had his/her children immunized, nor do I know any who think MMR or thimerosal cause autism. Second, your post has nothing to do with MMR, the original point of the post, or even thimerosal, the “other” point. You say that I say “the debate is over” and then compare me to Al Gore. Well what debate? And comparing me to Gore puts your post into the catergory of “screed”.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 4:23 PM

This is a very important issue to parents, children and doctors and you should not fear the conversation.

An issue that has been settled in so many different ways that further conversation is really futile.

If you’re not convinced by now, you’ll never be convinced.

As a parent, I have too many things to worry about other than the miniscule possibilty that vaccines cause autism.

Such as, the possibility that my kid could get measles, etc. which have no treatment other than letting the disease run its course.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 4:24 PM

“relatively safe”

Comforting.

I’m not creating a hurdle for anything. I’m sure there are preservation benefits of thimerosal and I’m not saying it shouldn’t be used. I’m simply trying to get an egocentric doctor to understand that, though he thinks he has all the answers, it often behooves a patient to do their own research, and then do what they feel comfortable with.

In my case, I find it doesn’t hurt anyone to look for a mercury-free flu shot for my kids.

Here are some more questions, just for fun.

Mercury has been shown to cause brain degeneration, is that correct? But there is also a lot unkown about it, such as how it effects different people differently, is that correct? What is known about mercury, is that it passes the blood-brain barrier and that is has been shown to accumulate in the brain tissue, is that correct?

Taking all that into account, why would I want that given to my child… in ANY dosage?

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 4:29 PM

Tomblvd

What debate? I thought this was a debate. Again, from your point of view, there is no debate, ergo, it is over. Your personal experience set aside,(you might go outside once in awhile) I know numerous physicians who do not vaccinate their own and make a point to educate parents when making the decision for their own kids. They will in fact vaccinate if that is what the parents decide. Your condescending attitude towards others is so “God-like” but then you are a doctor. Anyway, the bookstores are full of many credible resources arguing both the pros and cons of vaccination. To suggest that anyone disagrees with you is a google expert, is well, small minded, not very God like. My shelves have many books discussing these very important issues. NOW THAT IS A SCREED!

demigogue on February 9, 2009 at 4:35 PM

“relatively safe”

Comforting.

Please give me the name of a drug, additive or evn food that is “completely safe”.

Mercury has been shown to cause brain degeneration, is that correct? But there is also a lot unkown about it, such as how it effects different people differently, is that correct? What is known about mercury, is that it passes the blood-brain barrier and that is has been shown to accumulate in the brain tissue, is that correct?

Aren’t you the least bit embarassed by the total lack of reseach skills you’ve shown on this thread?

Here’s a hint: Thimerosal breaks down into a certain kind of mercury. You might want to look up what that is before you start talking about “accumulat(ing) in the brain tissue”.

In addition, how is one dose of 12.5 microgram going to “accumulate” anywhere? In order for something to “accumualte”, there has to be constant exposure.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 4:36 PM

…The only kids “forced” by the government to have these vaccines are those attending public schools, that I know of.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 3:17 PM

Every State has an exemption that allows parents to refuse vaccines and put their kids in public school. Only Mississippi and W. Virginia limits theirs to a medical exemption. This is all the more reason for parents to be diligent in following the CDC vaccination schedule, your child may be in school with a non-vaccinated child.

The CDC sites and JAMA can be cumbersome for folks to sift through, the Johns Hopkins site has a lot of easily understandable vaccination information.

batterup on February 9, 2009 at 4:42 PM

What debate?

First of all, dueling anecdotes is not a debate. I don’t believe that you know “numerous” physicians who don’t vaccinate their children (are you sure you aren’t confusing them with chiropractors?).

Second, can you give me one piece of infomation that I have given that is provably incorrect? Is it wrong for me to correct someone who claims that MMR contianed thimerosal? How about the “too soon, too early” meme? That is nothing but scare mongering, and I posted a study to prove it.

Now, other than “I know people”, do you have any point to make, or are you just going to continue to call me names?

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 4:43 PM

I surrender, you’re just too good for me. I would suggest all of us who disagree, just check our brains at the door and just trust you to make our decisions for us. Thanks for being there man! I bet you are blast at dinner parties.

demigogue on February 9, 2009 at 4:46 PM

I surrender, you’re just too good for me. I would suggest all of us who disagree, just check our brains at the door and just trust you to make our decisions for us. Thanks for being there man! I bet you are blast at dinner parties.

No real point? Color me suprised….

I know numerous physicians who say I’m a lot of fun at dinner parties.

Next time, pick a subject you have at least a passing knowledge in.

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 4:49 PM

Every State has an exemption that allows parents to refuse vaccines and put their kids in public school.

So this pretty much completely demolishes the “liberterian” line of debate the anti-vaccine crowd is using.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 4:53 PM

It sure does take these people a long time to look up their anti-vax responses. You’d think they’d have those webpages bookmarked

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 5:15 PM

oy, you remind me of arguing with a liberal.

My one and only point, from the beginning, is very simple: Parents need to use some of their own judgement. For example, if I have a choice between giving my child a mercury-free flu shot and a thimerosal flu shot, I’m going with the mercury free.

Now, you can deny all you want that thimerosal “at that dosage” is fine and that thimerosal’s “certain kind of mercury” is fine, but since in reality you don’t know for sure, and I have the option to get the mercury-free I’ll just do that and avoid the issue all together.

rhinoishere on February 9, 2009 at 5:24 PM

From what I’ve read in the past, the amount of Mercury in the MMR shot is significant, especially for a child, and rushes straight to the brain after injection.
From the CDC website:
Since 2001, with the exception of some influenza (flu) vaccines, thimerosal is not used as a preservative in routinely recommended childhood vaccines.
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/concerns/thimerosal.htm

So currently, mercury isn’t even in MMR shots.

NoDonkey on February 9, 2009 at 11:33 AM

So vaccines no longer have preservatives?

Over 260,000 reported events at VEARS. Those are just the reported events. How many weren’t reported because the parents were so sure the vaccines were safe and were assured that it wasn’t the vaccine.

OK autism has no known link. I’m sure neither to auto-immune diseases, deadly allergies to peanuts, ect., ADD, all on the rise.

No link between excitotoxins in food, or in vaccines.

Yeah, lots of kids get vaccinated and have no known ill effects, that’s great, I hope it’s your kid.

jjjen on February 9, 2009 at 5:38 PM

rhinoishere, the flu vaccine argument isn’t even remotely to the point of the original post. It was brought up when you missed the fact that thimerosal had been removed from all required childhood vaccines for almost a decade now, and had never been in the MMR. And seeing as how the flu vaccines isn’t even required, I’m not even sure what the point was.

If you are that worried about mercury exposure however, you should know a can of tuna has a lot more mercury in it than a vaccine does, not to mention ground water in many area, the air if you live near a coal-fired power plant, etc. And all of those are methyl-mercury, which passes the blood-brain barrier, as opposed to ethyl-mercury, which is what thimerosal breaks down into. There’s a big difference.

Best wishes…

Tomblvd on February 9, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Anyone want to bet that when this string is over, Tomblvd will have the last word?

demigogue on February 9, 2009 at 6:20 PM

Personally, Texas is one of the riskiest places in the country not to vaccinate because of the high numbers of illegal immigrants.

drflykilla on February 9, 2009 at 3:05 PM

Exactly!

I have lived in TX for the last ten years – in South TX, until recently. Nowadays, I live in the Houston area. Things pass through our borders that people cannot even imagine nowadays. And just wait until you have to deal with what passes by Customs at the international airport hubs, such as DFW and Houston-Bush. Of course, Puerto Rico (where I grew up) has even more of an exposure to all of those, since there is plenty of traffic there of illegal drugs and people, even though it is American jurisdiction.

Even more of a reason for me to have my little girls vaccinated on schedule.

newton on February 10, 2009 at 4:03 AM

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