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Some Flu Vaccine Updates

It is always flu season somewhere in the world. As Australia’s flu season comes to a close, we are getting ready for ours in the Northern Hemisphere. This is a good time to start thinking about getting the flu vaccine, and as always there is a lot of flu vaccine news to sort through.

Mark Crislip has already reviewed the evidence for the efficacy of the seasonal flu vaccine. Like most questions in medicine, the evidence is deceptively complex, and Mark does an excellent job of sorting through it, so I won’t repeat it here.

This year the H1N1 pandemic flu virus will be incorporated into the seasonal flu vaccine, so there will not be two separate vaccines as there was last year. H1N1 remains the dominant strain of seasonal flu, and as predicted the pandemic has simply been incorporated into the seasonal flu pattern.

Here are some updates on flu vaccine news – first the good news:

Flu Vaccine Efficacy

Two recent studies demonstrate the efficacy of the flu vaccine in improving outcomes. Mark Crislip discussed two weeks ago a recent study that shows that the flu vaccine (but not the pneumococcal vaccine) is associated with a decreased risk of heart attack. This makes sense as getting the flu can be a significant physiological strain and can plausibly provoke a heart attacks in those who are susceptible. This study emphasizes the importance of getting the seasonal flu vaccine early in the flu season.

Another recent study looked at the effect of maternal flu vaccination while pregnant and the subsequent risk of flu for their infant children. Angelia Eick et al studied 1169 mother-infant pairs among Navajo and White Mountain Apache Indian reservations and found that getting the seasonal flu vaccine while pregnant was associated with increase anti-flu antibodies up to 2-3 months old and a 41% reduction in the risk of flu in the first 6 months. This is important because young infants are generally not given the flu vaccine – they depend upon passive antibodies from the mother.

These two studies add to the body of evidence that clearly demonstrates that the flu vaccine is effective in preventing the flu and reducing morbidity. The media, however, also like to report about every flu vaccine side effect scare, whether legitimate or not.

H1N1 Vaccine and Narcolepsy

Over the summer it was reported that there were a cluster of cases of narcolepsy in Finland and Sweden. Narcolepsy is a sleep disorder characterized by excessive sleepiness. It is caused by a combination of genetics and environment, and can be triggered by infections with high fever. The appearance of narcolepsy in about a dozen children and adults was thought to perhaps be associated with the Pandemrix flu vaccine, and Finland promptly suspended use of this brand of flu vaccine. The possible association was widely reported – but the follow up investigation was not.

Sweden’s Medical Products Agency (MPA) investigated a possible association between narcolepsy and the flu vaccine, specifically Pandemrix, and found no association.

The agency’s report said six narcolepsy cases in Stockholm were in children, two of whom had not received the Pandemrix vaccine, according to the YLE report. Of 10 narcolepsy cases reported in adults, half had received the vaccine.

The CDC did their own review of the vaccine adverse events reporting system (VAERS) and found no pattern of reports that would be concerning for a link between vaccines and narcolepsy.

It is perfectly reasonable, as part of the precautionary principle, to take apparent clusters of diseases and investigate them to see if they are real or are just statistical clusterings (as Carl Sagan said – “randomness is clumpy”). It is also reasonable, and this happens often, to suspend use of a drug or medical product until a potential risk can be investigated. So there really was nothing unusual about the narcolepsy episode. Most apparent clusters like this turn out not to be real, and so it is no surprise that this was the case with narcolepsy.

The more difficult problem is the media response to these episodes. I would not say that such cases should not be reported, but rather that special care should be taken to put such reports into a reasonable context and to not prematurely and unnecessarily fear-monger. Further, when later investigations find that there was no risk, that should be given equal reporting – perhaps even more, as it is more difficult to quell fears than to stoke them. In addition, there is a subculture that is anti-science-based medicine, and also anti-vaccine. Such episode are exploited for propaganda purposes. It is likely that narcolepsy will now be added to the list of fears used against vaccines by such groups.

Flu Vaccine and Convulsions in Australia

Recently in Australia there has been a real cluster of fever and seizures in children who had received a particular brand of flu vaccine, the Fluvax. New Scientist reports:

Last week the Australian Department of Health and Ageing reported that flu vaccination was “causally related” to fever and convulsions in 99 Australian children this year. Of those, 74 had no other possible cause, and Fluvax had been given to all 66 of those where the vaccine’s name was known, CSL says it is trying to identify the problem.

Unlike the narcolepsy episode, this appears to be a real cluster, and the association with a particular brand of flu vaccine statistically solid. Fever with flu vaccine is a known risk, and in young children a high fever can sometimes trigger what is called a febrile seizure. Febrile seizures, while scary for the parents, are most often benign and to not result in any permanent damage or long term seizure risk. Rarely, however, there are neurological complications.

The baseline risk of febrile seizures from the flu vaccine is about 1.4 per 10,000 doses. This is much less than what would be expected from the flu itself, and so getting the vaccine actually decreases the risk of developing febrile seizures. The Fluvax, however, was associated with a 50 fold increase in risk of febrile seizures from that normally associated with the flu vaccine. Even with this increased risk there was still more statistical benefit than risk from this vaccine, especially since the H1N1 flu (which is included in this year’s seasonal vaccine) had such a high mortality rate (1% of those children admitted to the hospital with confirmed H1N1 flu in Australia died.

But of course this is an unacceptable side effect from the Fluvax, and since it is dramatically greater than other brands there must be something wrong with this particular batch. It is not yet known what that is. This is precisely the reason for careful post-marketing surveillance of drugs and vaccines – if unexpected side effects emerge then steps can be taken to quickly remove the offending agent from the market until the risks can be sorted out.

The same company that makes Fluvax, CSL, also makes a product for the Northern Hemisphere called Afluria. The CDC is recommending that this brand not be given to children under 5 years old, as other brands are also available. It is not known if Afluria carries the same increased risk as Fluvax, but again this is a reasonable application of the precautionary principle.

Conclusion

This latest evidence supports what is already known about the seasonal flu vaccine – it works, but it is not without risk. All medical interventions have risk and it is important to always consider risk vs benefit. When considered in this context, the evidence clearly shows that the benefit of receiving the flu vaccine far outweighs the small risk. The flu is a serious illness and preventing it carries significant benefit.

Posted in: Science and Medicine, Vaccines

Leave a Comment (188) ↓

188 thoughts on “Some Flu Vaccine Updates

  1. windriven says:

    Dr. Novella said: “In addition, there is a subculture that is anti-science-based medicine, and also anti-vaccine. Such episode (sic) are exploited for propaganda purposes.”

    Fear and superstition win out over science and technology every time. At least in the minds of some. Luddites have been around for as long as men have had new ideas and new insights. When those insights, ideas and inventions bump up against long held beliefs of others friction results.

    Religious education of the very young is based on embracing sometimes outrageous notions on blind faith despite all apparent evidence to the contrary. Is it any wonder that a substantial proportion of the population weighs popularly held beliefs over scientific evidence?

  2. Epinephrine says:

    You have written: “The baseline risk of febrile seizures from the flu vaccine is about 1.4 per 10,000 doses. This is much less than what would be expected from the flu itself, and so getting the vaccine actually decreases the risk of developing febrile seizures.”

    But not 100% of the population that is unvaccinated gets the flu, or is even exposed to it. In order to evaluate whether it decreases the risk you’d have to do a more complex comparison, though at a minimum you should adjust the rate of febrile seizure from flu by the proportion of the population estimated to contract influenza.

  3. penglish says:

    I have blogged about the unfounded anxieties about the fact that this year’s seasonal flu vaccine includes “swine flu” (more properly H1N1 2009) antigens at http://peterenglish.blogspot.com/2010/09/misplaced-concerns-about-seasonal-flu.html.

    I’ve been concerned about the misplaced concerns about vaccinating pregnant women. There seems to be good evidence that flu vaccine is very (if not totally) safe in pregnancy; and that influenza illness has a significant and serious impact on pregnancy outcome. See e.g. http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/711576 , which describes 3 studies, all of which demonstrate improved pregnancy outcomes from flu vaccination (by preventing flu).[1]

    Unfortunately the medscape reference above describes papers presented at a conference. I have located some papers with authors who seem to have given the presentations described.[2,3,4] I think I’ll need the full papers to be sure which relate to which abstracts; and I’m not sure that the second study described (by Dr Marietta Vázquez) has been published – I can’t find a PubMED paper which has her surname (with or without the accent) and the words “influenza”, “pregnancy” and “vaccination” or “vaccine”… If anybody can help me track down published versions of the papers, I’d be grateful.

    Peter.

    Refs:
    1. Goodman A. Seasonal Flu Vaccine for Pregnant Mothers Protects Infants. Medscape Public Health & Prevention 2009; Updated 30 October 2009; Accessed: 2009 (10 November): (http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/711576).

    2. Tamma PD, Steinhoff MC, Omer SB. Influenza infection and vaccination in pregnant women. Expert Rev Respir Med 2010;4(3):321-8 PMID: 20524915. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&dopt=Citation&list_uids=20524915).

    3. Tamma PD, Ault KA, del Rio C, Steinhoff MC, Halsey NA, Omer SB. Safety of influenza vaccination during pregnancy. Am J Obstet Gynecol 2009;201(6):547-52 PMID: 19850275. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&dopt=Citation&list_uids=19850275).

    4. Zaman K, Roy E, Arifeen SE, Rahman M, Raqib R, Wilson E, et al. Effectiveness of maternal influenza immunization in mothers and infants. N Engl J Med 2008;359(15):1555-64 PMID: 18799552. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&dopt=Citation&list_uids=18799552).

  4. Th1Th2 says:

    “The flu is a serious illness and preventing it carries significant benefit.”

    The truth is the flu vaccine can cause serious illnesses and preventing it carries significant benefit.

  5. Zetetic says:

    ThNULL:

    You’re a menace to public health.

  6. Sid Offit says:

    Lisa A. Jackson, MD, MPH, senior researcher with the Group Health Research Institute in Seattle, said the main finding of a link between flu vaccination and reduced AMI risk is questionable because the authors did not conduct separate assessments of the effect on AMI risk during flu season and non-flu season. If vaccination does lower the risk, “it should only happen when flu is around,” she said.

    Further, without those separate seasonal assessments, adjusting for the potential confounding variables actually can have the effect of making the answer “more wrong,” Jackson said, adding, “You see this in all these kinds of studies.”

  7. Sid Offit says:

    Flu shots can also restore sight to the blind, heal the lame, exercise demons and raise the dead

  8. Th1Th2 says:

    Who’s the patron saint of vaccination, if I may ask? May be it’s just about time to canonize someone who’s responsible for this “medical miracle”.

  9. Sid,
    You’re confused. Only Jesus can restore sight to the blind, heal the lame and raise the dead. Anyone can exercise their demons, though :)

    Sadly, unlike flu shots, Jesus probably never existed. What Jesus may have done (if he existed) is also far less than the true benefit of vaccinations.

    You should put your faith in things that have a little more supporting evidence.

    Vaccines do save lives.

  10. (Sorry for the repost, my edit didn’t get saved when the server timed out.)

    Sid,
    You’re confused. Only Jesus can restore sight to the blind, heal the lame and raise the dead. Anyone can exercise their demons, though :)

    Sadly, unlike flu shots, Jesus probably never existed. Thankfully, unlike Jesus, flu shots have saved way more lives than they have cost.

    You should put your faith in things that have a little more supporting evidence.

    Vaccines do save lives.

  11. My demons like Zumba. It’s that catchy Latin beat, I think.

  12. Josie says:

    @Sid Offit –I think the decreased risk in heart problems was an observation from the results of the study, not a conclusion in itself.

    Making the observation is perfectly fine, that’s sometimes where new hypotheses arise and stimulate further research.

    Don’t confuse reporting of an observation with a definite conclusion.

    @Th1Th2 –wth would a rational community cannonize anyone? sainthood is an outgrowth of an irrational belief in a God who cares. I put my faith in people who care and who are rigorous about it (medical research). No one person needs to be adulated here, it’s a community effort and we all play a part.

  13. The causes that individual patron saints represent is fascinating. I could not find a patron saint of vaccination. One can ask for help from individual saints depending upon the illness you wish to prevent. For whooping cough for instance you might try.

    Saint Blaise – Patron saint against coughs and whooping cough (as well as animals, wool and many other things).

    “Agricola, governor of Cappadocia, came to Sebaste to persecute Christians. His huntsmen went into the forests of Argeus to find wild animals for the arena games, and found many waiting outside Blaise’s cave. Discovered in prayer, Blaise was arrested, and Agricola tried to get him to recant his faith. While in prison, Blaise ministered to and healed fellow prisoners, including saving a child who was choking on a fish bone; this led to the blessing of throats on Blaise’s feast day.

    Thrown into a lake to drown, Blaise stood on the surface and invited his persecutors to walk out and prove the power of their gods; they drowned. When he returned to land, he was martyred by being beaten, his flesh torn with wool combs (which led to his association with and patronage of those involved in the wool trade), and then beheading.”

    http://saints.sqpn.com/saint-blaise/

    I must say, I do prefer the saints with the elaborate martyrdoms. It’s so old school.

    I guess they don’t have a patron saint of vaccination, because you don’t have to pray for it too work, it just does.

  14. windriven says:

    @ Michele

    “When he returned to land, he was martyred by being beaten, his flesh torn with wool combs (which led to his association with and patronage of those involved in the wool trade), and then beheading.”

    Those Italians sure liked their martyrs dead, huh? Were early Christians presumed to have three lives or what? Some kind of trinity thing?

    @ Zetetic

    “ThNULL: You’re a menace to public health.”

    You should have stopped after the third word.

  15. Th1Th2 says:

    Josie,
    “sainthood is an outgrowth of an irrational belief in a God who cares. I put my faith in people who care and who are rigorous about it (medical research).”

    Richard Dawkins once said faith is a non-thinking process. It’s not surprising to find out that Modern Medicine is no longer based on science but rather on faith. Many faithfuls of this church a.k.a patients are still blinded by their faith while waiting for a single cure a.k.a miracle to happen. Sadly, medical iatrogenesis can lead to irreversible damage. I feel sorry for these people.

  16. windriven “Those Italians sure liked their martyrs dead, huh? Were early Christians presumed to have three lives or what? Some kind of trinity thing?”

    No idea, although the Brits also seemed to have a habit of thrice killing folks, traitors in their case. Maybe the Romans left that behind with the bits of road and wall.

  17. Science Mom says:

    It’s not surprising to find out that Modern Medicine is no longer based on science but rather on faith.

    I guess you missed the memo about science and evidence-based medicine. It is also empty hand-waving to proclaim that medicine is faith-based.

    Sadly, medical iatrogenesis can lead to irreversible damage.

    Yes it can and the profession is and needs to continue to improve upon stop gaps to ensure that iatrogenic events are reduced. What is the alternative? Do nothing? Eliminate the medical profession? It’s easy to criticise, but much more difficult to offer valid alternatives.

  18. hyperlalia says:

    I’m not sure that science based pursuits lend themselves well to hero worship and the kind of uncritical fawning that accompanies sainthood. That said, if anyone was going to be anointed the scientific/medical equivalent of “Patron ‘Saint’ of Vaccination” my money would be on someone like Jonas Salk.

    I don’t know about “healing the lame” but Dr. Salk’s work certainly dealt a larger blow to manufacturers of wheelchairs’ bottom line than any biblical figures I can think of, but I must admit I haven’t done the math on that claim. Personally, if you gave me the option of getting polio, being left crippled, then being miraculously healed by a holy man or just getting a poke in the arm and never having to deal with it in the first place I would take the needle.

  19. Chris says:

    hyperlalia, polio was a disease that many people got without any symptoms. While it caused a great deal of harm because of sheer numbers of people getting it, you might also read someone else’s biography.

  20. windriven says:

    Hey Thang-
    hyperlalia makes a good point about Salk. When’s the last time you saw someone in an iron lung? Couldn’t have anything to do with those vaccines you took as a kid, huh?

  21. hyperlalia says:

    Chris, I’ve actually read the Hilleman biography you linked to (I stole it from a friend, finished it a year and a half ago and haven’t returned it yet…) and I definitely agree, but I went with Sabin for the name recognition and because I didn’t want to have to do a lot of math.

    Polio definitely affected people differently, but I wouldn’t want to be one of the 640,000 people still suffering the effects of post polio syndrome. (Jubelt, B, Drucker, J. Poliomyelitis and the Post-Polio Syndrome in Motor Disorders. Younger, D (Ed), Lippincott Williams and Wilkins, Philadelphia 1999. p.381.)

  22. Chris says:

    hyperlalia:

    I went with Sabin for the name recognition

    Or Salk. ;-)

    I understand. And you are right about the post-polio syndrome.

    I just received from Amazon a book about the rubella epidemic in the early 1960s: Dangerous Pregnancies. I hope to get to it soon, but I have a library book to finish.

  23. hyperlalia says:

    ooops, you got me. Please try and excuse the semantic paraphasia, it’s been a long day.

  24. Chris says:

    I understand.

    I have a teenage daughter, it seems everyday is a long day.

    Though the history between Salk and Sabin is very interesting (they hated each other).

  25. Maz says:

    I’m glad Th1Th2 is around to talk some sense into you people.

    Vaccines are terrible, dangerous things that will KILL you.

    Bears, on the other hand, are fantastic interventions to improve your disease resistance. In fact, the study I performed just yesterday proved conclusively that throwing a perfectly healthy individual into a closed chamber with a bear will always render their cells totally unsuitable for infection by any pathogen!

    I’m currently looking for investors to help me commercialize this technology. Also, bear-breeders. Also, a lawyer.

  26. bapowell says:

    @Maz,

    You should cite evidence for your claim. In addition, if you feel that the overwhelming number of studies that report conclusions counter to your claim are incorrect or insufficient, you should state why. Without doing either of these things is irresponsible; with regards to public health issues it is dangerous and reckless.

    You are entitled to your own opinions but you are *not* entitled to your own facts.

  27. Th1Th2 says:

    Science Mom,

    “I guess you missed the memo about science and evidence-based medicine. It is also empty hand-waving to proclaim that medicine is faith-based.”

    There’s no hope for the myriad of chronically-ill patients inside the Church of Modern Medicine. They will, for the rest of their lives, become slaves since they turned into experimental guinea pigs because of their own faith. This is a vicious cycle and the path to a deteriorating health is a sure thing.

    “Yes it can and the profession is and needs to continue to improve upon stop gaps to ensure that iatrogenic events are reduced. What is the alternative? Do nothing? Eliminate the medical profession? It’s easy to criticise, but much more difficult to offer valid alternatives.”

    Medical doctors should cease and desist in messing a perfectly healthy newborn by contaminating them with vaccines. This act of barbarism should be stopped once and for all or else these helpless creatures will reap the ill effects later. Almost all patients in the PICU and children’s ward are vaccinated, FFS.

  28. Scott says:

    @ bapowell:

    You might want to recalibrate your sarcasm detector. Either that or YOUR post was also sarcasm and I need to recalibrate mine…

  29. bapowell says:

    @Scott — You might be right. But I also had a brush with a ‘Mazz’ on a facebook page called “The Truth About Vaccines” who was anti-vax. If you think there aren’t people out there with Maz’s viewpoint, take a read through this:

    http://www.facebook.com/thetruthaboutvaccines

  30. Maz says:

    Listen, I don’t know who Mazz is, but anyone with a modicum of sense knows that having two Zs in your name is just asking to get compared to ZZTop, which is never good because you know who’s going to win that contest.

    Now, onto bapowell’s point:

    As for evidence, if you’d read my post instead of just reciting the “medical dogma” you would see that I DID my OWN experiment. Haven’t we all learned that first hand experience is the most reliable form of evidence!?

    Onto vaccines — I was formally a major proponent of vaccines, until I discovered my patented Bear-Based-Immunity-System (patent pending). BBIS is a revolutionary system in which anyone who is positive for a vaccine-preventable disease is given the standard Bear-Intervention I described above. In test populations, subjects ceased to report ANY illnesses within minutes of the first intervention.

    That’s right, treating only a few patients with the intervention somehow healed the rest of the subject cohort!

    In this sense, I entirely agree with Th1Th2′s sentiment. We SHOULD stop polluting newborns with vaccines and start bear-treatment IMMEDIATELY.

  31. Maz says:

    You know, I was having a good laugh when bapowell misinterpreted my sarcastic suggestion that Bear Therapy should be used instead of vaccines — then it hit me:

    We’ve come to the point where anti-SBM people have to make such outrageous claims (in order to contradict the mountains of evidence that they are wrong), that Bear Therapy could be mistaken for an actual suggestion.

    I know that this sort of thing happens incrementally, but the nonsense people will believe to avoid contradicting the views they hold is still jaw-dropping.

    Sorry for messing with you bapowell, I was just trying to bait Th1Th2 into looking like a fool. He / she is a clever troll, though, and didn’t bite.

  32. Maz – I have two comments on your radical alternative treatment.

    First – I’m afraid you might run afowl of bear’s rights advocates in this endeavor. Are we sure that using bears in these experiments isn’t causing physical or emotional distress to the bears? Do you have informed consent, from the bears? Do you at least have your test subjects remove any rings, earrings, cellphones and pens or pencils from their person.

    Second – You are not the first to think of this intervention. It has been know about in the faith-based community for years. Many of the early Christians were familiar with the “bear treatment”. I’m sure you’ve noticed that it is often accompanied by prayers (“Oh God, help me, Jesus Christ!” etc).

    Best of luck with your endeavor. I’m sure if you persevere you can entirely stop the vicious cycle of chronic illness and the path to deteriorating health experienced by so much of the population.

  33. *Maz – I have two comments on your radical alternative treatment.

    First – I’m afraid you might run afowl of bear’s rights advocates in this endeavor. Are we sure that using bears in these experiments isn’t causing physical or emotional distress to the bears? Do you have informed consent, from the bears? Do you at least have your test subjects remove any rings, earrings, cellphones and pens or pencils from their person.

    Second – You are not the first to think of this intervention. It has been know about in the faith-based community for years. Many of the early Christians were familiar with the “bear treatment”. I’m sure you’ve noticed that it is often accompanied by prayers (“Oh God, help me, Jesus Christ!” etc).

    Best of luck with your endeavor. I’m sure if you persevere you can entirely stop the vicious cycle of chronic illness and the path to deteriorating health experienced by so much of the population.

    *I tried to post this before and it disappeared into cyberspace. Sorry if it posts redundantly.

  34. “”We’ve come to the point where anti-SBM people have to make such outrageous claims (in order to contradict the mountains of evidence that they are wrong), that Bear Therapy could be mistaken for an actual suggestion. ”

    Well I keep trying to post comments and they are floating off into a cold and dark binany place. Maybe they will return someday.

    But I just had to add how freaked out I am at the thought that TH1TH2 is actually pursuing a very dry and persistent ironical campaign, that these months of outrageous claims are all just a piece of theater. In fact, now I’m almost convinced of it and I feel pretty silly at being so credulous.

  35. Science Mom says:

    There’s no hope for the myriad of chronically-ill patients inside the Church of Modern Medicine. They will, for the rest of their lives, become slaves since they turned into experimental guinea pigs because of their own faith. This is a vicious cycle and the path to a deteriorating health is a sure thing.

    I’m still not reading anything substantive. You are merely offering faith-based handwaving to denigrate a system as faith-based. Circular logic.

    Medical doctors should cease and desist in messing a perfectly healthy newborn by contaminating them with vaccines. This act of barbarism should be stopped once and for all or else these helpless creatures will reap the ill effects later. Almost all patients in the PICU and children’s ward are vaccinated, FFS.

    And what evidence do you have that newborn vaccination is ‘contaminating them’? Besides, newborn vaccination does not support any charge you have made. You are avoiding the questions and refusing to offer any viable alternative.

  36. Th1Th2 says:

    Science Mom,

    “I’m still not reading anything substantive. You are merely offering faith-based handwaving to denigrate a system as faith-based. Circular logic. ”

    No, I don’t but someone else did clearly express her ardent FAITH towards the Church of Modern Medicine when she said “I put my faith in people who care and who are rigorous about it (medical research).” How many more patients will needlessly suffer from iatrogenesis arising from false reassurances given to them by these medical doctors who are also blind leading the blind? Of course, their ignorance level is reflected by the number of diagnostic tests and unnecessary procedures they order for the patient. You know “Too many cooks spoil the broth”.

    “And what evidence do you have that newborn vaccination is ‘contaminating them’? Besides, newborn vaccination does not support any charge you have made. You are avoiding the questions and refusing to offer any viable alternative.”

    If only you knew vaccines are prepared inocula and the more similar they are from pathogenic microorganisms (infectious diseases), the more they are immunogenic. If I witnessed a vaccine spillage into my work area, I will observe this:
    ———
    18. Vaccine Spillage

    Any vaccine spillage onto the skin must be cleaned with hot soapy water and dried thoroughly.

    If the vaccine enters the eyes, immediate medical advice must be sought and eyes must be irrigated continuously with Sodium Chloride 0.9% for at least 10 minutes.

    Any vaccine spillage onto the environment must be cleared with soap and water.

    Protective clothing aprons gloves must be worn when cleaning the vaccine spillage. Any waste should then be disposed of in yellow bags
    ————–

    Now tell me how do vaccines benefit a living creature let alone naive newborns?

  37. Cowy1 says:

    “medical doctors who are also blind leading the blind?”

    and

    “immediate medical advice must be sought”.

    You can’t make this crap up.

  38. Th1Th2 says:

    Cowy1,

    Side-effects, adverse reactions, and anaphylaxis, WWYD? Yeah, go fill-up an RMA and return the product. Duh.

  39. Chris says:

    How do we know that this guy is just not an elaborate Poe?

  40. bapowell says:

    “Now tell me how do vaccines benefit a living creature let alone naive newborns?”

    There is an overwhelming body of public literature available that supports the efficacy and safety of vaccines. You simply need to seek it out — it’s your responsibility to be informed on issues that you deem important.

    “Any vaccine spillage onto the skin must be cleaned with hot soapy water and dried thoroughly.

    If the vaccine enters the eyes, immediate medical advice must be sought and eyes must be irrigated continuously with Sodium Chloride 0.9% for at least 10 minutes.

    Any vaccine spillage onto the environment must be cleared with soap and water.

    Protective clothing aprons gloves must be worn when cleaning the vaccine spillage. Any waste should then be disposed of in yellow bags”

    Mayonnaise is (mostly) harmless when ingested orally, but will kill you if you inject it into your veins. This is a strawman argument and does not address 1) that vaccines are toxic (I can see good reason for thoroughly cleaning an area in which a vaccine has been spilled for the simple reason that in many cases it contains a live pathogen, something that is potentially dangerous to some people like cancer patients or those that are immunosuppressed.) 2) that even if vaccines are toxic to the skin, they may or may not be dangerous when ingested in other ways.

    If you have a serious argument with substance, preferably one citing scientific evidence, then make it.

  41. dedicated lurker says:

    Vaccine spillage needs to be cleaned with hot soapy water! Oh noes! Won’t someone think of the children who don’t like to be bathed, or the ones that might get soap in their eyes?

  42. Th1Th2 says:

    bapowell,

    “There is an overwhelming body of public literature available that supports the efficacy and safety of vaccines.”

    Well, it is an inherent nature of vaccines to effectively communicate pathogenic microorganisms and disease antigens to the host in order to promote an intentional infectious process. For them to be immunogenic, they need to cause infection to the host–that’s the first rule!. It would be wise then to keep them out of children’s reach. Now that’s what I call safe.

    “Mayonnaise is (mostly) harmless when ingested orally, but will kill you if you inject it into your veins. This is a strawman argument and does not address 1) that vaccines are toxic (I can see good reason for thoroughly cleaning an area in which a vaccine has been spilled for the simple reason that in many cases it contains a live pathogen, something that is potentially dangerous to some people like cancer patients or those that are immunosuppressed.) 2) that even if vaccines are toxic to the skin, they may or may not be dangerous when ingested in other ways. ”

    Ain’t that strawman. I can live perfectly healthy without mayonnaise or vaccines. Neither of which is a prerequisite or a need. And why would you inject mayonnaise into your vein if you’re sane?

  43. Chris says:

    Ain’t that strawman. I can live perfectly healthy without mayonnaise or vaccines. Neither of which is a prerequisite or a need.

    Only if you live where there is good herd immunity like a good little parasite, and avoid any cut or scrap that might give you tetanus.

    And if you feel the need to avoid soap and water, I guess that means you are generally avoided by most of the population.

  44. Cowy1 says:

    Th1Th2,

    You basically said doctors are incompetent and then you said you would go running to them at the first sign of trouble in the same post. What you are writing is so dumb that is actually hard for me to follow exactly what you are getting at or what you believe.

    Chiropractors tend to do this when pushed about the goofy things they do/believe but at least they tend to be able to burp out mildly coherent thoughts even if they mostly wrong. Your posts make me think that you have some sort of deficiency in your ability to string a series of thoughts together in a coherent manner, like some kind of misinformation vomit.

  45. lillym says:

    Your posts make me think that you have some sort of deficiency in your ability to string a series of thoughts together in a coherent manner, like some kind of misinformation vomit.

    That’s exactly what he does. If you go back and look at other comments of th1th2 it’s the same nonesene over and over again.

  46. Th1Th2 says:

    Cowy1,

    “You basically said doctors are incompetent and then you said you would go running to them at the first sign of trouble in the same post. What you are writing is so dumb that is actually hard for me to follow exactly what you are getting at or what you believe. ”

    It’s more than the issue of incompetence. You forgot to mention that those troubles were created by the doctors themselves, it’s called iatrogenesis while the patient suffers further more from unnecessary intervention. This cascading effect is responsible for more than 700,000 deaths a year. What a complete mess , isn’t it? An uninformed parent submits her child for vaccination, then later develops seizure. Where would you think the parent will go? To the perpetrator! The doctor can fix the child again to mask the symptoms with drugs, drugs and more drugs! Or may be he can have the child go under the knife to see what else could have been damaged and have them replaced. It all depends to the level of ignorance of the doctor. Basically, at the end of the day, chronic patients are no more than different from drug addicts—they are Modern Medicine’s faithful followers.

  47. Josie says:

    Th1Th2

    Dude seriously…is English your second language or are you just incapable of subtlety, idiomatic expression or even basic understanding of what people write?

    I think you might be the only one commenting here thus far that took my comment on having ‘faith’ in medical research as some sort of religious and blind acceptance of whatever I am told.

    My ‘faith’ is the same sort of ‘faith’ that allows me go through an intersection on a green light.

    I don’t trust a vaccine because an anonymous worker at a hospital told me to. I trust it because I am familiar with the scientific method, with educational requirements of medical professionals and with history.

    Yes, I have faith that as a whole there is enough rigor of study, honesty, checks via peer review and determinors of efficacy via clinical study –ie does the thing work or doesn’t it, that a vaccine coming through such a process will be beneficial for my health and the health of those around me.

    Your life must truly suck if you don’t have that kind of faith.

    You can’t trust oncoming traffic to not plow into you, you can’t trust the cashier at the supermarket to charge you the correct price for your organic tofurky you can’t even trust that your organic tofurky is organic or that it isn’t actually ground up spider meat with fillers.

    As for your deteriorating health comment…yeah, it’s called death. We’re all going there eventually. If you want to get there faster with the help of a vaccine preventable illness you go right ahead.

  48. Th1Th2 says:

    Josie,

    “I think you might be the only one commenting here thus far that took my comment on having ‘faith’ in medical research as some sort of religious and blind acceptance of whatever I am told.”

    You don’t have to resort to ad hom, it’s useless. Wiki proves that you are completely misguided with regards to your own definition of faith.

    “As with trust, faith involves a concept of future events or outcomes, and is used conversely for a belief “not resting on logical proof or material evidence.”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faith

    Amen.

  49. Cowy1 says:

    Th1Th2,

    Seriously dude, put out some logical proof or kindly put a lid on it. Spit out a coherent, rational theory of how you think the immune system works and responds to our everyday environment instead of constantly changing what you’re talking about.

    And do it on a cellular level please, vague generalities would only make you look less informed (which, given your previous posts here, would be hard to do).

  50. Th1Th2 says:

    Cowy1,

    FYI, the human immune system does not begin at the level of cellular-humoral complex. There are other protective barriers to infections that comes above it even before an infection could set in. Unfortunately, vaccine apologists know only one thing: how to bypass these barriers using a syringe and cause infections.

  51. nybgrus says:

    Th1Th2 and Sid Offit are both completely inane trolls. We all know this. So my question is, why do we continue to bother pandering to them? In a previous SBM article on the pertussis outbreak Sid tried to claim that outbreak was no bigger than any normal cyclical outbreak, that it was not lack of vaccination in children causing the issue, and that the season was “almost over” and the numbers didn’t support the claims. He even pulled an article from the CDC to back up his claims – which was 3 months old. When called on that, he pulled up new data and still stuck to his guns, clearly without have read the CDC data. I pulled up the newest data, wrote up an analysis that showed a very strong indication that it was, in fact, unvaccinated white children that were the major factor in this outbreak, that adults not getting a booster was not a factor, that illegal immigrants bringing the disease from Mexico was also not a factor, and that there was, definitely, a MAJOR spike in the disease. I even showed how his assertion that “the season was almost over” could in now way be supported by the data. Just look here. Never managed to get a response from Sid about it. Anything you want to say about it here bucko?

    Th1Th2 – I am so tempted to sit here and continue this refutation and keep showing you how you are wrong (just like Sid) such as how vaccination does NOT cause infection (and in many cases CANNOT cause infection, as in the cases of tetanus and diptheria vaccines). I could toss up article after article – better stuff than Wikipedia and Dr. Google (yes, such things exist, I know shocking, right?) for each and every point. As could pretty much anyone on this blog (and they have been). But why waste my time? I have learned from debating creationists, religious fundamentalists, young earthers, and pseudoscience hawkers that they all share one fundamental characteristic – an amazing ability to ignore, deny, self delude, and continue finding new ways to nitpick irrelevant esoteria thinking that is somehow an argument. Gorski said it best – they are the Black Knight. Ad hominem attacks are not valid only in cases disputing evidence – the premise being that the personal attributes of the evidentiary proponent in no way alters the veracity of the evidence at hand. However, Sid and Th1Th2 are not presenting evidence. They are presenting skewed interpretation, half-truths, outright lies, and pure opinion and speculation – and doing so in an internally contradictory manner (as Cowy1 kindly pointed out). I would argue that while still poor form, ad hominem is no longer a fallacy of debate in this instance.

    So the question, fellow scientific thinkers, is how does one deal with someone the likes of Sid and Th1Th2? I suggest the same way you deal with the Black Knight: You walk around his stump of a torso and continue on while he shouts how he has won the day.

    I’m open to comments to convince me why (on this forum, not in the public and the media) it is important we take the time and effort to combat such inane and useless drivel.

  52. Cowy1 says:

    That was the same evasive crap.

    Assuming you brush you teeth, have ever been scratched or cut or have taken a dump you’ve had transient bacteremia. How does your body handle that?

  53. Chris says:

    Maybe Th1Th2 is not a Poe, but a computer program that spits out random words that are kinda sorta related to the topic. Perhaps a troll version of the Automatic Computer Science Paper Generator.

  54. Th1Th2 says:

    Cowy1,

    “Assuming you brush you teeth, have ever been scratched or cut or have taken a dump you’ve had transient bacteremia. How does your body handle that?”

    It depends. If your intention and reason why you have to brush your teeth is to promote infection such as bacteremia then there are better and more effective way on how to do it. You could have used a steel brush instead a soft-bristle toothbrush and scrub them against your teeth and gums until you bleed heavily. Fortunately for me, that is not my intention and I don’t get sick every time I brush my teeth, do you?

    May be you could used a better analogy next time.

  55. Chris says:

    Definitely a troll bot.

  56. Cowy1 says:

    “If your intention and reason why you have to brush your teeth is to promote infection such as bacteremia then there are better and more effective way on how to do it. You could have used a steel brush instead a soft-bristle toothbrush and scrub them against your teeth and gums until you bleed heavily. Fortunately for me, that is not my intention and I don’t get sick every time I brush my teeth, do you?”

    At least now I’m sure you have no idea what you are talking about. Since you’ve taken a crap before, and created microdamage in your rectum via the act of taking a crap, you’ve had bacterial invasion beyond a mucosal/skin barrier that has likely entered the bloodstream at some point hence my use of the term bacteremia. Clearly, since we don’t all get sick when we brush our teeth, our bodies must be doing something to stop the infection from taking hold.

    Can you explain what that is on a cellular level (because getting deeper than that would surely be too difficult). If you can’t please take yourself back to the kids table and leave this “complicated” stuff to the adults.

  57. Th1Th2 says:

    Cowy1,

    “At least now I’m sure you have no idea what you are talking about. Since you’ve taken a crap before, and created microdamage in your rectum via the act of taking a crap, you’ve had bacterial invasion beyond a mucosal/skin barrier that has likely entered the bloodstream at some point hence my use of the term bacteremia.”

    Do you diagnose yourself every time you take a dump? For goodness sake, why don’t you go ahead and take a series of blood cultures and come back here if you are really bacteremic. But until the results are in, may be you can start off with empiric antibiotics. Oh BTW, I have a better idea, why don’t you shut down your rectum and wait until you develop toxemia, septicemia and encephalopathy. You see that’s one way how to avoid microcuts in your precious rectum.

    “Clearly, since we don’t all get sick when we brush our teeth, our bodies must be doing something to stop the infection from taking hold.”

    Or may be you’re doing “something” to prevent oral cavities? Hello!

    “Can you explain what that is on a cellular level (because getting deeper than that would surely be too difficult). If you can’t please take yourself back to the kids table and leave this “complicated” stuff to the adults”

    Tell me first on how you plan to infect me then I will explain it to you at the cellular level. But until then, I will stay away from any infectious sources like vaccines and contagious individuals.

  58. squirrelelite says:

    @Th1Th2,

    It is hardly necessary to bother to reply to your comments because they convict you of obfuscation and obscurantism with each comment you post.

    Nevertheless, I will add my two bits worth.

    You can get infected without active, intentional intervention by an outside agent. It happens quite often in the routine interactions between your body and the external environment, or even the internal environment in the case of eliminating fecal matter.

    And, you don’t have to diagnose the infection for it to exist. You don’t have to believe in it either. You may not even notice it.

    Because your body has evolved built-in mechanisms for dealing with it. One of the most critical of those mechanisms is your immune system, which recognizes these organisms and acts to eliminate them.

    Twisting definitions to try to argue this process out of existence only allows you to continue pretending to yourself. It doesn’t convince anyone.

  59. Chris says:

    Here is a description of Th1Th2′s style:

    How did Th1Th2 (from the comments in this post) learn about immunology? By putting an immunology textbook into a food blender and then reading the results?

    Which reminded me of the Computer Science Paper Generator. So either he/she is a troll bot programmed to post inane comments, or simply a very deluded person who does not understand what she/he reads and responds with very distorted versions of some kind of reality.

  60. Th1Th2 says:

    nybgrus,

    “I am so tempted to sit here and continue this refutation and keep showing you how you are wrong (just like Sid) such as how vaccination does NOT cause infection (and in many cases CANNOT cause infection, as in the cases of tetanus and diptheria vaccines).”

    A vaccine that is locked up in the stockpile cabinet CANNOT cause infection just like an infected child placed in strict seclusion CANNOT cause transmission to others. The act of vaccine administration itself is the initial stage of the infection process in which KNOWN biological components and contaminants from diseases are being introduced and transmitted into the body in an unrestricted manner especially in areas which are sterile like the muscle. So if you want to be infected, get exposed.

    The toxic nature of diphtheriae and tetanus is attributed to the presence of bacterial toxins—the same toxins you will find in the vaccine, only in weakened state (toxoid).

  61. Th1Th2 says:

    squirellelite,

    “You can get infected without active, intentional intervention by an outside agent. It happens quite often in the routine interactions between your body and the external environment,”

    Right, a vaccine stored in the physician’s cabinet cannot infect me since I am 10 miles away from the clinic, unless of course I am willing to go there and be exposed. You’re saying?

    “or even the internal environment in the case of eliminating fecal matter.”

    The excretory system is a system composed of involuntary processes of detoxification to prevent endogenous infection that could harm the body. Unless, you’re constipated, straining too hard, etc, the process itself is innocuous. Shouldn’t you be worried about OPV administration itself rather than the irrational fear of defecating? Because in the former, children are taking in live viruses as opposed to avoiding them. How funny, children are taught not to eat with dirty hands or any crap but somehow they find it easy to acquire poliovirus for as long it is placed on sugar cubes. Sweet.

  62. Th1Th2 says:

    squirrelelite,

    “And, you don’t have to diagnose the infection for it to exist. You don’t have to believe in it either. You may not even notice it.”

    If there’s anyone in this world that makes the worst diagnostic decisions of any kind without contest are the doctors. They are so ignorant they don’t even know that newborns are sterile, otherwise, there’s no reason for them to make them filthy thru inoculation.

    “Because your body has evolved built-in mechanisms for dealing with it. One of the most critical of those mechanisms is your immune system, which recognizes these organisms and acts to eliminate them.”

    There are other essential factors that provide “immunity” without the involvement of the immune system per se. Examples of these are the distance from infectious source, the time and length of exposure and the use of protective shielding.

    Remember, I am 10 miles away from the source of infection.

  63. squirrelelite says:

    @Th1Th2,

    Humans, and lots of other animal and plant species, were getting infected for millennia before people finally developed the tools and knowledge to figure out what caused these diseases and developed techniques like vaccination to protect against getting them.

    They had many strange ideas about what caused the diseases but a lot of people got sick and died from the diseases anyway.

  64. Th1Th2 says:

    squirrelelite,

    Seriously, the word “protection” clearly is the opposite of what vaccines do. If the host cannot even protect himself from the invasion of killed/inactivated/dead microbial/viral components, I don’t know what live microorganisms in vaccines can further do. You see, you’re not doing humans any favor if you’re just re-inventing infectious diseases.

  65. Cowy1 says:

    “anyone in this world that makes the worst diagnostic decisions of any kind without contest are the doctors.”

    But you’ll run right to them as soon as you have a problem as you conceded in an earlier post.

    I think you must be some kind of self-help, whole foods nut who attended Google U and has zero context for the things you read about. If you had any idea about the nature of the things you are talking about you’d realize how stupid they are. You have infected yourself pretty much every day by brushing your teeth (with a soft brush) or even eating non-mushy food by creating tiny tears in the mucosal tissue of your oral cavity and esophagus. The infectious bacteria that reside in these areas get into your body daily, yet you (and most other people) rarely get sick. Explain to me why, with appropriate cellular-level detail, we rarely get sick despite constantly having bacterial invasion beyond the passive barrier systems.

  66. Chris says:

    Cowy1, we actually have ten times more bacteria in our bodies than cells. Several of them we need to actually digest our food.

    But sometimes they go rogue, and there are some that create toxins that are hazardous (like tetanus, Hib, diphtheria.. etc). Do you think Th1Th2 would know the difference between the two types?

  67. Cowy1 says:

    Chris,

    That’s actually some neat trivia and no, I don’t think it would. I believe my previous assessment about the ignorant but well-meaning Google U graduate is probably correct.

    Hell, what I’m asking isn’t even that complicated, at least if you’ve spent any time actually learning how the immune system works.

  68. Th1Th2 says:

    Cowy1,

    “But you’ll run right to them as soon as you have a problem as you conceded in an earlier post. ”

    I never conceded anything. I was referring to the faithfuls who belong to the Church of Modern Medicine e.g. those who continue put their faith and health in the hands of their doctor only to become one of the more than 700,000 souls that are wasted every year from iatrogenesis (doctor-induced deaths). I don’t belong to that ‘religion’ and I don’t even take any medication whatsoever, so “running’ right to them for an antidote is irrelevant.

    “You have infected yourself pretty much every day by brushing your teeth (with a soft brush) or even eating non-mushy food by creating tiny tears in the mucosal tissue of your oral cavity and esophagus. The infectious bacteria that reside in these areas get into your body daily, yet you (and most other people) rarely get sick.”

    You’re somewhat confused to differentiate normal flora from pathogenic microorganisms. The reason people don’t get sick is because there is no pathogenic microorganism/s that could possibly cause the infectious disease. Similarly, people don’t get tetanus unless C. tetani is present. But hey, patients get free toxins anyway because doctors are so ignorant that they always shoot in the dark.

    “Explain to me why, with appropriate cellular-level detail, we rarely get sick despite constantly having bacterial invasion beyond the passive barrier systems.”

    It’s because of the restrictive nature and mechanism of the innate immune system, that’s why. Vaccines,inherently, do more damage “beyond the passive barrier system”.

  69. Th1Th2 says:

    Chris,

    “But sometimes they go rogue, and there are some that create toxins that are hazardous (like tetanus, Hib, diphtheria.. etc). Do you think Th1Th2 would know the difference between the two types?”

    The Hib does NOT produce any toxins whatsoever. Please revise it while it’s still early.

  70. Chris says:

    So, I misspoke. Big freaking deal. It is still dangerous to very young children.

    So you now support the Hib vaccine. Good for you! You are making progress.

  71. Th1Th2 says:

    First, Do No Harm

  72. Chris says:

    Hmmm… that is an interesting notion. I am supposed to correct my error, but Th1Th2 does not have to revise any of his/her rather flaky beliefs.

    Nice double standard you have there, troll bot.

  73. Chris says:

    Oh, didn’t notice the non-answer. Do you mind telling the harm from the Hib vaccine versus the disease? Remember that several children have died from it in the USA in the past couple of years (partly due to a vaccine shortage and those who have a Google U. education and did not vaccinate their children).

    Come on… put up or shut up. Stop the pseudo hand waving of sciencey word, and give the real studies that show the vaccine has caused real harm when compared to the harm to toddlers who actually got the disease.

  74. Th1Th2 says:

    Chris,

    “Do you mind telling the harm from the Hib vaccine versus the disease? Remember that several children have died from it in the USA in the past couple of years (partly due to a vaccine shortage and those who have a Google U. education and did not vaccinate their children).”

    Putting harm onto children can never be an option. Your use of the “lesser of two evils” principle does not justify any benefit whatsoever. They only promote and propagate infection.

    I have never encountered a hospital that records mortality rate for the unvaccinated let alone worked in a ward or ICU which is solely for the unvaccinated. I hope that “several” Hib deaths is more than the 700,000 deaths for just patronizing Modern Medicine.

    “Come on… put up or shut up. Stop the pseudo hand waving of sciencey word, and give the real studies that show the vaccine has caused real harm when compared to the harm to toddlers who actually got the disease.”

    The real question is how do you plan to infect a naive child with Hib? You know they are not guinea pigs right?

  75. weing says:

    Th1,

    I confess. Woe is I. I gave flu shots to 40-50 people per morning this past week. Will you ever forgive me? I hope not!

  76. weing says:

    Th1,

    I confess. Woe is I. I gave flu shots to 40-50 people per morning this past week. Will you ever forgive me? I hope not!

  77. Chris says:

    Troll bot:

    The real question is how do you plan to infect a naive child with Hib?

    What makes a naive child? Is that before birth or after birth… where the child passes past the vagina and gets its first dose of maternal flora? How about the first time to the breast where it gets another dose of maternal flora? Some of which might be Hib.

    I don’t think it is the child who is naive in this conversation.

    Okay, you think you know immunology… how exactly does using the itty bitty bits from the coating of the bacteria cause an infection? Especially from a bacteria that is so ubiquitous that almost a century ago it was considered the cause of the 1918 influenza pandemic (hence the not so accurate name).

    Show us the evidence that the sugar from the bacterial coating causes an Hib invective, and you will be taken seriously. Until then you have not answered the question. Tell us exactly why using the vaccine is worse than letting a child become permanently disabled or killed from the actual disease?

    Now I understand Thing1Thing2… she/he does not doing any kind of medical intervention. He/she will not ever tell us which is better: the vaccine or the disease.

    It must be some kind of “our precious bodily fluids” stuff. He/she would rather see a baby die from pertussis or Hib because that is the “natural” option, instead of getting “teh ebil” vaccine. Especially with this idiotic statement:

    more than the 700,000 deaths for just patronizing Modern Medicine.

    Hey, troll bot, do you have a reference for that number or did it come from some faulty memory chip?

  78. Cowy1 says:

    Chris,

    Quacks like to reference that 700,000 deaths number as a way to validate their kooky theories. I’ve never seen the primary research for it so it seems a little dubious to me.

    Besides, what they don’t think about it how many more would die if we got rid of medicine altogether. Easily, within a year, the number would top 10million.

  79. Chris says:

    I now figure that Th1Th2 is a total anti-medicine troll bot, and reminds me of John Scudamore of whale.to, the target of Scopie’s Law. Or one of those whose religion thinks nature should take its course and babies/children who die from vaccine preventable disease somehow deserved their fate.

  80. I prefer to think of him/her as an incredibly persistent satirical poster* and respond along those lines. If nothing else, it’s more fun.

    *I understand this is a matter of personal preference.

  81. Th1Th2 says:

    Chris,

    “What makes a naive child? Is that before birth or after birth… where the child passes past the vagina and gets its first dose of maternal flora? How about the first time to the breast where it gets another dose of maternal flora? Some of which might be Hib.”

    The child is naive for as long as his blood, brain, CSF, and muscles remain sterile, that is, free of any microorganisms including those “itty bitty bits”. For goodness sake, why do you always oppose natural childbirth and breastfeeding. Your irrational fear that there might be Hib in there is unfounded. You don’t even know how to differentiate indigenous flora from pathogenic microorganisms. The presence of the normal flora is essential to the child because it provides protection and bacterial antagonism against pathogens.

    “Okay, you think you know immunology… how exactly does using the itty bitty bits from the coating of the bacteria cause an infection?”

    Easy. Put them on a syringe, grab a naive child, and stick the needle and release those “itty bitty bits” (trademark) to a sterile area like the muscle. Your immune system is actively securing and guarding places which should be maintained sterile but the doctors would just f@#$% it up like that and create a mess. If you can’t even protect yourself from those “itty bitty bits” from entering the body, I don’t what else to tell you.

    “Show us the evidence that the sugar from the bacterial coating causes an Hib invective, and you will be taken seriously. Until then you have not answered the question.”

    Evidence? What else do you expect when you get a Hib shot? Of course, you’re getting the Haemophilus b capsular polysaccharide (polyribosyl-ribitol-phosphate (PRP). Read the label for crying out loud, you’re not getting any brown sugar or Splenda.

    “Tell us exactly why using the vaccine is worse than letting a child become permanently disabled or killed from the actual disease? ”

    You shouldn’t be asking parents on how they plan to disable or kill their children. That is very unethical. All they have to do is to stay away from any source of infection e.g. natural infection and vaccines. If you cannot even protect your children from getting “itty bitty bits” of KNOWN pathogens, then you are turning them into sacrificial lambs.

    “Now I understand Thing1Thing2… she/he does not doing any kind of medical intervention. He/she will not ever tell us which is better: the vaccine or the disease.”

    You mean which of the two is more horrible? A minor sexual assault is “BETTER” than getting raped. And of course, you advocate the ritual that parents have their children subjected to some form of minor sexual harassment early in life to prepare them in the event a rape occurs. And, at some point, a rape happens, it will be a lot EASIER for them to handle the ordeal. But you’re not alone though. How about those who prefer getting “raped” instead. Yes, I am talking about those insane parents who party their naive children in a varicella-infested house.

    “It must be some kind of “our precious bodily fluids” stuff. He/she would rather see a baby die from pertussis or Hib because that is the “natural” option, instead of getting “teh ebil” vaccine. ”

    The natural option is to stay away from contagious individuals and from any source of infection like vaccines. How hard could it be for you not to understand it? I believe some people can even lose their “natural” instinct.

    “Hey, troll bot, do you have a reference for that number or did it come from some faulty memory chip?”

    Just a nitpick. Actually that is more than 700,000 iatrogenic deaths a YEAR brought to you by your friendly doctors in your neighborhood.

  82. Chris says:

    My, my, my… you are going into fully loony mode. Sexual assault? Polysaccharide is a type of starch, which is a glucose polymer (which is a type of sugar). It shows you read the stuff, but you don’t understand it.

    For goodness sake, why do you always oppose natural childbirth and breastfeeding.

    Interesting projection. Since I did both, and even breastfed for over two years the younger two kids (the oldest self-weaned after he turned a year old).

    You seem to be in the “natural is better” for everything, including that diseases must be easy to avoid. That is a Nirvana fallacy. Especially since some infectious agents can stay in a room and still infect long after a sick person leaves the room.

    So what is your plan to protect a baby? Keep them in a sterile environment? Never let them out of the room they are born in until they are five years old? Boil to sterilize all their food? Make sure the air to that room is completely filtered? Put them in an air-proof bag, and then boil them to kill all of the bacteria?

    Just a nitpick. Actually that is more than 700,000 iatrogenic deaths a YEAR brought to you by your friendly doctors in your neighborhood.

    Okay, where does this number come from? How many of those people would have died anyway without medical intervention? Just repeating the claim does not make it true, nor is it proof of any kind.

  83. Chris says:

    Also, oh, clueless one: I also used cloth diapers and made baby food, plus I have an organic garden. The latter being a reason I keep up with my tetanus boosters (oh, sure… you would probably never let a kid near dirt, as that contains tetanus spoors and, quelle horreur, aluminum!).

    Just because I did the “natural mama” bit does not mean I reject science. Vaccines are a more natural and kinder way of protecting children than letting them get sick.

    Now you come up with real evidence that vaccines cause more harm than diseases, or just go away with your loony toon ideas about the world.

  84. Th1Th2 says:

    Chris,

    “Polysaccharide is a type of starch, which is a glucose polymer (which is a type of sugar). It shows you read the stuff, but you don’t understand it.”

    You’re the one who started the “sugar coating” thingy, to intentionally mislead uninformed parents that they are just getting some sort of a table sugar from the vaccine and deliberately ignored the fact that these “sugars” are associated with the pathogenic Hib.

    “You seem to be in the “natural is better” for everything, including that diseases must be easy to avoid. That is a Nirvana fallacy. Especially since some infectious agents can stay in a room and still infect long after a sick person leaves the room.”

    I am 10 miles away from the nearest source of infection, that is, away from the nearest vaccine and sick people. Should I be worried? I thought that’s quite a long distance for them to infect me. But some people like to be living in a cesspool or become one. Just check your local hospital.

    “So what is your plan to protect a baby? Keep them in a sterile environment? Never let them out of the room they are born in until they are five years old? Boil to sterilize all their food? Make sure the air to that room is completely filtered? Put them in an air-proof bag, and then boil them to kill all of the bacteria?”

    To start off, I will protect the newborns from any source of infection by avoiding intentional inoculation and exposure to diseases. The rest of the options you’re giving me are unnecessary and farcical.

  85. You know, pretty much whenever someone analogizes something to child molestation, I figure they have completely lost their moral bearings.

  86. Th1Th2 says:

    Chris,

    “(oh, sure… you would probably never let a kid near dirt, as that contains tetanus spoors and, quelle horreur, aluminum!).”

    Why should I let the child walk on the dirt when there is a dry concrete pavement next to it? A toddler would readily know which is the safe path to take even without the knowledge of C. tetani, but I am just fascinated how parents are offering very poor choices (or lack thereof).

  87. Harriet Hall says:

    Th1Th2 is right. The best plan would be to keep newborns away from any possible source of infection. Like the boy in the bubble. It’s a laudable goal, but I don’t see how it’s possible in the real world.

    As for the sidewalk/dirt scenario, I think toddlers are likely to find the dirt more interesting: it’s something they can pick up, play with and even eat.

  88. Chris says:

    I just figure this is a good place to point to if anyone tried to have a dialog with this person. I’m curious what kind of burnt earth technique this natural living person used to destroy every Clostridium tetani within ten miles, or all of the teaming microbes on his/her body.

    Still can’t see any evidence of where the mystical 700,000 came from. In 2006 there were about 2.5 million deaths in the USA, a country with about 307 million people. It is hard to believe that over a quarter were caused by real medicine. That is definitely an alternative reality.

  89. Th1Th2 says:

    Chris,

    “Vaccines are a more natural and kinder way of protecting children than letting them get sick.”

    Natural? I don’t find it natural at all when a child has to get a series of intentional needle sticks and has to suffer the ill effects of the injury every clinic visits. What I find natural though is that vaccines are just as similar as to the disease-causing microorganism hence, they are the artificial source of infection.

    Kinder? Snake oil tactic. Dumb doctors always do that to sell their product. Seriously, babies are too young to know what kindness is. They cry when they are hurt. They don’t punch but I hope they do.

  90. Chris says:

    Why should I let the child walk on the dirt when there is a dry concrete pavement next to it? A toddler would readily know which is the safe path to take even without the knowledge of C. tetani, but I am just fascinated how parents are offering very poor choices (or lack thereof).

    Proof you have never been around very young children. Your Nirvana world does not exist.

    Also what you said is sad, so very sad. I am so glad that we have been able to give our children a real childhood that included playing in dirt, scraping knees (easier on sidewalks because they are hard), swims at the beach (where we found fossils! and live clams!) and contact with other children.

  91. Chris says:

    I don’t find it natural at all when a child has to get a series of intentional needle sticks and has to suffer the ill effects of the injury every clinic visits. What I find natural though is that vaccines are just as similar as to the disease-causing microorganism hence, they are the artificial source of infection.

    You have never dealt with a child who has been hospitalized due to a real infection (I have, several times). From what you wrote earlier, you have absolutely no experience with children. I hope you never have children, because they would live in a very limited and stifling environment.

    You jump on anyone who types a mistake, yet you refuse to absorb any information that shows you are in error. You have been told over and over again that the immune response to a vaccine is not a full infection.

  92. Th1Th2 says:

    Harriet Hall,

    “Th1Th2 is right. The best plan would be to keep newborns away from any possible source of infection. Like the boy in the bubble. It’s a laudable goal, but I don’t see how it’s possible in the real world. ”

    Keep the newborns away from infectious sources like vaccines and contagious individuals. Possible? Absolutely. Needless to say, it’s effortless. No bubbles needed.

  93. Th1Th2 says:

    Harriet Hall,

    “As for the sidewalk/dirt scenario, I think toddlers are likely to find the dirt more interesting: it’s something they can pick up, play with and even eat.”

    Where are the parents of this kid? Oh Harriet.

  94. weing says:

    “Th1Th2 is right. The best plan would be to keep newborns away from any possible source of infection. Like the boy in the bubble. It’s a laudable goal, but I don’t see how it’s possible in the real world. ”

    I’m not even sure about that, at least in someone without an immune deficiency. There is some evidence that a sterile environment could be contributing to the increase in asthma and inflammatory bowel disease.

    This guy is so off base that it would be an improvement for him to be even wrong.

  95. Th1Th2 says:

    Chris,

    “Proof you have never been around very young children. Your Nirvana world does not exist.

    Also what you said is sad, so very sad. I am so glad that we have been able to give our children a real childhood that included playing in dirt, scraping knees (easier on sidewalks because they are hard), swims at the beach (where we found fossils! and live clams!) and contact with other children.”

    Playing in dirt? I know a place where it is even more ‘dirty’. Why don’t you let them play in a landfill or sewage. Which brings me back to your previous question, ‘which is better’?

    Scrapping knees? They don’t use their knees to walk, do they? If that can be prevented, why can’t you? It seems though the more children scraped their knees, the happier are you.

    Beach? Fine. I don’t see any problem with that.

    Contact with other children? For as long as they are not sick and contagious.

  96. Chris says:

    He/she really does not understand child development.

    When my younger son was between three to five I sometimes find him chewing gum. I did not give them gum because it would be found in unfortunate places. I asked him where he got the gum, and then he pointed to spot on the sidewalk where he had pried up off some to chew.

    He has a very robust immune system, is fully vaccinated and very healthy.

  97. Chris says:

    Scrapping knees? They don’t use their knees to walk, do they? If that can be prevented, why can’t you?

    Further proof this person has never been around young children. Do you actually think toddlers don’t run and fall? Do you think that on their first birthday they get up and start walking perfectly? That no child has every tripped on toy?

    And really, what kind of child never plays in dirt, or at a minimum a sand box? Have you ever heard of these?

  98. Th1Th2 says:

    weing,

    “There is some evidence that a sterile environment could be contributing to the increase in asthma and inflammatory bowel disease. This guy is so off base that it would be an improvement for him to be even wrong.”

    Clearly, that is NOT the point. Obviously, basic comprehension is not one of your skills.

    I am talking about internal sterility in areas that are normally and physiologically free of any biological contaminants such as the blood, brain, CSF and the muscles. Vaccines, inherently, thwart this aseptic state by introducing non-indigenous components from known pathogens.

    So now who’s off base?

  99. Cowy1 says:

    Can it be banned now? This is so ridiculous that it’s hard for me to believe that somebody could actually believe it. I’m all for realistic argument but this is just poisoning the message section.

    I mean, I’m a reasonably smart guy with a pretty strong background in science and I get lost trying to figure out what the hell it’s talking about.

  100. “Can it be banned now? This is so ridiculous that it’s hard for me to believe that somebody could actually believe it. I’m all for realistic argument but this is just poisoning the message section.”

    If the billy goats stopped trip-tropping across the bridge it wouldn’t be as problematic.

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