Aug 21 2009
A Defense of Childhood Influenza Vaccination and Squalene-Containing Adjuvants; Joseph Mercola’s “Dirty Little Secret”
Fall is around the corner, and with it comes the influenza season. Each year an average of 200,000 people in the US are hospitalized with influenza, and 36,000 die.1,2 With the addition of the novel H1N1 strain (swine flu), this season promises to be more interesting, and even less predictable, than most. There can be no doubt, however, that this one set of viruses will exact a heavy toll for thousands of families this season.
Too often in medicine we find ourselves confronted with problems we cannot fix. Some traumas are too severe, some infections have too much of a head start. Some diseases are poorly understood, while others have no known treatment. One of the darker adages of medicine still holds true: In spite of all our advances, the world mortality rate seems to be holding quite steady at 100%.
Thankfully, influenza is not a disease against which we are helpless. We have ways to limit its spread, and medicines with a modest effect in assuaging symptoms and shortening the length of illness. Most importantly, we have vaccines that can safely prevent the disease altogether.
There are myriad misconceptions and fears surrounding the influenza and its vaccines, most are not new and have been addressed elsewhere, including the concern that the influenza vaccines cause the flu (they don’t), that the thimerosal they contain causes autism (it doesn’t), and that it can trigger Guillan Barre Syndrome (it can3, at a rate of 1/1,000,000, similar to the background rate of Guillan Barre in the population4). The confusion has been compounded by the emergence of the novel H1N1 pandemic. With so much at stake, it is exceedingly important to have clear, accurate information available to physicians and the public alike. Continue Reading »