Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Vaccinations: Why We Don't

James GillrayThe Cow-Pock—or—
the Wonderful Effects of the New Inoculation!
In the US, we vaccinate our kids more than any other country, and certainly we "require" more vacines before the age of two than anyone else. The amount of toxic load we expect a child to carry, even before their immune systems are fully formed, is outrageous. I believe the reasons we are so different from other countries is the for-profit health care system. 
"In 1982, there were four drug companies making and selling vaccines for children in the U.S.: Merck, Wyeth, Lederle and Connaught. In 2007, after two decades of mergers and acquisitions, there are six drug companies making and selling vaccines for children in the U.S.: Merck, Wyeth, Sanofi Pasteur, GlaxoSmithKline, MedImmune and Novartis. Foreign companies, like Australia's CSL Biotherapies, are poised to enter the lucrative US vaccine market soon. There are more than 200 vaccine trials in various stages worldwide and most vaccines being developed will be targeted by CDC officials and drug company lobbyists for widespread use in order to guarantee stockholder profits for vaccine manufacturers." -National Vaccine Information Center
While there are no conclusive studies definitively linking vaccines to myriad health and developmental issues, there is enough anecdotal evidence and preliminary studies, from this country and elsewhere, to give me pause. The reason that there are no studies in the US on this topic? There is too much money invested in the vaccination schedule. No one will fund such a study that impedes such astronomical profits.

I chose to delay and possibly refuse all vaccines for Rowan. I know that this is a polarizing issue for many- one where anger and fear make both sides uncivil to one another. But the truth is, we all want the best for our children. I happen to believe that less pharmaceuticals in my son's body is better for him. I believe developing natural immunity through exposure is best.

"Even CDC data show a 99.8% pertussis recovery rate during the 1992-94 period. One Cincinnati Children’s Hospital infectious diseases expert said at the time: “The disease was very mild, no one died, and no one went to the intensive care unit.” 
Nearly always, childhood infectious diseases “are benign and self-limiting. They usually impart lifelong immunity, whereas vaccine-induced immunization (when achieved) is only temporary.” In fact, it can increase vulnerability later on by postponing better tolerated childhood illnesses until adulthood when death rates (though still low) are far higher. 
Most important is that nearly all common infectious diseases are rarely dangerous, and, in fact, can develop strong, healthy adult immune systems when they’re most needed. In addition, few people know that children who didn’t contract measles have a higher incidence of skin diseases, degenerative bone and cartilage ones, and tumors while ovarian cancer is higher among mumps-free adult women. The human immune system benefits from common childhood infectious diseases. Freedom from them may be harmful later on." -Alan G. Phillips

To me, the risks to my son's health and development are not worth it. For example, the chances of a serious adverse reaction to the DPT vaccine are 1 in 1750, while my son's chances of dying from pertussis each year are about 1 in several million. With pertussis in particular, the number of vaccine-related deaths dwarfs the number of disease deaths. Simply put, according to CDC numbers, the vaccine is 100 times more deadly than the disease. 

Did you know that there are enough of these "adverse reactions" that the government (FDA) has set up the VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Effects Reporting System)? It receives about 11,000 reports of serious adverse reactions to vaccination annually, and 1% (112+) of those are *deaths* from vaccine reactions. And frankly, while these numbers are scary enough, they are the tip of the iceberg:

  1. The FDA estimates that only 1% of serious adverse reactions are reported and the CDC says it’s 10%.
  2. Medical school students testified before Congress that they’re told not to report these incidents.
  3. According to the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), only one in 40 New York doctors reported their adverse vaccine reactions or deaths.
  4. International studies show vaccines cause up to 10,000 US SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) deaths annually, and at least half of them are from vaccines.
  5. Another study determined that 3000 US children die annually from vaccines.
  6. Poor reporting in America suggests that annual adverse vaccine reactions, in fact, number from 100,000 – one million;
  7. Since 1988, the government’s National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP) paid families of affected children $1.2 billion in damages;
  8. As authorized by the 2006 Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act, HHS Secretary Sebelius, granted drug companies legal immunity (except for impossible to prove willful misconduct) to proliferate dangerous, untested Swine Flu vaccines globally;
  9. Vaccines are legally mandated in all 50 US states, though legally avoidable in most.
  10. In settling vaccine damage suits, drug companies impose gag orders to keep vital information from the public.
  11. Insurers refuse to cover adverse vaccine reactions because of the high potential liability they’d face.

Vaccines don't do a good job at preventing disease outbreaks. Measles, mumps, small pox, polio and Hib outbreaks have all occurred in vaccinated populations. So the vaccines do not even provide the protection they are supposed to. One of my friends can get vaccinated over and over, and still not build up immunity. It is her unique biochemistry, and it is doubtful that this issue only affects her.

In 1918, the Philippines experienced their worst smallpox epidemic ever after 8 million people received 24.5 million vaccine doses; the death rate quadrupled as a result. In 1989, the country of Oman experienced a widespread polio outbreak six months after achieving complete vaccination. In the U.S. in 1986, 90% of 1300 pertussis cases in Kansas were "adequately vaccinated." 72% of pertussis cases in the 1993 Chicago outbreak were fully up to date with their vaccinations. Statistically, I am just not buying what they are selling.

When I was a kid, the vaccine schedule was much less than it is today. Here is a link to today's schedule for kids 6 and under. When I was a kid, we got DTP (Diptheria/Tetinus/Pertussis), Polio, and the MMR (Measles/Mumps/Rubella -which was new- it was introduced in 71, a year after I was born). That's it. Now kids get 35 vaccinations by age 6. There have been no long-term studies on the effects of vaccines. And some of the ingredients are highly toxic. While most manufacturers claim to have removed mercury from their products, a simple reading of most ingredient labels shows that this is not true.

Thimerosal is the preservative of choice for vaccine manufacturers. First introduced by Eli Lilly and Company in the late 1920s and early 1930s, the company began selling it as a preservative in vaccines in the 1940s. Thimerosal contains 49.6 percent mercury by weight and is metabolized or degraded into ethylmercury and thiosalicylate. Mercury, or more precisely, ethylmercury, is the principle agent that kills contaminants. Unfortunately, mercury also kills much more than that. 
The Department of Defense classifies mercury as a hazardous material that could cause death if swallowed, inhaled or absorbed through the skin. Studies indicate that mercury tends to accumulate in the brains of primates and other animals after they are injected with vaccines. Mercury poisoning has been linked to cardiovascular disease, autism, seizures, mental retardation, hyperactivity, dyslexia and many other nervous system conditions. That's why the FDA rigorously limits exposure to mercury in foods and drugs. Some common sources of mercury include dental amalgam fillings, various vaccines and certain fish contaminated by polluted ocean waters. 
The toxicity of mercury has never been in question. The real question is precisely how much mercury-laced thimerosal is toxic, and what are the possible consequences for our children at low doses?-Natural News

Of the manufacturers that have replaced Thimoserol (due to public pressure), they have replaced it with a neurotoxin- aluminum. I am aghast.


  1. I too choose to delay vaccine for my girls. I also wonder since I saw a vaccine for smallpox and 'gastro-entérite' (when one get sick and vomit) recently if one of the reason we may choose to vaccine is the fear of losing too much workday? Some of us cannot affort to take a week off to stay with a kid who have smallpox or measle and school / day care won't accept them for the duration. So, we are doing a good thing by protecting our children and protecting the economy from loss work day and saving us from a possible jobloss or financial difficulty.

    The vaccine question is indeed load with emotional response and facts can be used to mean almost anything in a brochure... As you said, we all want what is best for our kid.

  2. I understand where you're coming from; I do pharmacoepidemiology research for a living, and I too tend to be a bit wary about putting any kind of pharmaceutical in my body because I see the adverse effects that can occur. But just two points as devil's advocate you may not have thought of:

    -Most colleges require up-to-date vaccines for all students (no opt-out option here), especially if the child is planning on living on campus. Additionally, many employers also require these vaccines (hospitals and medical clinics, public health institutions, working with or in developing countries, dealing with certain populations, etc). So this is an issue that may be forced on your son anyways as he gets older.

    -The VAERS model is not confined to vaccines; the FDA collects all adverse events from any and all pharmaceuticals and devices (http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/Surveillance/AdverseDrugEffects/default.htm). Having these reporting mechanisms in place are actually a beneficial thing, not a negative thing; when this adverse event data is being collected in real time, we're better able to catch a potentially harmful drug early on and push for it to go off the market. If we didn't have AERS/VAERS, we'd have many more Thalidomide and Vioxx incidents, so the mere existence of AERS/VAERS is absolutely a good thing. I say this as both a pharmacoepidemiology researcher, and a general consumer of FDA-approved products.

    Also, FYI numbers don't tell the whole story in any data set; if 100 people get sick from taking a medication, that number is meaningless unless you know how many people take that medication also and don't get sick. 100 sick out of 100 total likely means there's a major problem with the drug, but 100 out of 1,000,000,000 isn't much cause for concern, especially if you don't know if that drug 100% caused the sickness or if they have other things going on that could interact (comorbidities, concommitant medication, genetic predisposition to an allergic reaction, etc). The number you quoted of "11,000 reports of serious adverse reactions to vaccination annually" doesn't mean a whole lot on its own, unless we are able to compare that to how many people are exposed to the vaccines *without* adverse reaction... not to mention that it's lumping all vaccines together, when each acts in a different way on a different condition. Personally, I'd look at each vaccine alone and compare the risk/benefit profile separately (who takes vaccine A and has a reaction vs. who takes vaccine A and doesn't have a reaction, vs. what the risk is for someone to get the disease vaccine A is trying to prevent and how serious that disease is to treat/cure). And please do read the actual body of medical research for yourself, don't rely on opinions... meta-analyses are especially helpful for this, because one article will take the results of a bunch of similar papers and plot it out visually in a Forrest plot so you can see what the general trend of results are with the current research on that topic.

    1. Thank you for your well articulated points! I appreciate respectful dialogue very much.

      My point of view on the college and health care careers is the same one I hold on circumcision: if he really wants it when he is older, he can get them then. I will not foist something that cannot be undone on him as a child, esp. if I feel it could do harm.

      Looking at each vaccine alone is great- if only people could access them that way. Most doctors do not carry single vaccines any more, they are all combinations, and NO studies have been done on the long-term effects of combination vaccines. Most will have to special order the vaccine to have a single shot, if they can get them at all, and most insurance will not cover this "special order".

      I feel the same way about all the adverse reaction agencies in big pharmaland. Just because VAERS isn't the only one (that there are ones for other phrama products) does not put my mind at ease, it makes me wary of all pharma instead. I limit what drugs I put in my body as a rule already anyway. I take very few. Plants in their unadulterated or simple extractd state are my medicine for the most part.

  3. We chose to stop vaccinating all together 2 years ago (for all the reasons above and more!). My 7 year old had a seizure after her 1 year shots (which were delayed) and I had a life threatening respiratory reaction when I had the DTP after my 3 year old was born. Nope, not worth it for our family! The FDA admits (on their website fda.org) that there is 50 times MORE aluminum per vaccine than is considered safe for a human to have in their bodies at one time. PER VACCINE! How many shots does a 1 year old get (6, right!?)? But people who don't vaccinate are considered the irresponsible whack jobs. Well, alright, but I'm only doing whats best for my family, just like everyone else ;) Great post!


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