Are you aware that there is a new darling in the antivax movement? James Lyons-Weiler. I have been fascinated with him for a few years, when I found him on disqus comments. He is on both disqus and Twitter as lifebiomedguru.
Here is his linkedin
Are you aware that there is a new darling in the antivax movement? James Lyons-Weiler. I have been fascinated with him for a few years, when I found him on disqus comments. He is on both disqus and Twitter as lifebiomedguru.
Here is his linkedin
On October 12, 2017, Del Bigtree, a former producer of the television talk show, The Doctors, producer of the film Vaxxed, and founder of something called the Informed Consent Action Network (ICANDecide), sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) wherein he outlined what he perceives as their “failure of HHS to conduct the proper science required to demonstrate vaccine safety.” This letter accuses HHS of everything from ignoring vaccine risks to not doing proper safety testing. For those of us who understand vaccine science, this letter almost seems like a parody. Alas, it was not only real but Del threatened HHS with a civil suit if they did not make the changes he suggested in the letter. He also made demands, such as wanting “vaccine safety advocates” to comprise half of HHS’s vaccine committees. The letter was co-signed by 58 antivaccine organizations, including Weston A Price Foundation and World Mercury Project.
After October 12, nothing much happened at ICANDecide. In fact, not much has been heard from ICANDecide in a while. Even their Facebook page has been quiet.
Earlier this week, a notorious antivax crusader (I will refer to him as Pant) who despises Del Bigtree posted a link to a pdf he had created with the response from HHS to Del Bigtree. Pant claimed he was able to get the response through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. The response is from Melinda Wharton, MD, MPH, Acting Director of the National Vaccine Program Office, whom I have confirmed is real. The letter includes responses to all of Del’s claims and accusations, every single one of them proving Del knows nothing at all about vaccine safety. All of his claims were disproven and all of his requests were denied.
This letter is a glorious piece of vaccine gold and when you read it you will understand completely why Del let this ball completely drop, pop, fizzle into nothing, and fade away.
For your reading pleasure, I bring you the HHS response to Del Bigtree.
Are you familiar with the term ‘jump the shark?” It refers to the moment when you know a program, band, actor, politician, or other public figure has taken a turn for the worse, gone downhill, become irreversibly bad, is unredeemable, etc. It originated with the show Happy Days and refers to the episode where Fonzi went water skiing and jumped a shark. It was the point the show was beyond redemption and quality deteriorated.
This week, antivaxers jumped the shark over the story of David and Louise Turbin, the California parents who had been torturing and neglecting their 13 children for years. California Assemblyman Jose Medina and Senator Dr Richard Pan have both discussed online and in news interviews how there should be oversight of homeschooling to make sure this kind of thing does not happen. Right now, in all states in USA, you can homeschool your children without any oversight by any authorities. Most homeschools are wonderful, but this does present an easy means for child abusers to hide their children away. Assemblyman Medina, who represents the area where the children lived, made the following statement:
“I was very disturbed to learn about the horrific violence that has taken place in our community, and am thankful that these children are now in safety. I am extremely concerned about the lack of oversight the State of California currently has in monitoring private and home schools. I have been in conversation with the Riverside County Office of Education, which agrees that we need to do more to protect our students and validate that they are in safe learning environments. I am looking into introducing a bill this year that would provide a legislative solution and prevent a situation like this from occurring in the future.”
State senator, Dr Richard Pan, has also been concerned.
“This tragic situation is the result of the fact that there’s no requirement for anyone to take a look at the kids,” said State Senator Richard Pan, D-Sacramento.
“It’s certainly not emblematic of homeschooling, but it does underscore the tremendous lack of oversight,” Pan said.
All this has led antivaxers to believe that Dr Pan is coming for their homeschools in order to vaccinate all children in California. In my opinion, they have jumped the shark. They have swarmed to Dr Pan’s facebook page and Assemblyman Medina’s facebook page, posting endless comments about how they know “big pharma’ has paid Dr Pan to force vaccinate all kids and the idea of mandating oversight for homeschool programs is really about the government controlling them. It’s been very rare to see anyone express empathy for the Turbin children or provide a solution to preventing children from being hidden away.
Here’s a rare supportive message:
“This is starting to look like serendipitous timing for Pan. Just what if… any part of this story is fabricated or exaggerated so that California gets out some kind of “children’s safety” bill to start regulating homeschoolers, and once that’s done, they’ll no longer be exempt from vaccines?
I don’t think the press coverage is about monitoring California homeschools. I think this is about destroying them, making all children subject to SB277.”
A comment from her blog:
I think it is pretty easy to see that antivaxers seem very concerned about themselves and the possibility that they will lose some perceived freedoms more than they are concerned about protecting vulnerable people. I find that incredible. We have a great many laws which limit our freedoms in the name of protecting others. Americans used to have the right to own their children like property and put them to work, deny them an education, even sell them into indentured servitude. Laws have taken away all those rights because children are humans and deserve protecting. As a homeschooling mom myself, I would not mind one bit if I had to bring my kids somewhere to report in once a month. I have nothing to hide.
And do you see how they’ve gone off the deep end thinking this is all about vaccines? They cannot fathom Dr Pan might be concerned about children’s well-being. I find it troubling that they are so deeply paranoid.
As for Levi (aka Robyn Charron), I did not provide a link to her blog because I have recently discovered she edits comments. Her identity is pretty well known, in vaccine circles, so I mentioned to her that she could talk to her state representatives in Colorado. She edited out the state name. When I called her on it, she posted this:
The paranoia runs deep in this crowd. Check out this video! Someone from “truthertalk” thinks homeschoolers are being attacked and the state doesn’t care about children at all. This story about the Turbin’s is fake and it is all about “big pharma” coming to getcha!
Remember to think for yourself!
More on “jump the shark”
Dr. Humphries is a currently-licensed nephrologist but is not currently practicing medicine. Instead, she is mostly traveling around the country with the Vaxxed team. I have been aware of her antivax stance for many years, back when she used to post alongside Hilary Butler, a long-time antivaxer from New Zealand. Hilary self-published a book called Just a little prick about ten years ago. I read it when it first came out as she was giving away free copies back then. Back in the early days of online parenting chats, Hilary was often found in vaccine forums. At some point, Suzanne picked up that trail. I can recall, back when I ran Informed Parents of Vaccinated Children page on Facebook (I was founder and ran it from 2011-2013 when I gave it to friends) that both of them would show up to chat about polio being caused by DDT, Vitamin C being the cure for everything, vaccines cause all the world’s evils, and how, at the time, Suzanne was studying homeopathy. Suzanne now denies this happened, but I was there. I just wish I had taken screenshots! Oh well, that was two computers ago anyway. At any rate, Hilary and Suzanne share a great many ideologies about vaccines, diseases, and vitamin C.
Roman Bystrianyk is the co-author and all I have ever been able to find on him is what was printed on the back of this book, that he has a BS in engineering and an MS in computer science. There is a little more information on him at the book website, but he otherwise keeps a low social media profile. He used to run a site called Health Sentinel but that appears to now be defunct.
First of all, about half the book is quotes from various other texts, articles, and studies, which is extremely unusual. I believe it is self-published and had no formal editing because a book from a reputable publisher would never have allowed this many quotes. Also, all the graphs are sideways, which is very annoying I ended up pulling them all from the digital copy onto my computer’s desktop so I could turn them the right way and actually view them while I read. The original writing is not very sophisticated, in my opinion, and there are many snide remarks throughout, such as “Millionaire vaccine inventor Paul Offit, a supporter of mandatory vaccinations, wrote a book on the Cutter incident.” I feel like this book was likely not edited by a professional as that inflammatory and untrue statement should have been flagged and changed to “Pediatrician and Vaccinologist Paul Offit wrote a book on the Cutter incident.” The book’s version, to me, seems rather snide, as if the authors are trying hard to portray him negatively when they should be letting the reader judge for herself.
Forward by Dr Jayne L. M. Donegan
Dr. Donegan is a general practice doctor and homeopath from the United Kingdom. She says the debate about safety is discouraged and no attention is given to improved social conditions. She states she was trained in medical school to not question vaccines. The UK 1994 measles outbreak, and recommendation to vax a 2nd and third time with MMR led to her doubts. She started to research death rate related to vaccine-preventable diseases and noticed a pattern of death rate decreasing before vaccines. “We get infectious diseases when our bodies need to have a periodic cleanout. Children, especially, benefit from childhood spotty rashes, or “exanthems” as they are called, at appropriate times in order to make developmental leaps, so long as they are treated appropriately. In my experience, the worst complications of childhood infections are caused by standard medical treatment, which involves suppression of all the symptoms.“
Sidebar: If you want to know what vaccine-preventable diseases actually do, I recommend reading the Pink Book.
Roman Bystrianyk says a book by Neil Z Miller and graphs of death rate decreasing before vaccines influenced his thinking. His experience curing his son of epilepsy “Happily, after a few months, the EEG revealed no seizure activity! Not only was I thrilled that my son’s condition had improved, but the experience had again shown me the power of belief systems. In this case, the belief that nutrients and diet had no effect on brain health was absolutely wrong. ”
Sidebar: Please note we have no evidence Roman cured his son and we do know his ex-wife was a nurse and was not anti-vax.
Suzanne Humphries says, “It would be untrue to say that I ever completely believed in the necessity and safety of vaccination. I have long had an intuitive distaste for vaccines.”
“During my medical residency, I saw many autoimmune diseases and silently wondered if the vaccines could be playing a role”
“The God-given sense that I was endowed with was temporarily replaced by supposed evidence-based medicine and mindless rules, protocols, and guidelines. ”
Sidebar: It is very apparent Suzanne has always had antivax tendencies.
Suzanne says that the 2009 H1N1 flu vaccine caused kidney failure in three patients (her diagnosis) and that led her to be antivax. There is no evidence to support these claims.
This chapter is a reminder that diseases were rampant in 19th-century cities due to sanitation and sewage issues, factories, hazardous housing, and poor quality of food. I don’t refute this at all. However, I would look at more than just mortality rates to talk about community health. Just because death rate dropped does not mean diseases went away. The Pink Book does a good job of explaining modern outbreak data.
This chapter informs us that in the 19th-century, children were working and labor contributed to disease and injury rates being very high. Again, I do not refute this but there were still large outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases and some deaths.
This chapter informs us that disease rates were high in 19th-century. We know that fact. Again, that did not mean diseases all went away. The authors only present death, or mortality, data and not incidence, or morbidity, data.
This chapter is about smallpox history. The claim is made that compulsory vaccination did not curb outbreaks because smallpox vaccine did not prevent smallpox in 100% of the population. The claim is made that strict vaccination laws had no beneficial effect. Some quotes from the book:
“In fact, more people died from smallpox in the 20 years after the strict compulsory laws than in the 20 years prior.”
“In 1948, there were an estimated 200 to 300 deaths as the result of smallpox vaccination, while during the same time there had only been 1 smallpox death.”
“The death rate for smallpox declined after 1872, but there is no evidence that vaccination had anything at all to do with it. In the early 1900s, death from smallpox all but vanished from England.”
Her implication is that better sanitation and hygiene contributed to the reduction of smallpox. I believe this is an inaccurate and disingenuous view of vaccines and smallpox history. Dr. Vince Ianelli does a good job of explaining smallpox disease and vaccine facts at his blog, Vaxopedia.
The authors are very concerned about cell culturing using animal cells. I am not sure why this bothers them. They state “as long as animals and animal cells are used for vaccine manufacture, the potential for infection will exist. There is no proposed end to the use of animals in vaccine production.” Since we eat, breathe, and drink non-human DNA all day, every day, and the human race has managed to survive quite a long time, I am unsure of their actual concern. Perhaps they saw “The Fly” with Jeff Goldblum and are concerned humans will morph into non-humans if we are encounter non-human DNA? I would remind them that is science fiction.
For some very good information on cell cultures, here are two excellent links:
This chapter describes the case of Leicester, in the UK, where some people chose jail rather than compulsory vaccination. They chose quarantine and disinfection. This is now called the “Leicester Method.” Dr. Ianelli does a great job explaining how this worked on his blog, Vaxopedia.
Leicester Method employed by WHO in Yugoslavia 1972 after smallpox vaccine supposedly failed. I found a WHO document explaining the outbreak and how it was handled. They quarantined those affected and vaccinated many others. The outbreak was contained and spread was halted. This was a public health win.
This outbreak was imported and confined to family and contacts from hospital exposures, 175 in all. Yugoslavia had been free of smallpox since 1930. There was a decreasing rate of children being immunized. The vaccination campaign was implemented in communes affected. Vaccination was continued until 95% of the population was successful. Vaccination was then extended to the entire population of 18 million. In areas affected by the outbreak, there was a restriction of movement of the population. “To quote Humphries and Bystrianyk, “even though they knew that vaccination was ineffective, the Yugoslavian Federal Epidemiologic Commission went ahead and vaccinated 18 million citizens. Vaccination had to continue through the end of April because so many of the vaccinations were considered unsuccessful and had to be repeated.”
Notice the negative tone here? In reality, this tone is not found in the WHO document, linked above, which merely states “it had to be continued to the end of April, however, because vaccination was unsuccessful in a proportion of the vaccinees.” P. 7. So, the authors of the WHO document recognize that vaccines have a certain failure rate and revaccination is a necessary reality. The authors of Dissolving Illusions, on the other hand, make the implication that revaccination is a problem. The authors of the WHO document also thank WHO for their efforts and explain that any outbreak of a serious infectious disease has to involve a variety of tasks, including immunization campaigns and quarantine.
They Yugoslavia outbreak of 1972 was extinguished because of a combination of quarantine and immunization. The authors of Dissolving Illusions, on the other hand, refuse to recognize this fact.
This chapter compares compulsory immunization laws to eugenics. This is so completely offensive, I am not going to say anything else.
This chapter tells the story of Arthur Smith Jr who suffered smallpox as a result of smallpox vaccine he got for school. The compulsory vaccination laws in 1915 New York are blamed. We know that some smallpox vaccinees got smallpox from the vaccine. This is not a reason to dismiss the vaccine.
Improvements in hygiene and sanitation are explained and credited with reducing disease outbreaks. As has been stated, it is obvious that hygiene and sanitation played huge roles in reducing disease rates but that does not mean vaccines did not help.
Smallpox decline is credited to improved sanitation and not vaccination. Smallpox cases become mild and routinely mistaken for chicken pox. Sanitation is credited for decreasing rates of typhoid fever, scarlet fever, measles, whooping cough, chicken pox, and diphtheria. They refer to this ear of mid-1800s to early 1900s as “the Sanitation Revolution.” Mortality rates are discussed but not morbidity.
In reality, there is no evidence that chicken pox is smallpox. And, again, the rate of disease (morbidity) should not be dismissed.
The authors claim “the polio story is a haunting one: long, complicated, and ugly. It’s not a story you will have read or that the medical profession will be able to tell. Beyond the smoke and mirrors lie sketchy statistics, renaming of diseases, and vaccine-induced paralytic polio caused by both the Salk and the Sabin vaccines. Dr. Albert Sabin’s oral polio vaccine (OPV) continues to cause paralysis in vaccine recipients today.”
Medical professionals know that low uptake of the oral polio vaccine, which is live, can lead to the shedding of vaccine-derived poliovirus outbreaks. But, the oral polio vaccine has a very important place in history as it is easier to use than the inactivated version. It has many advantages over the inactivated vaccine. It is easier to share in developing countries but, in times of war, there are vaccine-derived outbreaks. This is no reason to dismiss the vaccine. In 2016, there were 34 cases of wild polio and three cases of vaccine-derived, on earth. That is astounding! Unfortunately, due to war, there have been 84 cases of vaccine-derived polio in 2017, but we are still extremely close to eradicating polio from earth.
The best place to learn about polio is the Global Polio Eradication website.
Humphries and Bystrianyk further claim polio was a low incidence disease. They introduce the story of the Brazilian Xavante tribe who apparently had no paralytic polio amongst polio cases in a 1964 study. Americans living in the same area had significant rate of paralytic poliomyelitis. The authors make the claim that modern medicine increases susceptibility to poliomyelitis. “ Refined sugar, white flour, alcohol, tobacco, tonsillectomies, vaccines, antibiotics, DDT, and arsenic had become financial golden calves that led humanity blindly down a spiral of disease and misery. Unfortunately, the paralysis was uniformly attributed to poliovirus infections which thus justified and prioritized vaccine research at all costs. Many thousands of people were needlessly paralyzed because the medical system refused to look at the consequences of these golden calves, gave only lip service to the success of the Sister Kenny treatment of paralysis (discussed later in this chapter), and concentrated solely on vaccine research.”
No proof of these claims is offered.
Humphries and Bystrianyk also claim a change in diagnostic criteria and advent of diagnostic tests, which could distinguish between polio and other paralytic diseases. They tell about a 1958 Michigan outbreak where 1060 patients who were believed to have polio were found to have a variety of issues, including 401 with no virus and 176 with other viruses. They make the claim that paralytic polio was, in fact, mostly not actually poliovirus and deformed limbs and life of paralysis could be easily avoided if everyone had good food and employed Sister Elizabeth Kenny’s methods of physical therapy for rehabilitation. This anecdote is not supported by any evidence Sister Kenny’s methods actually work.
The authors further claim that we see high rates of Polio in India and Nigeria and Gaza because they lack safe food and physical therapy. They do not reflect on how India, Gaza, and Niger all have zero cases of polio lately.
Humphries and Bystrianyk then go on to describe their theory that transverse myelitis in the USA today would have all been labeled polio in past generations. They also make the claim that that DDT poisoning causes similar symptoms as polio. Diet is again implicated. ““Diet—in particular, diets high in refined sugar and flour—has a known impact on susceptibility to severe poliovirus infection. The harsh chemicals used in cane sugar refining are thought by some scientists to have contributed to the synergy between an otherwise innocent virus and the sugar. In addition, as Dr. Sandler demonstrated sugar metabolism and post-prandial hypoglycemia increased cellular viral susceptibility.”
These are common antivax tropes but no one ever explains how polio was found before DDT was invented and is currently eradicated in countries where DDT is back in use. Further, they don’t explain how the polio virus has been recognizable in tests for decades and how polio is distinct from TM. In my opinion, these are unproven conspiracy theories.
The current distribution of DDT shows it’s used in many countries which are free of polio. http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/254912/1/WHO-HTM-GMP-2017.4-eng.pdf
The authors also claim polio is related to arsenic poisoning and syphilis. These are pure conjectures. The authors then explain how polio is very mild in 95% of cases and they hypothesize that paralytic polio had other causes and, thus, we do not need a vaccine for polio.
The Cutter Incident is presented as a big issue but I feel the authors try to use this incident as a reason not to vaccinate and that is not appropriate. The SV40 issue is also outlined. ““How much of the abrupt rise in human cancer rates since the introduction of monkey products into the human population is due to SV40 will also remain uncertain due to a lack of precise research.” The Skeptical Raptor does an excellent job debunking this myth.
Finally, the authors claim the increase in the incidence of acute flaccid paralysis in countries like India is due to changing of diagnostic criteria and AFP would have been labeled polio in previous years. I find this claim simple to debunk because India has been able to track viral causes for AFP for quite some time and has seen a yearly rise for the first decade of 21st century. But, is that due to increased access to diagnosticians or is it related to the polio vaccine? That it might be related to the vaccines is an idea primarily promoted by Dr. Jacob Puliyel, a pediatrician in Delhi, India. His opinion is a minority one and his opinion that polio vaccination funds would be better spent on improved sanitation is not one shared by many people. Most experts believe it is important to vaccinate and improve sanitation, at the same time. Not one or the other. ”
Dr. Puliyel blames the polio vaccine for a sharp rise in India in cases of Acute Flaccid Paralysis – weakness or inability to move limbs. “But polio is just one of many causes, with other viruses and bacteria also responsible. Public health officials also point out that monitoring of cases is now far better than in previous decades.” http://www.bbc.com/news/health-21207601
The authors also fault GAVI for increased efforts to vaccinate children. But, it should be noted that since the publication of this book, India has been declared polio-free. So, something great has been accomplished by GAVI’s efforts. The authors further state that the attention spent to polio vaccine is inappropriate and the billions of dollars spent by GAVI and Gates Foundation would be much better spent on improving nutrition, clean water, farming, and dealing with war and famine. It’s as if they don’t realize that Gates Foundation and WHO all actually do address those issues AS WELL AS immunizations.
The authors conclude:
“History books of the future may reflect upon a disaster with this conclusion: Wild poliovirus should have been left alone and the real sources of paralysis pursued and addressed.”
How on earth can they think the world is not better now? I am flummoxed.
In this chapter, the authors claim whooping cough is not a serious health threat in healthy individuals and play up quite dramatically the risks of the vaccines. Many incidences of vaccine injuries are presented. Again, the historical death rate is presented as proof that vaccines did not save us. The authors also make the claim that there is much more pertussis around us than is documented because doctors do not consider a mild cough could be pertussis. They also discuss the promise of lifelong immunity made with vaccination. The limitations of the acellular pertussis vaccine are presented as a reason not to vaccinate.
They discuss original antigenic sin ““The concept of original antigenic sin (OAS) was coined by Dr. Thomas Francis, who became well known during the Salk vaccine era when he oversaw and interpreted the results of the largest (and most controversial) vaccine trial in history. He explained the phenomenon of OAS using natural influenza virus as an example.” This is the concept that the body responds more robustly and naturally to wild disease than to a vaccine. The authors believe that immunity from natural pertussis is stronger than that of vaccine pertussis. They believe that the CDC portrays pertussis as severe to increase vaccine uptake.
“The reason immunologists and vaccine scientists don’t talk about original antigenic sin is that if they had to explain to the public just what it means in principle and in practical fact, they’d have to explain that vaccination breaches a fundamental immunological tenet. They would have to admit that whooping cough vaccine immunity is vastly inferior and that vaccine immunity has immunologic unintended consequences in the future.”
The thing is, immunity from wild pertussis is not that different from vaccine immunity. “A review of the published data on duration of immunity reveals estimates that infection-acquired immunity against pertussis disease wanes after 4-20 years and protective immunity after vaccination wanes after 4-12 years. ”
The authors then go on to explain that pertussis will be a mild infection if the child is properly nourished and treated with Vitamin C. But, they don’t have any actual scientific evidence to support this claim. Dr. Humphries says that “generally speaking, antibiotic-treated children fare no better than their untreated counterparts. In my experience, they often fare worse. Breastfeeding makes a major difference in how well the child handles the infection. Infants as young as two weeks of age have fared quite well at home with the vitamin C treatment and breast milk alone. This makes sense given that antibiotics alter the bowel immunity and, during the dying off of bacteria in the gut, release even more toxin into the already toxic child.” Now keep in mind that Dr. Humphries was a kidney doctor, so she never treated children for pertussis. And her vitamin C protocol is based on case studies from the 1930s where nothing else was tried but vitamin C.
She makes some truly outrageous claims that are not supported by any evidence:
“Properly managed, natural whooping cough is but an irksome nuisance that will impart true and lasting immunity upon the convalesced.”
“If vitamin C in adequate doses was given to children, and even the youngest infants with pertussis, the reputation of B. pertussis as the devastating 100-day cough would fade away.”
In fact, the Linus Pauling Institue at Oregon State University has research demonstrating vitamin c has no proven efficacy for any virus or bacteria.
This chapter is about measles and again history mortality rates are illustrated but not morbidity. Real epidemiologists always compare death (mortality) rate to the incidence of disease (morbidity) to better understand trends. Are people still getting sick in huge numbers but just not dying or is the disease truly waning? In this book, only mortality rates are analyzed. And the graphs are all sideways, which is incredibly annoying.
A brief history of some of the bumps in the road to an effective measles vaccine is presented as proof vaccines do not work. Then, we get to Wakefield. The authors paint a portrait of Wakefield’s history that is common amongst his fans. They claim his original 1998 study was valid and only pulled because he was attacked. They also claim his colleagues found proof of his original hypotheses but their research has been stalled due to lack of funding. The authors try to discredit the measles vaccine by claiming that because measles virus can be found in the urine of some vaccinated individuals this must suggest that we are all walking around with atypical measles infections. These claims are all refuted by the facts of the case against Wakefield.
This all led the authors to conclude that there is no danger from measles and the vaccine is unnecessary. They also cite several outbreaks of measles in those with only one MMR as proof the vaccine does not work. Again, the implication is made that vaccines do not really work. They are just a profit scam by pharmaceutical companies. They make the claim that the vaccine does not produce lifelong immunity. Honestly, that the vaccine does not create the kind of immune response as a wild disease doesn’t actually matter to vaccine advocates because the vaccine comes with a far lesser risk of complications than having a wild disease. The idea the authors imply, that we should all get sick with natural measles because it induces a stronger immune response, is dangerous.
The authors also claim that the vaccine is not responsible for the steep drop in incidence of measles after 1963. Their reasoning is because not all children were vaccinated for measles in the 1960s then the vaccine could not be the reason for the decline in incidence. They claim that the vaccinated were still getting measles but were not being counted; thus, measles incidence rate did not really fall. They claim laboratory confirmation of disease was not done for all patients with symptoms. They claim that the 5-10% of vaccinated individuals who get a mild rash after measles vaccine not only actually have measles but that percent is a gross underestimate.
“If 5–10 percent of measles vaccines result in fever and rash, then there are approximately 650,000–1,300,000 cases of measles in the United States per year given the 13–14 million yearly doses of vaccine injected into one-year-olds (live births per year US census = 14 million).”
Humphries and Bystrianyk also claim this is why we have a “present-day epidemic of connective tissue diseases, immunoreactive diseases, and degenerative and tumorous ailments.” They cite a study by Ronne called “Measles Virus Infection Without Rash in Childhood Is Related to Disease in Adult Life” wherein the author theorizes but does not prove that patients who were given immune globulin had higher rates of certain adult infections and that should lead to the reconsideration of immune globulin for atypical measles infection. This is just an opinion and no support is provided.
Humphries and Bystriany state that “rashless infection would have led to fewer measles reports, but not because measles was not circulating and causing occult infections. So, on one hand, the early vaccines were leading to cases of atypical measles and causing a different disease (which were not counted as wild measles), and on the other hand, the gamma globulin given to prevent the side effects of the vaccines was also interfering with normal cell-mediated processing of the virus.” Again, this appears to be their opinion.
Finally, the authors believe measles was dying out on it’s own and improvements in nutrition and increases in breastfeeding are the reasons. They make a correlation between low breastfeeding rates in the 1940s and pertussis epidemics. I am sure we can all agree that breastmilk is a wonderful food for infants and I breastfed my own children for 36 months each. However, the authors are implying that all women should breastfeed their children and that because many of us were vaccinated, we are putting our infants at risk by not passing the immune properties of our own measles infections along to our infants via our breastmilk. This makes two deeply offensive implications: that women should all breastfeed and that being vaccinated actually endangers children. The authors provide no evidence to support either assertion.
“Today, because of vaccination, young infants are more susceptible than ever. Scientists are searching for ways to vaccinate them and bypass the vaccine neutralization that comes from placental and breast milk immunity. Why? That immunity protects the infant from measles. This is just another example of how vaccines have created a situation that requires even more vaccines and more manipulation of the immune system. This is financially efficient for vaccine manufacturers but scientifically and immunologically unsound.”
I am sure I am not alone in not only feeling this argument is unscientific but it is also remarkably sexist.
Vitamins A and C are presented as all the measles patients need. It is implied that children in western countries all become deficient in vitamin A and case studies from the 1930s are cited as proof that Vitamin A is important for all measles patients. They cite a study from 1990 of 20 children in California who had measles as proof American children are low in vitamin A. They also cite case studies from before the 1940s as proof vitamin C has efficacy in fighting infections.
No evidence is offered that American children are deficient in vitamin A nor that vitamin A will prevent most of the complications of measles infection.
The authors also downplay the severity of SSPE, subacute sclerosing panencephalitis, claiming it is a disease only in the vaccinated. They cite a study called Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis: Is there something different in the younger children? This was a study of 9 children with SSPE, all but three with no history of vaccination and two of those three also had a history of wild measles infection. They cite another study from China that is also cases of children who previously had wild measles. SSPE is always caused by wild measles, but the authors claim otherwise. They also postulate that fever medicines (antipyretics) and measles immune globulin are to blame for SSPE. I find this claim incredible, mostly because they don’t support it with evidence at all.
This chapter is about scurvy and vitamin C. More case studies from before modern medical treatments were invented are provided as evidence vitamin C is all one needs to fight disease. These are more anecdotes about children who did not die rather than actual evidence Vitamin C has any value in treating vaccine-preventable diseases.
This chapter is about herbs and other “lost remedies.” This chapter is also full of very old anecdotes about remedies people tried before modern medicine. There is no actual evidence in this chapter.
This one is about belief and fear. This chapter is a repeat of all the previous messages that vaccines did not save us.
This, my dear readers, brings us to the end of the book. I hope you enjoyed my synopsis. I believe is is clear that Dissolving Illusions is based on conjecture and not scientific evidence.
Two awesome ways to help bring vaccines to those in need.
Remember to think for yourself!
Note: I just finished a very difficult quarter at the local university, wherein I authored two very long reports using APA style. As such, I am purposely giving myself a break and not worrying about APA-style rules for this blog post. Therefore, I am denoting page numbers for quotes.
You may have seen this copypasta show up in a vaccine debate.
There is NO Science that shows Vaccines Cause Autism, EXCEPT in ALL THESE Government Published Studies which show Vaccines Cause Autism.
Let’s take a look at this list and see what the studies actually say. I will indicate a YES or NO after each to indicate if the study shows vaccines cause autism. I do have access to full studies and will be interpreting those, not abstracts.
First of all these studies come from pubmed which is a database managed by the US National Library of MedicineNational Institutes of Health. It commprises more than 27 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books. Citations may include links to full-text content from PubMed Central and publisher web sites. It is not a list of “government published studies.” The studies are mostly published in independent journals.
This study used raw VAERS data, which is not confirmed by medical evidence and, therefore, not valid. Also, two study authors, David and Mark Geier, have a notorious reputation for performing shoddy science in support of their work chemically castrating autists. Senior Geier, the medical doctor, has lost 11 medical licenses for causing serious harm to children. NO
This is just a correlation between vaccination rate and autism. The author analyzed disability rates compared to vaccination rates without regard for diagnoses changes nor increasing disability rates linked with increasing services in schools. Medical records were not verified. She did not analyze historical rates of disability by comparison. I do not find this study to have much validity. No
This is just a commentary regarding the perception, via the film Vaxxed, that Dr William Thompson of CDC found a higher risk of autism in children vaccinated with MMR. Since we know this is untrue, this commentary is meaningless. No
This study’s authors include Geier senior and junior as well as Boyd Haley and Brian Hooker, both antivaxers also very convinced mercury is behind autism. The study, a literature review, was funded by CoMed, the Geier’s business. What they have done is take a list studies that may show mercury can cause neurological damage and try to link that with autism. This study was written in 2014 but an excellent summary of why mercury preservative in vaccines is not accepted as causing autism comes from the Brian Hooker vaccine injury claim from 2016. No
This is a very small study that compared MMR antibodies in autistic and not autistic children. Study authors conclude vaccines save lives and are necessary but that measles may elicit an autoimmune response in genetically susceptible children. They do not conclude vaccines cause autism. No
This is just a comparison of hepatitis birth vaccination rate and autism. Study authors found 9 autistic children received birth dose of Hep B vaccine and 22 autistic children had not. This study has been analyzed by several people I respect, including Matt Carey and a few other science bloggers. No.
This study has been discredited by many, including WHO. No
This is just an opinion piece about the supposed dangers (all not true) of vaccines. No
This was written by the Geiers (see above for more about them). They used hair analysis to test for metal toxicity. Hair analysis is a dubious practice that is not accepted as scientifically valid. When combined with serious conflicts of interest from study authors and their nefarious history, this study is not valid. No
Full text was not available for this one but it is also written by the Geiers. Their theory is that mercury poisoning and autism are similar so autism must be mercury poisoning. This has been proven untrue. No.
More Geier and Haley. They are again using hair samples. See above. No.
This study is postulating that children with autism are sensitive to thimerosal. Since thimerosal is out of all pediatric flu vaccines, except multi-dose flu, and has been proven not causative of autism, this is also a no.
The author goes through every possible explanation for autism that has ever been proposed, without regard to changing diagnostic criteria, and postulates vaccines must be contributing to rise in autism rate. It is merely her opinion. No.
This is just an editorial about another study. No.
I was unable to gain full access to this study. Geiers blame mercury preservative in Rho(D)-immune globulins given during pregnancy for autism. Given their past conflicts and shoddy science, I am going to call this a no.
I was not able to gain full access to this document but it appears to be a hypothesis that conjugate vaccines may be linked with increase in autism rates, not an actual study in and of itself. No.
This is a paper by the Geiers on all the uproven and dangerous treatment options they used to offer autists before Geier senior lost all eleven of his medical licenses. This is just their opinion on how to treat autism. No.
This is a look at haircut samples from babies, which we already know is bogus because hair sample tests are unreliable and not accepted as valid. No.
Authors postulate that heavy metal poisoning from thimerosal in vaccines can cause toxicity issues in children, leading to autism. They exposed a small survey of cells from autistic children and not autistic children to ethyl mercury and zinc and found up-regulate metallothionein to be low in the autistic children’s cells. While I was not able to access the full study, based on the abstract I do not see this implicating vaccines as causing autism because we have removed thimerosal and autism rate did not decrease. And, this study does not conclude vaccines cause autism. No
The author, retired neurosurgeon Russel Blaylock, shares his opinion that vaccines causeimmunoexcitotoxicity (he coined this term, he claims). It is problematic that he cites the now retracted, infamous Wakefield study in his review of literature. This indicates Blaylock is not using quality research methods in his review. Furthermore, this is just an opinion piece in an alternative health magazine, not a study on vaccines causing autism. No.
Safe Minds, an antivax group devoted to connecting autism to mercury, wrote an opinion piece/literature review stating that “all US influenza vaccines, all mono- and divalent diphtheria and tetanus vaccines, some immunoglobulins routinely given to pregnant Rh-negative women, and some over the-counter ear drops and nasal sprays” have enough mercury in them to cause mercury poisoning and should be removed from the market. This is not saying vaccines cause autism. Also, thimerosal is out of pediatric vaccines, except multi dose flu, and autism rates did not decrease. No.
Study authors subcutaneously injected mice with thimerosal-mercury at a dose which is 20× higher than that used for regular Chinese infant immunization during the first 4 months of life. I have no idea whatsoever why anyone thought that would be a valid comparison to the amount of thimerosal in vaccines in some countries. No.
Study authors Hooker, Geier, Geier and others from CoMed compared neurodevelopmental rates to vaccination with thimerosal. First of all, there are serious conflicts of interest here. Comed is a troublesome organization. Secondly, their funding came from Dwoskin Foundation, a known antivax group dedicated to connecting vaccines to autism. Thus, they went in to this study already assuming vaccines cause autism due to mercury poisoning. Thus, this study has some serious conflicts of interest and cannot really be seen as valid. If there are any studies independent of this group which confirm their results, I would be happy to change my No.
This is an analysis of raw data from the Vaccine Adverse Event reporting system (VAERS) comparing vaccination to reported deaths. Since no medical evidence was confirmed, this study is not valid. No.
This is an extremely small study (n=23) of children in New Zealand in 1977 who got DTP and live polio vaccines and has nothing whatsoever to do with autism. No.
This is an analysis of vaccination rate compared to infant mortality rate, but authors do not tell you that infant mortality rate in USA is at all time low, as is SIDS rate. The authors are disingenuous and lying by omission. See my blog series with actual IMR and SIDS facts. This study has nothing to do with autism. No
This study has nothing to do with autism. No.
This study has nothing to do with autism. No.
This study has nothing to do with autism. No.
Author postulates a correlation between autism rate and vaccination rate. Correlation does not equal causation. No.
Authors suggest measles vaccine may cause autism. Several large studies, including this one, have proven that wrong. So, No .
Not about autism.
An antivax group in New Zealand surveyed their members and did not verify medical records. Not valid. No.
Several others listed at this point had bad links so I could not read the studies. Then, there were a few studies about flu which had no relation to autism.
Again with hair analysis, which is proven faulty. No.
This is about Tripedia vaccine, claiming the insert shows FDA concludes vaccines cause autism. Tripedia vaccine has not been used in years. It was discontinued. And, inserts don’t imply causation. No.
Marcella offers more!
1. http://www.scribd.com/…/124-Research-Papers-Supporting-the-… This is Ginger Taylor’s list of studies she thinks implicate vaccines as causing autism. This has been debunked. As you can see, Ginger also cannot read studies accurately.
2. Marcella wants us to believe there are cases where families have been compensated for vaccine injury causing autism. She links a number of cases but did not read them accurately. Here and here are explanations on why that idea is wrong.
In conclusion, not one study on Marcella’s list actually shows vaccines cause autism. This list is cut and pasted (copypasta) EVERYWHERE. So, now you can feel good about debunking it as horseshit.
Remember, always think for yourself,
The Vaxxed bus is in Washington state and they took some time to interview the world’s only antivax immunologist, Tetyana Obukhanych. She is interviewed by Polly Tommy.
Skeptical Raptor has already published a nice post about Tetyana, so you can read it to learn about her background.
First, she discusses her qualifications and how she has a PhD. She only worked in research labs and has no experience in medical clinics. She claims to have done some research at Harvard but I am only aware of a post-doctoral lab assignment at Stanford University. She explains how she is a not a clinical immunologist, but is a research immunologist and used mice models to study the human immune system. She says vaccines were not mentioned in her studies except to talk briefly about Edward Jenner.
She claims that, at one point, she started seeing “things” that did not quite fit into theory. For example, she noticed mice could be immune activated but they would not develop immunity to a pathogen, which told her that immune response does not necessarily equal immunity. At that point, she started paying attention to vaccine research, comparing immune response to efficacy. She believes some vaccines are only studied for immunogenicity and not efficacy. When she went to get her green card, she looked closely at her own medical records. She recalls having measles as a child. She found out she had a MMR at age 1 and another one at age 5 but still got measles at age 12. This didn’t make sense to her. How could a person get measles after vaccination, she thought? She then realized she had been “indoctrinated” into believing vaccines work but they clearly do not. She started also looking into safety and efficacy studies for flu vaccine and research showing that flu vaccines do not work. She says she occasionally tried to bring this up with the senior research scientists but would routinely be told vaccines work and be quiet. She also told a strange story about a department at Stanford where psychologists are charged with talking to parents of children with autism about vaccines. Tetyana found this odd because psychologist don’t know much about vaccines, except Marcella Piper-Terry. (Tetyana claims Marcella is a psychologist). Tetyana then decided she should be the one to talk to parents about vaccines, as an immunologist. So, she started meeting with parenting groups and it grew into her writing her self-published book. Note: To my knowledge, Marcella, founder of vaxtruth dot org, an antivax website, is not a PhD in psychology. She currently travels the country with the Vaxxed bus and is listed, on her Linkedin page, as a “biomedical consultant.”
Next, Polly asked Tetyana what she thinks about inserts and ingredients. Her answer is that pharmacology is not the focus but the vaccine reactions and immune reactions. She believes vaccines cause long term health issues. She is also concerned with why we need to eradicate diseases, that we should look at childhood infections as have positive benefits. She claims that the life long immunity one gains from having childhood diseases is beneficial in many ways as certain viruses are associated with lower risk of certain cancers.
Her latest project is lecturing about how to keep children healthy without vaccines. She discusses a new website, called bbch dot community, that will be launching soon. Building Bridges in Children’s Health will help parents learn about vaccines and develop communication resources. The goal of the community is to educate about vaccine dangers, the benefits of childhood diseases, and how to manage if you are being bullied by a pediatrician or reported to CPS for your healthcare choices.
She also helps “educate doctors” so they can overcome their “indoctrination.” She does this at Physicians for Informed Consent. She and Polly fervently believe autism, allergies, epilepsy, asthma, SIDS and other issues are all caused by vaccines and doctors need to be “awake” to see this reality. She wants to see legislation passed at the state level so doctors will be free to practice medicine the way they see fit.
Polly asks Tetyana about the criticism that she, Tetyana, is not a vaccine expert. Her answer is that no one is a vaccine expert because no one is trained in vaccines. (I guess she has not met Dr Paul Offit or any other immunologist or epidemiologist who works with vaccines. Or a person with a public health degree who specializes in vaccines.) Tetyana’s theory is that people just don’t want to listen to her expertise. She also explains that she left academia because the focus was too much on sick people, not on the healthy immune system. She claims research grants all come from drug companies wanting to expand their markets.
Tetyana seems sincere, in this interview. She seems like she believes what she has read. What confounds me is why she has chosen to cherry pick studies that back her point of view (vaccines cause autism, etc) rather than look at the whole body of science. She also makes some outrageous and false claims, such as pharmaceutical companies stopped paying attention to vaccine safety in 1986, after the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 (NCVIA )was passed. She says that because pharmaceutical companies have no liability any more, for injuries, they don’t need to make safe vaccines. Apparently, she is completely unaware that you can sue vaccine makers, after you first go through the “vaccine court” system. That is outlined in section 300-21aa in NCVIA. Skeptical Raptor blog explains more about the legalities in this blog post. She also seems unaware of all the ways vaccine safety is assured, through legislation and testing standards.
I also wonder why she does not understand that vaccines do not confer 100% immunity so it is not unheard of for a child, like herself, to get measles in a big outbreak. If she did, indeed, have two MMRs as a child, she would theoretically have been 99% likely to be immune. If she did get measles, she was in the 1%. According to numerous records I read on the WHO website, measles is a problem in Ukraine and has been for years. So, it is not surprising that a vaccinated child could still get sick. Natural immunity also does not necessarily confer 100% immunity for life. As I often say, I had chicken pox twice in my childhood. It is well known you can get pertussis and tetanus more than once. Natural immunity lasting a lifetime is a myth.
Tetyana ends the interview with the idea that humans have survived for millennia without vaccines. Diseases only became a problem, she says, due to crowded conditions and unhealthy food and water. Now that we know how to eat well and clean our water, our bodies will handle infection just fine. The healthy body will “sail right through” without complications. This is a very naive manner of thinking that puts the blame for disease complications squarely on the shoulders of the parents, mostly the mother since most children have their mother in the primary caregiver role. If as many as 90% of pediatric flu deaths are unvaccinated, then this line of thinking says the deaths are the fault of the parents for not nourishing the children properly. I find this way of thinking abhorrent. Survivorship bias downplays real risk and real efforts to minimize or prevent them and distorts reality. It is also a form of deception, in my opinion, because parents are led to believe they can control the course of illness. It is like telling a veteran soldier that war is not bad because, hey, you survived.
In conclusion, Tetyana buys into all the usual antivax tropes and has not used her formal education to her best advantage. She has cherry picked the science to show what she wants it to show, that vaccines are not perfect. This is a real shame. No, Tetyana, we are not ignoring you. We just know better than to believe your version of science.
Remember to always think for yourself. And don’t cherry pick!
For the last few days, people opposed to vaccines have been posting a link to a study called Pilot comparative study on the health of vaccinated and unvaccinated 6- to 12- year old U.S. children. The lead author is Jackson State, MS, University professor, Anthony R. Mawson. This study is not valid and here is why.
First of all, I need to explain what is meant by validity and reliability, with regards to science. The University of California, Davis, has a very good synopsis. “In order for research data to be of value and of use, they must be both reliable and valid.” Reliability refers to how well the findings of the study can be repeated. If a study was done in a manner that is objective and well-executed, then other scientists should be able to repeat (or replicate) it and get the same findings. Validity refers to the believability of the research. How well do the findings answer the study hypothesis. There is internal validity, which refers to how well the procedures in the study measured what they were supposed to measure. And, there is external validity, which refers to how well the findings can be generalized.
So, in an ideal study of children’s health, we would not need to take the researcher’s word for anything. The data would be reliable because all claims would be verified. For example, if the the study claims that 5% of children got colds twice a year or more, it would be reliable data if the researchers used the children’s medical records to determine how many colds they had a year. We would know that the data had been compiled by the children’s healthcare providers and analyzed by the researchers. Nothing would be left to interpretation.
But, if we just ask parents, how many colds a year do you think your child has had, those answers are not necessarily reliable because parents don’t always know the difference between a cold and influenza or allergies. And, they would not be basing their answers on data they collected but rather memories. Memories are notoriously inaccurate.
That brings us to the Mawson study. First of all, you need to know that there was an attempt to publish this study last year but the methods the study used and the fact that there were only two peer reviewers ( one being a chiropractor) caused alarm in the scientific community. The journal pulled the study before publication. Many of us found out this was happening from Retraction Watch, a very interesting source to follow if you like reading about how science works and how studies are monitored. Based solely upon the abstract, the study was criticized by many, including Respectful Insolence blog.
I must take a moment to point out that I homeschool one of my children so I am not biased in any way towards homeschooling.
At Respectful Insolence blog, ORAC (aka Dr David Gorski, oncologist) rightfully criticized the methodology of the study as well as the fact that a chiropractor was used to peer review an epidemiology study. Chiropractors are not the peers of epidemiologists. ORAC also noted that this study was funded by Generation Rescue, a notoriously antivax group.
These are problems. Real problems. So, the original journal, Frontiers, took note and pulled the study.
Now, months later, the study has been published in a pay-to-publish journal online called Open Access Text. Reputable scientists don’t pay to publish their studies. Journals like Pediatrics or Vaccines or The Lancet don’t require authors to pay and they are considered far more respectable when it comes to considering authors for professorship positions. Scientists know these facts. They know that publishing in a predatory journal is not a good career move.
So, what happened after this study was pulled by Frontiers? It was submitted to Open Access Text, a predatory, pay-to-publish online journal, and published this week. And it is being spammed everywhere as a valid study.
It is not valid and here is why.
One: It was funded by two known antivax groups, Generation Rescue, Inc., and the Children’s Medical Safety Research Institute (CMSRI). Both are well know to be opposed to vaccines. CMSRI is funded by the Dwoskin Foundation, who are big money behind a lot of antivax operations. This does not negate the results, by any means, but it does beg the question – what was the motivation for the study. By the same token, I would look very skeptically at any study published by a pharmaceutical company.
Two: Read the introduction. The authors went into the study assuming vaccines cause grave harm. ” The aims of this study were 1) to compare vaccinated and unvaccinated children on a broad range of health outcomes, including acute and chronic conditions, medication and health service utilization, and 2) to determine whether an association found between vaccination and NDDs, if any, remained significant after adjustment for other measured factors.” That is serious bias.
Three: The study design was flawed. “The study was designed as a cross-sectional survey of homeschooling mothers on their vaccinated and unvaccinated biological children ages 6 to 12. As contact information on homeschool families was unavailable, there was no defined population or sampling frame from which a randomized study could be carried out, and from which response rates could be determined. However, the object of our pilot study was not to obtain a representative sample of homeschool children but a convenience sample of unvaccinated children of sufficient size to test for significant differences in outcomes between the groups.” Right from the start, Mawson, et al, admit that they aren’t really able to do a good, quality study. “A number of homeschool mothers volunteered to assist NHERI promote the study to their wide circles of homeschool contacts.” This is also problematic. They had participants promoting the study to their own friends. How did they account for bias? They did not.
Four: Methods were flawed. The authors categorized the children as unvaccinated, partially vaccinated, or fully vaccinated based only on word of the mothers. They did not consult medical records. Mothers were then asked to indicate which illnesses their child had had but no medical records were consulted. This data was analyzed statistically but how can they analyze data they have not verified as accurate? They purposely did not use medical records because they said that would have led to low participation.
Five: The limitations. Oh my, the limitations. “We did not set out to test a specific hypothesis about the association between vaccination and health.” So, this was not even science.
So, what does all this mean? It means we cannot validate the information the mothers gave is accurate or real. It means none of the data in this study means anything, because no one would ever be able to completely replicate it. They would never be able to go back in and find all the same anonymous mothers and guarantee the same answers from them. This kind of survey does not add anything of value to the body of literature on children’s health. Honestly, I could have done better as a freshman in college, in my introduction to research methods and statistical analysis class.
If you want a real, valid, reliable study on vaccinated versus unvaccinated, the KIGGS study is the place to go. Because the researchers used not only a parent survey but also a “standardized, computer-assisted personal interview (CAPI) of the accompanying parent by a doctor,” this data can be verified as authentic. That is reliability. This study could be repeated. Children’s vaccination status was documented. “The questions about diseases were followed by data collection on the basis of medical records in the vaccination card, about data concerning the administered vaccinations and the timing of the vaccination” So, everything was verified. KIGGS is everything this new study is not. There is no reason whatsoever to think this new study is anything but bunk.
Remember, always verify claims and always think for yourself,
Updated2: Other bloggers have been tackling this study and since their blogs are just as good as mine, I would like to share. Please check them out.
I Speak of Dreams: About Those “Homeschooled, Unvaccinated Children are Healthier” Studies.
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.
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.
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!
Here are the top ten most egregious lies from Episode 4 of The Truth about Vaccines.
One: Episode 4 of Ty Bollinger‘s The Truth About Vaccines opens with a discussion about influenza. Neil Z. Miller makes a claim that the CDC fabricates the annual flu death statistics. This is not true. First of all, the CDC does estimate annual flu deaths, but that is not the same as fabricating. Here is a good explanation of how they estimate these numbers. One thing that Neil and Ty discuss is pneumonia death rate. Neil claims ” one of the statistical issues is that the CDC places deaths from pneumonia along with deaths from the flu into the same category.” Neil fails to acknowledge that “many seasonal flu-related deaths occur one or two weeks after a person’s initial infection, either because the person may develop a secondary bacterial co-infection (such as bacterial pneumonia)” or some other complication. In other words, having influenza can lead to pneumonia. The cause of death is still related to influenza, however, so it is appropriate to put these two in the same category. Thus, when the CDC reports 55,227 deaths in one year from influenza and pneumonia, they are doing so because they are related. There are many “reasons that CDC and other public health agencies in the United States and other countries use statistical models to estimate the annual number of seasonal flu-related deaths.” They certainly are not, as Neil claims, making things up.
Two: Suzanne Humphries says Flumist nasal flu vaccine was “very bad and it wasn’t that great before and it was spreading influenza.” This is untrue. In the USA, the Flumist had four strains of influenza in it, making it a quadrivalent vaccine. In Canada, Flumist had three strains. Studies in USA showed the quadrivalent version had only a 3% efficacy rate, compared to 63% for flu shot for 2015-16. On the other hand, studies in Canada showed the trivalent vaccine was highly effective. So, the problem was not the live mist vaccine, but something to do with that added strain. And, there is no evidence to support Suzanne’s claim that the mist was spreading influenza.
Three: The Cochrane Collaboration says flu vaccine does not work. In reality, this comes from one paper written by Tom Jefferson, a physician based in Rome and a member of the Cochrane Collaboration, a highly respected international network of researchers who appraise medical evidence. Cochrane Collaboration is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental organization consisting of a group of more than 37,000 volunteers in more than 130 countries. They are highly reputable but not everyone agrees with everything they publish. And, this particular idea that flu vaccine does not work, per Tom Jefferson, is controversial. Jefferson has aligned himself with some pretty unscientific characters. And, his ideas have been questioned by many. Basically, Jefferson thinks that because influenza vaccine does not work great, it is useless. Others argue that it is not a great vaccine but better than nothing. To quote Dr Mark Crislip, “I have discussed flu vaccination multiple times in the blog. The question is not IF influenza vaccination works. It does. It is the magnitude of the effect and in what populations it is effective that is the question. The preponderance of information suggests the for most of the endpoints above, the influenza vaccine has beneficial effects. It’s not a great vaccine but better than nothing.”
Four: Ty and RFK discuss thimerosal and RFK says it was only removed from three vaccines. They say nothing about how thimerosal is not in any pediatric vaccines except multi-dose flu. The FDA has information on vaccines and thimerosal. You can read the pediatric vaccine list here and easily see that only multi-dose flu vaccines have thimerosal. Tripedia, a DTaP vaccine, is no longer used. Neil says “they” are only saving 15 cents per dose by using multi-dose vials. A discussion ensues about how children are worth 15 cents. But, the difference between multi-dose and single dose flu vaccine vials is not 15 cents. I have no idea where they got the 15 cents but here is a list of how much pediatric vaccines cost. The Vaccines for Children program is a CDC program which provides vaccines free of cost for who might otherwise not be able to afford them. If you look on their price list, you can see the cost for a multi-dose vial of Fluzone is $16.622 per dose for private sector providers. It is $18.72 per dose for the single dose syringes. That is about $2 difference per dose. Not 15 cents.
Five: RFK claims that if a doctor drops a multi-dose vial of flu vaccine, the doctor would have to call in a hazmat crew to clean it up. He says the multi-dose vial is hazardous waste, if not used completely. You cannot throw away unused vials. A multi-dose vial of flu vaccine has ten doses in it. Since it has 0.25 mL dose of thimerosal in it, then it has 2.5 ml of thimerosal in a vial. Remember, thimerosal is not elemental mercury. RFK is referring to elemental mercury being a hazardous substance. He is confusing thimerosal with elemental mercury. The EPA does have elementary mercury spill guidelines. But, thimerosal is not mercury and there are no cleanup guidelines for it. You cannot inject elementary mercury into a body but you can inject thimerosal. Because compounds like thimerosal are not the same as elements. Similarly, the comments by Ty and Paul about how much thimerosal is in vaccines is also based on bad math and misinformation.
Six: Paul talks about how insurers have quality measures, mostly which include vaccine status. He claims this is pressure to conform to standards. He says insurers don’t look at any other health measures. RFK comes on to say pediatricians and doctors read no science, they just take the word of the CDC on everything. Takes a sec to plug his book. He says doctors are punished dramatically by insurance companies if they do not get a certain percent of patients are not vaccinated. He claims “you don’t cross Blue Cross.” He says if 63% of patients are not vaccines, doctors get no payments from insurers and “he suffers a terrible terrible financial punishment.” Shari comes on to talk about the Blue Cross Blue Shield provider program for Michigan providers, refers to it as the “combo 10” but fails to mention this is only for patients and providers of BCBS of Michigan. She says this applies to entire practice so doctors who have 1000 2 year olds in their practice could get $40,000 if 63% of those are fully vaccinated. This is given as the reason for firing patients. Jack comes on to claim that medical doctors are all about money and seeing the most patients in one day that they can possibly fit into their schedule. Paul claims that by not fully vaccinated all his patients, in 8 years he has lost over $1 million in administrative fees. Apparently, in his practice, vaccines are free for him to buy so any reimbursement from insurers just does into his coffers to cover administrative fees? He says pediatricians could not survive in business without financial incentives from vaccines.
I wrote about the Blue Cross Blue Shield program for Michigan providers. There are many problems with the claims made in the film. First of all, most people opposed to vaccines (POTVs) are not recognizing or posting that this program is only for BCBS of Michigan providers and only if they join the incentive program, called the Physician Group Incentive Program. Secondly, POTVs are not clarifying this only works for patients insured by BCBS, with providers enrolled in the program. Thirdly, they are also not clarifying that the program is comprehensive and involves many different healthcare outcomes, not just vaccines. There are incentives for helping patients achieve healthy weight, healthy diabetes control, hypertension control, and more. Finally, POTVs are not sharing that these programs SAVE the insurance company money.
Seven: Ty comes on to claim Japan delays vaccines. A “board certified integrative oncologist” by the name of Manuela Malaguti-Boyle claims Japan gives not vaccines under age 2. Apparently, she is unfamiliar with the actual vaccine schedule in Japan. She claims this is to protect the children. She claims that in countries which do birth vaccines the children don’t do very well. If you read the Japanese immunization schedule, they do vaccinate children under age 2 years. Here is a close up of the vaccine schedule for infants and children under age 2 years.
We also know, from my three part series, that many countries vaccinate infants, many vaccinate similarly to USA, SIDS and infant mortality rates in USA are both at all time lows, and vaccines don’t cause autism.
Eight: Paul says that informed consent conversations with parents should include the risk of acquiring the disease as well as the risks associated with the vaccines. If a disease is rare, he feels it is okay to not use that vaccine. HIB is an example. This is called hiding in the herd. Paul is advocating that his patients hide in the vaccinated herd because the possibility of getting HIB or measles is rare. But, what happens if more and more people stop vaccinating? Then, the risk of getting HIB or measles increases. So, Paul is contributing to the increase in disease rates by advocating people not vaccinate. Joseph Albeitz, an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado, Denver, and The Children’s Hospital put it well: “It bears to be stated again, frankly and clearly. The choice to refuse a vaccine, to “hide in the herd,” is an active decision to accept a markedly higher risk of infection, its complications, the associated medical costs and lost wages, the responsibility of spreading the disease to others should an infection occur, and to choose to undermine the very herd immunity on which we all depend.” source
Nine: Larry comes on to claim that vaccine ingredients cause allergies. He says castor oil in Vitamin K shot is linked with peanut allergies. Vitamin K is not a vaccine and it also has no castor oil in it. There is no castor oil in any vaccines except adenovirus, which is not given routinely.
Dr Janet Levatin claims “allergies were unheard of before the invention of the hypodermic needle.” They were not a known phenomenon at all. She says substances being injected into us are the reason we have allergies. She claims HIB vaccine is made with peanut oil in adjuvants in the vaccine. She says this is not disclosed due to trade secrets. She says the HIB bacterium is similar in weight to peanuts so there is also a cross-reaction. HIB bacterium nothing like peanuts and there is nothing related to peanuts in any vaccine.
Ten: Autism is a vaccine injury. Jeffrey Jaxon comes on to say “every child that has a vaccine injury is creating a warrior in the mother and a soldier in the father. And these soldiers will fight to the death.” Mike comes on to compare vaccine mandates to communism. He says the vaccine industry uses the same tools as Chairman Mao and Adolph Hitler. Both Jeffrey and Mike Adams make mention of impeding violence coming from the vaccine freedom movement. I am not sure if this is a lie or not but it is certainly not a rational claim at all. If anyone is planning violence, that is domestic terrorism and will, hopefully, be treated as such. Why on earth would anyone get health information from terrorists? Personally, aside from all the lies and misinformation told in this series, what concerns me the most is the threats of violence. That is why I make this face a lot, when I watch this series.
As always, think for yourself. Remember to verify all claims before you make them.
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.
Please see this post for the full names and identity of each guest.
One: The theme of episode three should be ” we love Andrew Wakefield.” Because that is the claim made over and over, by multiple interviewees. Andrew is a saint. He should be nominated for the Nobel Peace Price. His work has been replicated 28 times. His work was not bogus or fraud. He is a victim of “big pharma” who are only interested in profit. Please click on the blue words to learn why Andrew is a lying fraudster and his work has definitely not been replicated.
Two: Neil discusses how, if vaccines worked correctly, we would not have anyone vaccinated ever get a disease. Brian brings up the mumps portion of MMR and the current lawsuit about it. These two issues are related. First of all, no one ever promised vaccines work 100%. Depending on type, vaccines have an efficacy rate of 50-99%. Mumps is said to have an efficacy rate of 66% to 95% after two doses. So, some people who are vaccinated can still get mumps. Having followed the mumps outbreak news in detail, I don’t feel we yet know why there are suddenly more cases of mumps in USA. It could be related to waning immunity. What I do know is that it is not because mumps vaccine does not work at all nor is it because there is a lawsuit against Merck regarding mumps vaccine. The lawsuit makes claims that Merck did possible fidget with data to bump the effectiveness up from 78% to 95%. This means the vaccine is still effective, but it might not be AS effective. The lawsuit needs to sort out the details before we can know for sure.
Three: Toni and Tim both claim that current measles outbreaks are caused by the measles vaccine, due to the recently vaccinated shedding the virus. But, here’s the thing. Measles is a reportable disease and CDC and health departments test for virus type. The vaccine uses measles strain A, which protects against all strains, but all outbreaks are NOT strain A. For example, between 2001 and 2003, the following strains were found in measles patients: B3, D3, D4, D5, D7, D8, H1, H2. These strains are all imported to USA. Furthermore, there are no cases on record of anyone even passing measles vaccine virus to another person. There are a few cases of vaccinated persons getting full blown measles and this is called shedding, but it is shedding to oneself, not others. Measles vaccine virus does not cause outbreaks.
Four: The vaccines did not save us idea is a lie. Sayer and Suzanne both repeatedly refer to mortality (death rates) graphs showing death rate was decreasing before vaccines. Suzanne has put a bunch of these historical mortality rate graphs in her book. It is true that improvements to water quality and nutrition and other lifestyle improvements did help lead to a dramatic decrease in death rate, even from diseases for which we now vaccinate. But, people were still dying and there was still great suffering from diseases, until we started to vaccinate. Look at this graph comparing the measles (mortality) death rate from 1912 to 2001 to the measles (morbidity) disease rate.
In this report on the history of measles in USA, the authors found
“In the first decade of reporting, an average of 297,216 cases were reported each year, representing a mean reported measles incidence of 289/ 100,000. In the same period, an average of 5948 measles-related deaths were reported annually. The average annual number of reported measles cases increased to 530,217 (incidence, 310 cases/100,000) in the decade preceding licensure of measles vaccine (1953—1962). Population-based surveys suggested that reported cases underestimated actual cases in the pre-vaccine period by 85%–90% . By 1953–1962, the mean annual number of fatal measles virus infections had decreased to 440, despite more reported cases .
Measles case fatality decreased from 21 deaths/1000 reported cases in 1911–1912 to <1 death/1000 in 1953–1962. This improvement in survival of people infected with measles virus presumably resulted from improved nutrition and medical care, especially the availability of newly discovered antibiotics to treat many of the bacterial complications of measles. It is difficult to estimate whether measles-related deaths were as severely under-reported as were measles cases.”
So, in 1912, we had 5948 measles deaths a year and 289 cases per 100,000 people. In 1953, we had 310 cases of measles per 100,000 people. And, since the population had grown, this meant a tremendous increase in the number of measles cases yearly, from 1953-62. Yes, death rate was down. But measles was still causing suffering to many until the vaccine came out in the 1960s.
This argument applies to all the vaccine preventable diseases. Modern water plants, refrigeration, hand washing, and clean food all helped us be vastly healthier. But, VPD rates were still high until vaccines helped lower them.
Five: Sayer talks about how we need germs to be healthy and if we allow our body to fight infection naturally, we will be stronger. He and Neil both claim having a vaccine preventable disease naturally will protect one from cardiovascular disease and cancer. It is true that some studies are being reported showing a correlation between having chicken pox naturally and a reduced risk of a type of brain cancer. It is true that there is a study from japan that linked having had natural measles and mumps with a lower incidence of cardiovascular disease. But, why is Sayer concluding that children should get sick in order to possibly not have cancer or heart disease later in life? To me, this makes no sense at all and, certainly, the study authors do not make this suggestion at all. No reasonable person would ever suggest that a child should risk getting sick in order to possibly not get sick as a senior. So, this is a half lie, in my opinion. Or, a crazy stretch of the truth. You choose.
Six: Larry makes a claim that combination vaccines are problematic because, in real life, nobody ever gets more than one disease at a time. I am making the face again. Seriously? He thinks you cannot get two diseases at once? The term used for one disease or disorder linked to another is comorbidity. There is scientific literature on vaccine preventable disease comorbidity. Here is a study of children in Ghana having more than one VPD at once. Here is a study from Iran of children getting chicken pox with other diseases. It is rare to acquire one vaccine preventable disease with another but this does not mean it cannot happen. And, it is not uncommon for people with HIV or other very serious diseases to acquire another infection. Yes, this more common people who are immune compromised or living with malnutrition, but it can happen.
Larry also claims that some countries know that combination vaccines are more dangerous and this is why they don’t offer them. He shares how Japan switched from MMR to MR and M separately because the combo vaccine caused meningitis. In reality, there are different strains of mumps and Japan prefers to use the Urabi strain while USA sticks with Jerryl-Lynn. One brand of MMR, used in Japan, was shown to increase the risk of aseptic meningitis so they switched to a different vaccine for mumps that does not have this problem. They still vaccinate for all three diseases. The switch has nothing to do with combination.
Seven: Paul says the 2004 study discussed in the movie Vaxxed shows a 300% increase in autism in African American Boys. Follow the links to read more about the film and claims. However, this is a lie, in and of itself, because no studies show 300% more AA boys with autism. This study shows a rate of autism in whites of 62.5 per 10,000 and 42.6 in blacks. Data published in 2012 shows autism rate 1 in 63 white children, 1 in 81 black children, and 1 in 93 Hispanic children were identified with ASD. Here is the dataset. It is possible that Paul was confused about recent claims made by RFK, but those have been refuted by several scientists who also happen to have autistic children (lest you think they are biased).
Eight: Tetyana says rubella is an unnecessary vaccine for boys and it would be better to simply have rubella parties, the disease is THAT mild. She says pregnant women are the only ones at risk from rubella. It is true that rubella, or German Measles, is a relatively mild disease in children. Complications are more common in adults than the children. The problem is not that rubella is mild but that congenital rubella syndrome is a terrible thing. “A rubella epidemic in the United States in 1964–1965 resulted in 12.5 million cases of rubella infection and about 20,000 newborns with CRS. The estimated cost of the epidemic was $840 million. This does not include the emotional toll on the families involved.”
Thanks to vaccines, the incidence of rubella as well as the incidence of congenital rubella syndrome both dropped 99%. The Pan American Health Organization declared all of the Americas free of native rubella in September 2016. The fact that a person with a PhD in Immunology should believe that rubella parties are a good idea is so reprehensible to me that I am just going to say that this woman must not have even one clue that CRS was like, in the days before vaccines. Before vaccines, 20,000 babies a year were born with CRS, in the USA. That we have eradicated this is astounding.
Nine: Paul says there are no safety studies done for TDaP during pregnancy. He says the vaccines is too toxic to justify giving it to prevent 5-10 pertussis infant deaths a year. Pertussis is a very serious illness, particularly in infants under age 1. Infants are most susceptible to complications and death. In 2015, almost 3000 infants had documented pertussis and 6 died. In 2012, 6000 infants had documented pertussis and 16 died. In 2013, 4000 infants had pertussis and 12 died. It is likely that many of these infants needed hospitalization and probably all of them needed medical care. Does Paul really think that is not worth preventing?
And, yes, there are safety and efficacy studies on pertussis vaccine during pregnancy. Here is a very long list of such studies.
Paul needs to read more than inserts.
Ten: Suzanne says pertussis vaccine doesn’t work and it leads to a worse infection called parapertussis. Neil says the vaccine has caused the bacteria to evolve. This is something antivaxers have been worried about for years. But, parapertussis is milder than pertussis and parapertussis does not produce the pertussis toxin. Even Joe Mercola says it is milder. So, what about the claim made by Suzanne and Neil? This turns out to be related to a mice study where authors added findings to hype their results and this claim is contradicted by many large-scale human studies.
And, with that, I end my take on episode 3. I am going to save commenting on the greater good for a blog post of it’s own, set for next week.
Thanks for reading and remember to think for yourself!
Thank you to Michael for helping me access this episode and thank you to Dorit for helping me clarify a few poins.