The Truth about vaccines episode 5: HPV, Hep B, SIDS, and Shaken Baby Syndrome

Welcome to part 5 of my discussion of the Truth about Vaccines video series.  You can find links to episodes 1-4 in the index, as well as a run down of all the “experts” who are interviewed.

This episode begins with the HPV vaccine. I have already written about the HPV vaccine, which you can read here.

One: The worst mistake this episode makes is to assume HPV vaccine is only for girls. Host, Ty Bollinger, even claims “I’ve heard this is a public health concern. My question is why are we vaccinating boys for a vaccine that causes cervical cancer.” At no point does he discuss how this vaccine can protect boys as well as girls nor how he thinks girls acquire HPV infections.  As per the provider information for Gardasil 9, the most recently available HPV vaccine in USA, it protects against HPV types 6, 11, 16, 18, 31, 33, 45, 52, and, 58. These represent 81% of the viruses that cause cervical cancer, 74% of the other HPV-associated cancers, and 90% of the HPV types which cause anogenital warts.  Human papillomavirus (HPV) causes most cervical cancers, as well as some cancers of the vagina, vulva, penis, anus, rectum, and oropharynx (cancers of the back of the throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils). These are not limited only to females. A great deal of time, 24 minutes, passes before Ty finally admits that 11,000 males get cancers associated with HPV yearly. And that is all that is said about that.

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Two: Inexplicably, Judy Mikovits is offered as the HPV vaccine expert. To remind you, Judy is a disgraced scientist who chose to embrace pseudoscience rather than admit she made a mistake. She was a researcher looking into possible causes of chronic fatigue syndrome and claimed it was caused by a mouse recombinant virus called XMRV.  The reality is that the XMRV was found to be caused by lab contamination, but Judy could not face facts.  Sadly, bad science has a hard time dying and people desperate to repair their reputation sometimes dig themselves in deep holes.

She says 2-3 strains are associated with cervical cancer but are not the cause of it. She does not elaborate on what she thinks causes cervical cancer if it is not these strains. I think she is playing at words by implying that the virus can cause warts but it is the wrts that cause the cancer, or some such. It is a word play some in antivax land play, as a way to imply that the vaccine cannot actually prevent cancer.  Judy further claims pap smear will identify warts before they become tumerogenic and they should not be mandated for everyone. They should only be offered to families who are susceptible. She does not explain how families would know if they are susceptible to acquiring human papilloma virus nor how one would figure out if one is susceptible to the many types of cancer the virus can cause. Frankly, I think getting the vaccines is a good way to prevent these types of cancers until we do have better genetic screens and preventatives. I am not sure how Judy thinks only pap smears are going to prevent cancer. What if you have a clean pap smear one year and then get diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, less than a year later? That happened to my cousin. She did not survive.

And, pap smears don’t look at throats, penises, anuses, or rectums.

At this point, I start humming C&C music factory’s “Things that make you go hm”

 

Three: Several “experts” come on to discuss how they feel his vaccine is dangerous or unnecessary. The vaccines is presented as very dangerous. But, there have been many large studies of HPV vaccine safety, in various countries, and none have found any significant relationship between the vaccine and serious adverse events. Some other claims are made, such as the vaccine was fast-tracked, it causes other strains to become more virulent, the aluminum in it is neurotoxic, and it was not properly tested. The wonderful Skeptical Raptor has compiled an ever-expanding list of safety studies and more information on HPV vaccines, so I will refer you there to debunk these claims.

 

Four: Toni claims 10% of people who get gardasil visit the ER and 3% of them are hospitalized, per a Canadian study. Study called Adverse events following HPV vaccination, Alberta 2006-2014.  But, the study actually concluded that “of the women who received HPV vaccine 958 were hospitalized and 19,351 had an ED visit within 42 days of immunization.”  This was out of 195,270 females who received 528,913 doses of HPV vaccine.  What she does not say is that only 4 of those hospitalized had a reported AEFI (adverse events following immunization).  For the rest, mental, behavioral and neurodevelopmental disorders (19.4%) were the most frequently coded most responsible diagnoses, followed by diseases of the digestive system (15.8%), and injury, poisoning and certain other consequences of external causes (13.8%). Which is why the report she quotes actually concludes “adverse events following HPV immunization in Alberta are low, consistent with those seen elsewhere, and consistent in the types of event seen elsewhere. ”

Five: Judy claims cancer is not a public health concern so government should not be spending money on cancer prevention.  Several times, it is mentioned that all we need is pap smears will find all and prevent all cervical cancers. These two statements are frightening. My cousin died, of cervical cancer, less than a year after a clean pap smear. She is not alone. How many people are diagnosed with cancer that is found already progressed into advanced stages? Even if they are found early, fighting these cancers is a terrible ordeal for the body. To tell people that all you need is a pap smear, when HPV is responsible for many cancers besides cervical, is a grave lie.  Furthermore, if HPV is a disease passed through sexual contact (not just sex, but sexual contact), then how could it not be a public health concern? That doesn’t even make sense.

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Six:  Ty says Hep b is a disease only of drug users and prostitutes. He claims that if mother tests negative to hep b, there is zero risk of baby having it. Barbara claims hep b has always had low incidence in USA, Europe and Canada. She claims the high risk groups are adults, IV drug users in particular. She says 99.99% percent of mothers are not hep b positive. She claims the vaccine is only designated to children because adult drug users and prostitutes won’t get it.

However, before the vaccine was recommended for all children in 1994, 30% of infected adults had no risk factors. Vaccinating only those infants from at-risk groups was not halting the spread of the infection to children. This was because of incomplete maternal screening and a “substantial proportion of infections occurred in children of Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAG)-negative mothers.” Let that sink in a bit. A substantial number of infections in children came from mothers who had tested negative. You got it. Testing all mothers doesn’t help. The study estimates that 16,000 children under the age of ten were infected with Hep B a year and that does not include the additional 15,000 children a year who acquired Hep B from their mothers, perinatally. Most of these 16,000 children had clinically silent infections that will lead to chronic liver infections later in life, with 25% leading to death.  The study concludes that routine vaccination of infants will save 2700 deaths a year. And, the safety and efficacy of this vaccine are well-established. And, Barbara offered no proof to back her claim that this was an orphan vaccine in need of a population.

Seven: A few other claims made about Hep B vaccine. Del claims hep b vaccine only spent 4 days being tested before it was put on market.  Ty clarifies that this comes from the Merck insert.  They seem to be unaware of the safety and efficacy testing that is done after the insert was written. Let me give you a little research hint. If you want to find studies related to a vaccine, go do the CDC’s page for that vaccine and click on the information for providers and healthcare professionals. This is where they list the safety and efficacy studies.  The parent information section is written much more simply.  In the provider section, you can find a lot of research information, including the link to the recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization (ACIP)’s document on Hepatitis B virus and vaccination. This document has a long list of safety and efficacy data, including data analysis from the vaccine safety datalink (VSD) and the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS). A great deal of safety study has been done AFTER the clinical trial.

Del also makes the claim that the USA has greater rate of newborn deaths than any all industrialized nations combined. We know from my three part series, that this is simply untrue. Please read parts one, two, and three.

Eight: Paul and Irvin, both medical doctors, spend time talking with Ty about how they believe SIDS is a vaccine injury. The implication is made that there is not enough research done but does that mean they are unaware of the research that has been done? And, are they unaware that the SIDS rate in USA is at an all time low? Infant mortality decreased 15% in last ten years. Inexplicably, they are ignorant of these facts.

And, lest you still think vaccines might be associated with SIDS, read this study. Vaccines cut the risk of SIDS in half.  That’s astounding!

Nine: Shaken baby syndrome is presented as a vaccine injury. This vile assumption is not based on scientific evidence. It is one of the vilest antivaccine lies in existence. It is something they bring up time and again, without reason. “Fortunately, the National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome offers their own, better advice – “prosecutors of shaken baby cases should be aware of this untrue defense and be prepared to exclude this irresponsible medical testimony.” source

 

Ten: Jeffrey says we are going to witness medical civil disobedience on a wide scale very soon. He thinks medical freedom will be the next civil rights movement. I just tossed that one in there, to conclude, because it is amusingly crazy. Or, crazily amusing.

 

 

Remember to think for yourself. And always verify claims before you believe them!

Kathy

 

 

 

 

 

The Truth about vaccines 2, more lies

This episode is sub-titled What is in vaccines, are they effective, and what about polio.

I accessed the documentary by joining the email list. From there, I got a daily email with a link to watch today’s episode free for 24 hours. After the 24 hours, the episodes are available for purchase at the Truth about Vaccines website. I am not going to share a link to the video because I don’t want anyone to think I am an affiliate with them, trying to earn referral dollars. On their website, you will see that they have a referral program where can earn $1 per person you refer. (I have taken screenshots)

My goal in watching this series is to “take one for the team” and blog about the worst mistruths and list in each episode.

The series is hosted by Ty Bollinger. Ty is a CPA. See episode 1 for information about Ty. 

So, let’s look at the top ten lies from episode two.

One: Robert Kennedy, Jr states all vaccine safety studies are epidemiological and they are notoriously prone to manipulation.  Epidemiology is the study and analysis of the patterns, causes, and effects of health and disease conditions in defined populations.  For example, he states, the CDC eliminates all autists from safety studies.

Let’s look at the reality. There are three parts to this claim: A, that all the safety studies are done by the CDC; B, that all safety studies are epidemiological; and, C, that children with autism are not included in these studies.

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A. There are many different sources for vaccine safety studies. In the USA, one source is the Vaccine Safety Datalink, which is collaborative project between CDC’s Immunization Safety Office and nine health care organizations. These studies are published in journals, but the CDC also has a link to them their website. These studies are not conducted by the CDC. The CDC also publishes yearly reports on vaccine safety. Some of these studies have authors who are affiliated with the CDC and some of these studies were done by the CDC but by far most are NOT affiliated with the CDC. Vaccine safety studies are also done by researchers in other countries.

B. Safety studies are all epidemiological.  ‘Epidemiology is the study of how often diseases occur in different groups of people and why.” Thus, all safety studies are epidemiological. This is true.  But, this is a deceptive comment in that it implies that safety studies should be not epidemiological.  I think what RFK means is that there should be a study on a group of children purposely left unvaccinated for the sake of science, a vaccinated versus unvaccinated study. This would leave those children vulnerable to disease, for the sake of science, and would never be approved by any ethics committee in any country. Even this study would be epidemiological. In other words, there really isn’t a good alternative. It appears the RFK does not understand the term.

C. Children with autism are not included in safety studies.  This is simply untrue. Here is a study from Denmark. The implication is that vaccine safety studies are not done on special populations but that is simply untrue. Here is a study from Cuba that included physically and mentally disabled persons. Here is a study from Japan that included handicapped persons. Here is another Japanese study.  Much thanks to Dot for helping me to find these.

Two:  Brandy Vaughan, who sold Vioxx for Merck for two years, makes a claim that no vaccine safety studies include sick or disabled children. See 1C for refutation.

Three: Suzanne Humphries and Sherri Tenpenny state vaccine studies never use saline placebo.  But, here is a flu study that used a saline placebo. Here is a literature review of HPV studies, some of which used saline placebo. Here is another flu vaccine study with saline placebo.  Here is a meningococcal serogroup B safety study with a saline placebo.  Why am I easily able to find many saline placebo studies on Pubmed when these two doctors cannot?

Four: Mike Adams appears in his lab to tell us that healthy people will always make a strong immune response to wild flu because they will immunize themselves. This is simply untrue. Studies show that more unvaccinated children die of influenza than vaccinated, even in those previously healthy.

Five: A common topic, in this series, is that vaccine ingredients are toxic. Not once does any of the so-called experts mention how toxicity varies by dose. Irvin Sahni, MD, claims vaccines have the herbicide glyphosate in them as well as anti-freeze. What is amazing about these claims is this man has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry.  He should know better than to make claims not grounded in science. Parents need to know that the glyphosate in vaccines issue has been debunked and there is no antifreeze in vaccines. A single component of anti-freeze, polyethylene glycol, is used in some flu viruses but it is not anti-freeze and it is not toxic.

Are you beginning to be as annoyed as I am at these lies? I make this face a lot lately.

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Six: There is glyphosate, an herbicide, in vaccines. This is a claim made by many of the “experts” in the documentary but no one discusses the reality, which is that there is one study done by Moms Against Monsanto, where in glyphosate was found in vaccines which use mammal cells. The theory is that the animals who eat the grain which has been sprayed with glyphosate have it in their tissue, which is then used to grow vaccine viruses, and that is transferred into the vaccines. A great discussion of the reality of this claim comes from The Genetic Literacy project. As you can see, the results of this MAM study have been challenged by many and they have been replicated by no one.

Seven: Ty claims formaldehyde in vaccines is not the same as what is made in our bodies or what is in our foods, naturally, because it cannot be broken down by the body. Formaldehyde is used to inactivate pathogens and toxins. Ethyl acetate is used to precipitate formalin out of solution in a gas chromatography tube. So, there is not actually any formaldehyde in the vaccines. It is just used in the process of manufacturing. The CDC explains how some ingredients are removed before the vaccine is given. Just the Vax blog explains how even what is possibly left is not a health concern.

Eight: This is a new claim, for me. Toni Bark and Lawrence Pavelsky, both doctors who are against vaccines, claim that polysorbate 80, when used in conjunction with other drugs, opens the gut and blood brain barriers. Further, they claim, because everything with them also gets into the gut and brain, then nanoparticles of viruses, bacteria, and aluminum are also getting into these parts of our bodies. Larry says polysorbate 80 binds to the viruses and and aluminum and “walks into the brain the way a ghost can go through a wall.”  He concludes that this is what is causing vaccinated children to have autism and other neurodisabilities.

Now, first of all, we know vaccines are not causing autism. Secondly, aluminum salts in vaccines are microparticles, not nanoparticles. Polysorbate 80 is used with nanoparticles of certain drugs, like loperamide, to deliver them to the brain when necessary.  These drugs only cross the blood brain barrier  when loaded onto polybutylcyanoacrylate (PBCA)-nanoparticles and coated with polysorbate 80. But, aluminum salts are microparticles, not nanoparticles. There are experiments underway using aluminum salt nanoparticles but all existing vaccines use microparticles of aluminum salts and those are much too large to cross the blood brain barrier.  Aluminum salts are about 2 um or 2000 nanoparticles in size.

Nine: Ty, and others, claim the amount of aluminum in vaccine exceeds the FDA limit. Ty is referring to a document on the FDA website which refers to aluminum use in total parenteral nutrition. The TPN limit is 25 micrograms per liter. TPN is a method of feeding people bypassing the gastrointestinal tract. Sick newborns, for example, may receive TPN via a vein. Children and adults with bowel disease may also get TPN. Adult daily requirements for TPN are 30–40 mL Water (/kg body wt/day).  This has nothing to do with vaccines and is not the aluminum limit for vaccines. In fact, an “FDA study found that the risk to infants posed by the total aluminum exposure received from the entire recommended series of childhood vaccines over the first year of life is extremely low” and  “the maximum amount of aluminum an infant could be exposed to over the first year of life would be 4.225 milligrams (mg), based on the recommended schedule of vaccines. Federal Regulations for biological products (including vaccines) limit the amount of aluminum in the recommended individual dose of biological products, including vaccines, to not more than 0.85-1.25 mg. For example, the amount of aluminum in the hepatitis B vaccine given at birth is 0.25 mg.”

Ten: I cannot believe I got all the way to #9 and I still am only half way through this episode!  The rest of the episode is about polio and Salk and SV40.  Suzanne plugs her book and claims there was a diagnostic criteria change around the time the polio vaccine was invented and that is the reason polio rate dropped. She claims the vaccine had nothing to do with it. Sayer claims women pass SV40 to their fetuses and he got it from his mother who had that vaccine. Toni claims the polio vaccine causes massive paralysis in developing countries, but it is not tracked.

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In lieu of debunking all these claims, I am going to link to Mr Skeptical Raptor, who has done a find job debunking polio vaccine claims. These all specifically address claims made by the movie, although these blog posts were written well before the movie. Antivaxers like to recycle the claims. Skeptical Raptor fully cites all sources and backs all claims.

Polio, and SV40 do not cause cancer

Jonas Salk is an American Hero

Polio vaccine did not cause 47,000 cases of paralysis in India

Bill Gates is not trying to depopulate the world with vaccines

And, finally, to learn more about the single greatest public health initiative of all time, wherein we went from polio paralysing 1000 children a day in 1988 to 37 cases of polio (wild and vaccine-derived) last year, please visit the The Global Polio Eradication Initiative website.

Remember to always think for yourself,

 

Kathy

 

 

Hepatitis B vaccine is safe & necessary

There is a reason one should not take healthcare or medical advice from daytime talk show producers with no college education: they don’t do science. And this is a real problem when they have some influence among people who do not vaccinate.

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Yes, that is this week’s message from Del B.  He crashed the Assembly Select Committee on Infectious Diseases in High Risk Disadvantaged Communities meeting, this week, in Sacramento, California, hosted by Assemblyman Mike A Gipson. State Senator Dr. Richard Pan was a speaker, as were numerous other experts on Hepatitis infections. Towards one hour, 40 minutes, the public were allowed to make 2 minute comments and that is when Del Bigtree speaks first. He questions the statistic that 10,000 kids under age 10 were infected, not by their mother,  with Hepatitis B before the vaccine was introduced. Del goes so far to imply Dr Pan made this up this data about Hepatitis B risk and that as long as women are tested for the disease, and are not carriers themselves, then newborns do not need this vaccine at all. Further, he makes some pretty outrageous claims that might lead someone to not choose this vaccine for their child:

  1. He infers the vaccine is the cause of USA having “highest infant infant death rate than all other western nations combined” and asks why we are not investigating that risk;
  2. Education alone could reduce Hepatitis B risk;
  3. The vaccine was only tested for 4 days during pre-licensing phase;
  4. The vaccine has 5X the recommended amount of aluminum;
  5. The vaccine wears off after 6 years;
  6. Saving 10,000 children a year (pre-vaccine numbers) from Hep B is not worth risking millions of other children’s lives by giving them this “dangerous” vaccine.

I am not sure why Del thinks this statistic is Dr Pan’s making ( he seems to think the science behind the California vaccine mandate law, SB277, all originates from Dr Pan) but I have taken some time to help Del understand the Hepatitis B risk and the vaccine safety.

What is Hep B?

Hepatitis B is a bloodborne pathogen transmitted through contact with blood or other bodily fluids. It can also be sexually transmitted but to say it is only transmitted via drugs or sex is incorrect.  It is a potentially life-threatening liver infection and a major global health problem.  An estimated 850,000–2.2 million persons in the United States have chronic hepatitis B virus infection. The rate of new HBV infections has declined by approximately 82% since 1991, when a national strategy to eliminate HBV infection was implemented in the United States. The decline has been greatest among children born since 1991, when routine vaccination of children was first recommended.

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(source)

Del’s concern 1: first day death

Del is concerned the vaccine is the cause of USA having “highest infant infant death rate than all other western nations combined” and asks why we are not investigating that risk.  Currently, the USA ranks 168 out of 224 countries in the infant mortality statistics (224 being the best infant mortality rate).  Monaco has the best IMR, at 1.82 deaths per 1000 live births, Afghanistan is the worst at 115.08 deaths per 1000 live births, and USA is in the top 1/3rd at 5.77 deaths per 1000 live births. Looking at the list, there are many countries in the 3-5 deaths per 1000 live births range, so USA is absolutely not faring the worst of all western countries nor has the highest IMR of all western nations combined. The CIA defines IMR as infants dying before age one.

For first day of life deaths, I looked at a report by published by Save the Children in 2013 that was funded by Johnson and Johnson, Gates Foundation, and Mattel. Having googled, this is the source cited by many news reports and likely what Del is quoting from. According to the report, the USA does have a high first day death rate with 11,300 newborn deaths a year. “This is 50% more first day deaths than all other industrialized countries combined.” Poverty and racial/ethnic makeup are linked to prematurity, low birth rate, and high first-day death rate. Prematurity is the single largest cause of first day death.  By far the most first day deaths occur in India, with several African countries, China, and Afghanistan also in the top ten worst countries. Somalia has the worst first day mortality statistic, at 18 deaths per 1000 live births. Being a larger country, India has more deaths but a lower statistic, at 11 deaths per 1000 live births. Iceland, Sweden, Singapore, Estonia, Cyprus, and Luxembourg have the best statistics, at less than 0.5 deaths per 1000 live births.

And where is the USA?  Three first day deaths per 1000 live births. We share that ranking with 19 other countries.  Yes, we could do better but it is not THAT bad. I would be more than willing to pay higher taxes to offset poverty and racial issues, insuring that all Americans have access to good food, decent living conditions, and universal healthcare. That would improve our IMR and first day death statistics tremendously.

The single greatest reason cited for our first day death statistic is poverty and race, both of which are also risk factors for prematurity. This has absolutely nothing to do with vaccines. 

Del’s concern 2: education

This is inexplicable to me. Does he really think education will prevent toddlers from biting each other and sharing their teething toys? Will education alone lead to people telling their partners about their disease status instead of hiding it and inadvertently spreading it? Education will do nothing for women who test negative for Hep B but really are positive. False tests results is a real issue.

Del’s concern 3: safety testing

Del is concerned that the Hep B vaccine was only tested for 4 days during pre-licensing phase. This comes from the insert, of course, and it is actually stated that children in the clinical trial were monitored for 5 days after the vaccine. Of course, we know the limitations of vaccine inserts.  Del, however, seems to be unaware of the safety and efficacy testing that is done after the insert was written. Let me give you a little research hint. If you want to find studies related to a vaccine, go do the CDC’s page for that vaccine and click on the information for providers and healthcare professionals. This is where they list the safety and efficacy studies.  The parent information section is written much more simply.  In the provider section, you can find a lot of research information, including the link to the recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization (ACIP)’s document on Hepatitis B virus and vaccination. This document has a long list of safety and efficacy data, including data analysis from the vaccine safety datalink (VSD) and the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS). A great deal of safety study has been done AFTER the clinical trial.

Del’s concern 4: The vaccine has 5X the recommended amount of aluminum

The Hep B vaccine has between 0.225 to 0.5 mg/dose of aluminum. An FDA study found that the maximum amount of aluminum an infant could be exposed to over the first year of life would be 4.225 milligrams (mg), based on the recommended schedule of vaccines.  According to the Vaccine Eduction Center,  “infants receive about 4.4 milligrams of aluminum in the first six months of life from vaccines, they receive more than that in their diet. Breast-fed infants ingest about 7 milligrams, formula-fed infants ingest about 38 milligrams, and infants who are fed soy formula ingest almost 117 milligrams of aluminum during the first six months of life.” Thus, the vaccine does not have 5X the recommended amount of aluminum. It is likely Del is thinking of the recommended amount of aluminum for intravenous solutions. This is comparing apples to oranges. Vaccines are not IVs.  Here is information about IV feeding solutions and aluminum and here is the information about aluminum in vaccines. As you can see, antivaxers often get these confused.

Del’s concern 5: The vaccine wears off after 6 years

Del need not worry. “Studies indicate that immunologic memory remains intact for at least 20 years among healthy vaccinated individuals who initiated hepatitis B vaccination >6 months of age. The vaccine confers long-term protection against clinical illness and chronic hepatitis B virus infection. Cellular immunity appears to persist even though antibody levels might become low or decline below detectable levels.” (source)  The populations at risk for Hep B as adults are being studied to determine actual immunity rate. The first infants vaccinated with this vaccine are now in their early 20s and 30s, a great age to begin studying them for risk of Hepatitis B and duration of immunity with vaccination. To test immunity, scientists have to study those with Hep B infection to see if they were vaccinated. Del does not understand how this is done because he is, after all, a former producer of a day time talk show. One would not expect him to have any actual knowledge in science.

Del’s concern 6: This is a dangerous vaccine

The ACIP study included analysis of reports of adverse events and found no association between the vaccine and reports of chronic illness, alopecia, diabetes, Guillain-Barré syndrome, arthritis, multiple sclerosis, or SIDS.  In other words, the Hepatitis B vaccine does not cause any of those health issues. The study also mentions the possibility of a yeast allergy connection. “Hepatitis B vaccination is contraindicated for persons with a history of hypersensitivity to yeast or to any vaccine component (92,189–191). Despite a theoretic risk for allergic reaction to vaccination in persons with allergy to Saccharomyces cerevisiae (baker’s yeast), no evidence exists that documents adverse reactions after vaccination of persons with a history of yeast allergy.”  So, there is no reason to worry about a yeast allergy with the Hep B vaccine.

Del also wondered at the veracity of the number, 10,000, of children who were found to have Hepatitis B yearly, not from their mothers, pre-vaccine. This data comes from a study called Childhood Hepatitis B virus infections in the United States before Hepatitis B immunization.  If you have access to the full document, as I do through my university, you will see that vaccination for at-risk infants began in 1982 and was broadened to include all children in 1994.   Before the vaccine was recommended for all children in 1994,  30% of infected adults had no risk factors. Vaccinating only those infants from at-risk groups was not halting the spread of the infection to children. This was because of incomplete maternal screening and a “substantial proportion of infections occurred in children of Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAG)-negative mothers.” Let that sink in a bit. A substantial number of infections in children came from mothers who had tested negative. You got it. Testing all mothers doesn’t help. The study estimates that 16,000 children under the age of ten were infected with Hep B a year and that does not include the additional 15,000 children a year who acquired Hep B from their mothers, perinatally. Most of these 16,000 children had clinically silent infections that will lead to chronic liver infections later in life, with 25% leading to death.  The study concludes that routine vaccination of infants will save 2700 deaths a year.

Conclusion

It is clear to me, in reading all of the above, that the Hepatitis B vaccine has a strong safety record, does not contribute to US first day death rate nor SIDS rate nor infant mortality rate and does very much lead to healthier lives for American children.  What are the actual risks associated with the vaccine? Minor soreness for a few days or a mild fever are most common. Anaphylaxis (severe allergic reaction) is possible with anything but they are very rare with this vaccine and would occur within a few hours.

As always, remember to think for yourself!

 

Kathy