White Coat Underground

The movement against vaccination is old—very old. All medical interventions require scrutiny. Like any medical intervention, vaccines require systematic investigation before deployment, and monitoring during their use. Still, vaccines have done more for public health than most Westerners under the age of fifty can imagine.

Inoculation and vaccination have been vilified in many ways, from interfering with the will of God, to being a vast conspiracy to infect [insert ethnic group here] with [insert disease here], to a cause of autism.

There have been “bad” vaccines, and when this has happened, even if the vaccine wasn’t clearly the cause of a problem, it was withdrawn. Other vaccines no longer have a favorable risk-benefit ratio, such as smallpox, and are no longer widely used. But the vaccines in regular use have been tested, retested, and tested again, and found to be very safe.

The modern anti-vaccine movement (or “infectious disease promotion movement”) was birthed in 1998 when Andrew Wakefield published a study in the Lancet, a prestigious medical journal. Based on observations of only twelve patients, Wakefield claimed that the MMR vaccine (measles, mumps, rubella) somehow caused autism, via some type of colitis. This study led directly to a resurgence of epidemic measles in the UK, and fueled the American anti-vaccine movement, led by such brainless ideologues as Robert Kennedy, Jr. and Jenny McCarthy.

A fundamental misunderstanding of science has never been at the core of the anti-vaccine movement; lies, self-promotion, and demagoguery are the true heart of this destructive social movement. And now it has come out that Andrew Wakefield’s original study, which had already been disavowed by his co-authors and the journal itself, may have been built on a foundation of lies. The Times (no, the other Times) is reporting that Wakefield falsified his data, changing temporal relationships of vaccines to symptoms, making up details that contradicted the data from the patients’ charts, and making up pathology findings.

This goes to the heart of the difference between medical science, medical ethics, and “everything else”. Real medicine is built upon real science, and follows (ideally) a set of ethical principles. When medical practice is based on science, and is deployed with compassion, the art of medicine is at its pinnacle. When quasi-medical ideas are corrupted, whether in ignorance or for personal gain, the harm that can be done on an individual and societal level is nearly unimaginable. People like Wakefield help to break the relationships between patients and doctors, and between public health officials and populations. They cloak their self-promoting idiocy in false compassion. They. Kill. People.

It’s really that simple. People like Wakefield, Kennedy, and David Kirby promote the spread of deadly diseases. The current resurgence in epidemic diseases lays not at the door of poor policy, poverty, or corrupt governments, but at the feet of the dishonest ideologues who stand in the way of the health of your children and mine.

Comments

  1. #1 Donna B.
    February 7, 2009

    I’m always amazed that the push for a healthy lifestyle and denial of the amazing usefulness of vaccines often comes from the same person.

    It also amazes me that the same person can advocate using taxes on cigarettes to fund children’s health care and at the same time use other funds to promote non-smoking.

    Seems there’s a basic math/logic problem somewhere.

  2. #2 literarydeadkittens
    February 8, 2009

    Have you had a look at Goldacre’s ‘Bad Science’ lately? He had a run-in with LBC and Jeni Barnett’s godawful radio show. It’s technically over copyright, but my main point is the bite on vaccines. She spewed a fountain of total bull and eagerly listened to the morons who rang in. I nearly clawed my face off in frustration.

    The soundbite’s over at wikileaks.

    I think it was her first caller who had four unvaccinated children and had decided not to vaccinate after attending a homeopathy course. Why did she attend the homeopathy course? Her inner knowledge!

    It was par for the course after that, although there were a couple of sensible people who rang in, including a doctor with a cold. I lost all hope when she asked why, if he had had the flu vaccine, he had caught a cold.

    GAH!

  3. #3 The Perky Skeptic
    February 8, 2009

    Well-stated. It is fundamentally about their irrational fear of injections, and the cost of their irrational fear is measured in lost lives.

  4. #4 Luci
    February 8, 2009

    Interesting reading the last few days on some newspaper sites from Suisse Romande (Le Matin and 24 Heures have it covered) on the measles epidemic in the canton of Vaud. What’s going on? Parents are refusing vaccinations. Doctors with undisguised sympathies with the total homeopathic approach are breaking the law by failing to report cases. Lots of kids are sick, schools have been closed.

    This would be wu rather than woo, but the effect is the same and the kids are suffering because of stupid adults.

  5. #5 MikeB
    February 8, 2009

    Unfortunately, the BBC didn’t ask Ben Goldacre to appear when they had an item about the rise in measles on the Today programme recently. They did have a father who’d refused to have the MMR, but was OK with single jabs. But then he admitted that his kids had had no jabs at all. He also said that kids would fight off measles naturally, depending on their immune systems. By this point, I’m shouting abuse at the radio, since this guy is not just putting his kids at risk, he’s putting other people at risk too.

    They had a senior doctor to rebut this nonsense, but Ben really gets to the heart of the matter – he understands that with the media, you have to say ‘no’ to stuff like this, loudly and often. If the guy is an idiot, say it.

  6. #6 Liz Ditz
    February 8, 2009

    I’ve done another round-up post — who is saying what about the Deer articles on Wakefield in the London Times. I’ve included this post.

    11 years on, Wakefield Manufactured Data showing MMR-Autism Link?

  7. #7 FreeSpeaker
    February 9, 2009

    Have enjoyed your comments on Respectful Insolence, which is a daily read for me.

    I have oft used the phrase, pro-infectious disease merchants of disability and death to describe the members of what you refer to as “infectious disease promotion movement”.

    Remember the merchants concentrate their arguments on the fact that death is down, but ignore those kids who are left with life-long disabilities as the result of an otherwise vaccine preventable disease.

  8. #8 bensmyson
    February 9, 2009

    Was anyone paid to debunk Wakefield?

    Anyone know what, if anything, this has to do with the fact that there is increase in the number of children suffering brain injuries and in a few cases death, immediately after receiving the MMR,MMRV and HepB vaccines? Did Wakefield create this epidemic?

    I never heard of Wakefield prior to my son’s brain swelling up after his ProQuad, MMRV. (BTW, ProQuad was removed from the market the same month my son got his jab) Am I imaging the GI problems, the loss of speech, all the classical autistic like symptoms that resulted immediately after his vaccines?

    Any idea if these vaccines’ manufacturers are required to mention the possible brain damage or injury as a result of the administration of these vaccines to children? If so, did the FDA require the manufacturer to do so based on Wakefield’s study? OR did they do their own study?

    What percentage of children vaccinated are 100% safe from the virus the vaccine they were injected with?

    If you read the Deer report you’ll know he himself found that one out of the 12 children in the Wakefield study had regressed into exhibiting symptoms of autism immediately after receiving the MMR. That’s one out of 12. Should parents be fed that ALL VACCINES ARE SAFE when they are not? Come on, one out of twelve regressed into autism or so Deer said. Others say it is more like one out of 150 or 125.

    http://www.rescuepost.com/files/deer-response.pdf

  9. #9 PalMD
    February 9, 2009

    Jeez, what is it that you don’t get. This asshole MADE IT ALL UP! You’ve drunk so deep of the kool aid that all you have to fall back on is “THEN WHY IS THERE STILL MONKEYS??!?!”

  10. #10 isles
    February 9, 2009

    bensmyson:

    MMRV wasn’t “removed from the market” – there have been supply chain issues and so it has not been available for order. I don’t believe there has been any finding of brain injuries following MMR/MMRV or hep B. I do believe you are an antivax foamer.

    (Not as eloquent as PalMD, but then, who is?)

  11. #11 PalMD
    February 9, 2009

    I’m cranky, so I’ll go a little further than isles. Ignorant fools like “bensmyson” are actively harmful. They think they are the solution to a problem that they’ve completely misidentified. When they speak out stridently out of ignorance (but perhaps out of pain and hopelessness as well) they promote the spread of infectious diseases, and they basically call down a horrible fate on the children of other parents.

  12. #12 Joseph
    February 9, 2009

    If you read the Deer report you’ll know he himself found that one out of the 12 children in the Wakefield study had regressed into exhibiting symptoms of autism immediately after receiving the MMR.

    Let’s do some basic math, bensmyson. Let’s suppose that in their second year of life, half of all children are injected once with the MMR vaccine. Let’s also say that 30 in 10,000 2 year olds are diagnosed with autism. Let’s say a million children are born every year in the UK. That would leave us with 1,500 autistic children identified at 2 who receive their MMR vaccine when they are 2. Let’s say onset of autism occurs in a random day during the second year of life. That means that about 4 children would “become autistic” the same day they are vaccinated, by mere chance. Another 4 children the next day, and another 4 two days after. You see that it wouldn’t be too difficult for such cases to exist by coincidence alone?

  13. #13 Edna
    February 9, 2009

    My son has been chronically ill for 11 years with Crohn’s disease. Caused by the MMR vaccination? Enough studies show they can find a form of the measles virus in biopsies of Crohn’s patients. “Ignorant fools” and “antivax foamers” – quite charming. A parent who watches their beautiful, perfect child destroyed immediately after a jab KNOWS there is a connection. We know of the other parents too – the ones who’s child died within an hour of receiving the vaccination. But the doctors would not classify that as a reaction – how many of these are hidden? You can’t begin to hurt us with your name-calling; that vulnerability to insults became destroyed each day we looked at our fucked up children. And then we start to research, and then KNOW what you try to hide.
    Allegory: You stub your toe and it bleeds, and then you are supposed to believe a doctor that there is no connection between the stubbed toe and the bleeding because statistically toes bleed nearly every day? Just who are the ignorant fools here?

    A number of years ago I found out the vaccine data held by CDC would not be released (in violation of the Freedom of Information Act). Does anyone know if they’ve been released yet? Ta

  14. #14 Sadine Tebbal, Ph.D.
    February 9, 2009

    A lot of people dont seem to understand that as parents of autistic kids we believed before in the safety of vaccines and in the medical system. We have a proof – we unfortunately vaccinated our kids. But now that our kids got hurt very badly by the vaccines (containing mercury, heavy metals, live viruses and all other toxic chemicals), we dont believe anymore in the system. We got burned once, we learned our lesson. We are not nuts or anti-vaccine just for the fun of it. We do not make money when warning other parents about vaccines. We just dont want anybody to go through what we have been through. Every decent person do that on a regular basis warning neighbors or family members about a danger. Just think about who is trying to make money about all this and wake up. And please dont use the fear tactic (like the war on terror) it does not work on people who are awake and well documented and educated.

  15. #15 PalMD
    February 9, 2009

    We have a proof

    You do? You mean your personal anecdotes?

    Fear tactics are ABSOLUTELY called for. People like you (who casually toss out the PhD label to make people think you know something) are DIRECTLY responsible for the current increase in epidemic illness. You should be ashamed.

  16. PalMD and fellow science trained professionals, If you read this book “Changing the course of Autism” by Bryan Jepson, M.D., [read some of it on Google books for free] you will have an updated perspective and understanding of autism / PDD causes, which are many and complex (immune/detox/gastro/neuro). It’s the result of a meta-review of 1000 scientific research studies that E.R. doc Jepson was motivated to do after his child was diagnosed, from the best journals of multiple science disciplines. Key results I outline below for you and your readers.

    Autism spectrum diseases aka PDD spectrum occur at a rate of 1 in 150 and increasing. So those injured children need more science trained folks (MD’s, INTERNISTS, biochemists, neurologists, chemists, meta research reviewers, biologists) to help seek out the causes and look reasons why the most effective treatments are helping. Google autism one 2008 presentations to see those by Dr. Deth, Dr. Kenneth Bock, and look up Dr. Jill James biochemist writing about metabolism issues in autism to see what really occurs in its patho. Reduced detox ability due to gene susceptability- associated low glutathione output of incomplete or low output methylation cycle (so some immune systems can’t handle the CDC’s total vaccination schedule), cell damage from free radicals that aren’t removed fast enough, auto-immunity in many cases, resulting high levels of cytokine inflamatory agents in the CSF, brain inflamation, and resulting underconnectivity. Fever while ill with another virus (such as a cold) causes more awareness, responsiveness, and improved behaviour in 4 of 5 children with PDD, which implies many critical but injured neural circuits are intact but weakly connected at certain nodes. Instead of just lamenting for hours about those you deem as not using sci based medicine, all use your research and science skills to help find out why fever helps pdd, as it may lead to diagnostic tools and unlock most effective treatments for this most prevalent childhood developmental disease. Note also that allergies and asthma (new epidemics) involve inflamation too and relate to detox ability of the individual (gene susceptability & diet matter). For those with immune gene or epigene issues, consider a child’s total lifetime chemical exposure to reach an individual’s toxic tipping point (varies by person) and the resulting brain cytokines & inflamation and DSM-IV diagnoses. There are several causes and various conditions that result in the behavioural diagnosed conditions called PDD spectrum. The type 1 cause (genetic) of PDD was recently defined but it covers just 5% of PDD cases. Other causes need to found and sub-typed. Start by standing on the shoulders of giants by reading references to their research in the new PDR of PDD – the Jepson book I refer to above. Many other MD’s that read that book agree, and buy copies for other MD’s.

  17. #17 PalMD
    February 9, 2009

    Reduced detox ability due to gene susceptability- associated low glutathione output of incomplete or low output methylation cycle (so some immune systems can’t handle the CDC’s total vaccination schedule), cell damage from free radicals that aren’t removed fast enough, auto-immunity in many cases, resulting high levels of cytokine inflamatory agents in the CSF, brain inflamation, and resulting underconnectivity

    1) Do you know what any of that means?

    2) Do you have any legitimate citations to back up your assertions, most of which don’t make sense anyway?

  18. #18 Sadine Tebbal, Ph.D.
    February 9, 2009

    PalMD,
    The AMA was created by the pharma industry and is still completely runned by it. You are an MD which means you are a clinician and not a scientist. Your training consist of relating a disease to a drug and that’s it. As an MD, you dont have any research background. I have a pH.D which means I do research and know the difference between a real one and a bogus one. Most of the research deniying a link between vaccines and autism were epidemiological studies (e.g. statistical). Read the book “Lying with Statistics” that will help you understand the difference between an epidemiological research and a clinical research. Dr. Wakefield did a clinical research. Up to now, the CDC does not want to put any money on any clinical research because they are afraid of the results. Epidemiological studies, they love them because they can cook the results at will. The focus now is on genetic research (meaning the pharma industry is safe from liabilities)although there is no known genetic epidemic.

  19. #19 Dave S.
    February 9, 2009

    You are an MD which means you are a clinician and not a scientist. Your training consist of relating a disease to a drug and that’s it. As an MD, you dont have any research background. I have a pH.D which means I do research and know the difference between a real one and a bogus one…

    I have a Ph.D. too, and you’re full of crap.

    Dr. Wakefield did a clinical research.

    What part of “Wakefield falsified his data, changing temporal relationships of vaccines to symptoms, making up details that contradicted the data from the patients’ charts, and making up pathology findings.”, is good science according to you and your Ph.D.?

    PalMD is correct. People like yourself are responsible for any increases in preventable illnesses such as measles. You are trading a fake demon for a real one.

  20. #20 HCN
    February 9, 2009

    Sadine Tebbal lied with “Read the book “Lying with Statistics” that will help you understand the difference between an epidemiological research and a clinical research.”

    No it doesn’t. That book does not even go into real medical research. It is a cute little book that just shows how bad MARKETING studies are done. You obviously have only had the bare minimum education in statistics to quote that book, possibly as an engineering or chemistry student.

    You have absolutely no clue, especially when you roll in the “pharma shill gambit”:
    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2006/09/the_pharma_shill_gambit_1.php

    But that does not take away the facts that Wakefield:

    1) Was paid by a lawyer to come up with specific results.

    2) The majority of children were provided by the lawyer (ever hear of random sampling?)

    3) The study was only twelve children (ever do sample size estimates?)

    4) The medical records were misrepresented in the paper, it was claimed that most of the children changed after the vaccine when in fact many had been identified with issues BEFORE the vaccine, and some several months afterward.

    5) One of the researchers doing the PCR data came to Wakefield an told him the data was contaminated and that there were FALSE positives, but Wakefield continued on using the bad data (Chadwick testimony in the Autism Omnibus hearing).

    Or the fact that the MMR vaccine has been used in the USA since 1971, and there is no data to suggest a big increase in neurological issues starting at that time. Also of the over 20 studies show no relationship between the MMR and autism.

    Add to that an attempt to replicate Wakefield’s findings by those who were once paid by SafeMinds (the mercury mice grooming through skulls travesty), with over twice as many children and guess what! The results found nothing, zilch… nada. See:
    Mady Hornig, Thomas Briese, Timothy Buie, Margaret L. Bauman, Gregory Lauwers, Ulrike Siemetzki, Kimberly Hummel, Paul A. Rota, William J. Bellini, John J. O’Leary, Orla Sheils, Errol Alden, Larry Pickering, W. Ian Lipkin, Mark R. Cookson (2008). Lack of Association between Measles Virus Vaccine and Autism with Enteropathy: A Case-Control Study PLoS ONE, 3 (9) DOI:
    http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0003140

  21. #21 HCN
    February 9, 2009

    I am not a PhD, just a grad school dropout. But I know how to google:
    http://www.asmhou.org/2007-may?

    Guess is that the PhD is in either engineering, metallurgy or chemistry.

    I have taken engineering statistics, and it does not go into medical studies. But it does touch on the importance of sample size and random sampling, something that Dr. Tebbal has forgotten.

  22. #22 Dianne
    February 9, 2009

    pH.D

    Hmm…I’m just a dumb clinician but I thought that the pH scale was a numerical one. What’s a pH of D? Is it the same as a pH of 4? Or is it what you get when you measure the concentration of free deuterium ions?

    Sorry. Occasionally I just can’t resist making a typing error joke.

  23. #23 HCN
    February 9, 2009

    Another engineer from Texas wrote: “If you read this book “Changing the course of Autism” by Bryan Jepson, M.D., ”

    That is a book about DAN! therapies, and with Jepson being affiliated with the same organization as Wakefield — I would stay away from there! I would not touch that book with a pole the length of the distance of I-35.

    You’ve been sucked into a cesspool of quacks (like Deth, and the others). Dumping more chemicals in your kid is not going to make him/her “normal”. Though it will help lighten your back account. Back away, and look for some real research.

    Look at the real research in education, speech, pragmatic, and OT/PT therapies from those who are not out to take as much out of your wallet as they can. Try this:
    http://www.autismresearchnetwork.org/AN/ … the closest center is in Houston, but you should be able to find a good real therapists nearby. I did get good speech/language therapy for my younger son at one of the university clinics for $10/hour. And my oldest more disabled son got FREE therapy from this organization (using Texas part of the directory):
    http://www.scottishrite.org/what/phil/southcentral.htm#TX

    Much, much better books:

    “No Time for Jello” by Berneen Bratt
    “The Science and Fiction of Autism” by Laura Ellen Schreibman
    “Speech, Language and Learning Disorders” by Patricia McAleer Hamaguchi
    “Not Even Wrong” by Paul Collins
    “Unstrange Minds” by R.R. Grinker
    “Defeating Autism a Damaging Delusion” by Michael Fitzpatrick

  24. #24 PalMD
    February 9, 2009

    but those books sound kinda hard

  25. #25 Sadine Tebbal, Ph.D.
    February 9, 2009

    I am a chemist just for the info. I never put my title in any communication unless somebody already showed off his title (e.g. PalMD). Just a small question for all of you pro-vax. If you really believe in vaccines, It means that your kids are safe when they get the vaccines. Why then are you so afraid of kids who are not vaccinated. I am the one who should be afraid for my kid being in the same room with your kid that is loaded with toxic chemicals. But somehow, you are crying wolf. In science, it is not the heard followers who make discoveries, it is the one who think outside of the box. Doctors (MD’s) are trained and endoctrinated to believe in vaccines and all the drugs, they are fed at a rate of $36,000/per year per physician by the pharma industry. The only training (CE units)they get is through free lunch seminar paid by a pharma company. They dont have time to read real science.

  26. #26 PalMD
    February 9, 2009

    it truly does burn

  27. #27 HCN
    February 9, 2009

    Oh, no! Dr. L, not all of them.

    The first one is quite short and is a family’s first hand experience with Glenn Doman’s Institute in Pennsylvania. It has lots of interesting parallels to the DAN! doctor phenomena. “If the child improves, the program works. If the child does not improve it is because the parents did not do it right”!

    I should also mention another very good book that was part of a book club here:
    http://scienceblogs.com/bookclub/autisms_false_prophets/

    Also, not very hard to read. I am an engineer with just a BS degree who used to predict failure probabilities of structures due to vibrational loads, and I actually understood the chapter where epidemiology research was discussed. Though Dr. Tebbal may have a bit more trouble with the concepts because of his/her closed mind.

  28. #28 HCN
    February 9, 2009

    DR. Tebbal said “Why then are you so afraid of kids who are not vaccinated. I am the one who should be afraid for my kid being in the same room with your kid that is loaded with toxic chemicals.”

    Because, idiot PhD, my son had neonatal seizures as a newborn. Due to the idiocy surrounding the DPT vaccine at the time (due to the idiot Barbara Loe Fisher, which later turned out to be FALSE) he was denied protection from pertussis. He only received a DT vaccine.

    At that time our county was going through a pertussis EPIDEMIC (that means that it was spreading through the population due to NO herd immunity). Because of my son’s health issues (seizures), and because he was an infant he was very much in danger of serious problems if he got the actual disease. So I had to make sure he did not come anywhere near pertussis.

    I made sure to avoid coughing people, crowded areas and I actually asked the vaccine status of any children he came into contact with.

    Since you have the big ol’ chemistry degree, identify those chemicals and tell me exactly how they compare to the the pertussis toxin.

    By the way, how much of those toxins are in the MMR vaccine. I can usually tell someone has no clue about the issue when they something stupid like “aluminum and mercury in the MMR.”

  29. #29 HCN
    February 9, 2009

    More reading for you on why herd immunity is part of PUBLIC health:
    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article1055533.ece

  30. #30 HCN
    February 9, 2009

    Oh, I forgot to mention. At the time there was a pertussis epidemic in my county, measles had also returned:
    http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/378565

    Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

  31. #31 Sadine Tebbal
    February 9, 2009

    HCN,
    As your name indicate, in chemistry you are a deadly poison (HCN = Cyanide). Anyway, MMR does not contain mercury it contains aluminum. I was talking about all the toxics and poisons that are in vaccines. There are many web sites that will tell you exactly the components of each vaccine. Why do you think that every year a lot of people vaccinate against flu but still get it. Why dont they try one year without any flu vaccine and see if maybe nobody will get the flu. It is the same as any live virus injected to our kids. If you are afraid about your kid health, boost his immune system and dont get him close to kids that just got the vaccine, they are contagious. Read the insert of Tamiflu on the web site. May be that will make you understand the real threat.

  32. #32 Dave S.
    February 10, 2009

    Clearly Dr. Tebbal, you have not bothered to read anything on herd immunity.

    The kids passing diseases are the UNVACCINATED ones.

    Are you sure you’re a scientist? You don’t argue like one.

  33. #33 ResearchWhyFeverImprovesAutism
    February 10, 2009

    PalMD, I submitted PDD spectrum medical research citations you requested on PDD causes, but you didn’t let them post yet. Other topic: This interesting new paper indicates key neural circuits are present and can be returned to normal behavioral function in 4 of 5 kids with pdd, and a possible solution waits to be discovered by those that dare to follow the physiologic leads with an open mind to any newfound facts: Expert medical researchers posit why and how fever improves PDD (other study established that it does so dramatically). “Autism, fever, epigenetics and the locus coeruleus [of the brain]“. Albert Einstein College of Medicine:
    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6SYS-4V0MK30-1&_user=10&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&view=c&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=6a21f64c53f55f8323b1fc7b6af412cb

    Check out Nik’s anecdotal comment on the topic of how he saw glimpses of normalcy during fever only: He wrote in 2008: I’ve never been formally diagnosed as being on the spectrum, but often suspected I might be. I’m now 46 and since I was about 20, have experienced the very fundamental changes wrought by a cold/flu. Life is simply much, much easier. I become company-seeking rather than shunning.
    My thinking and behaviour become neurotypical. The greatest benefit is in genuinely connecting with people rather than something closer akin to really just ‘being with them’. It’s nice to be eloquent, confident and popular – a snapshot of normality. And then the cold/flu breaks and with it comes the plunge back into inner turmoil, anxiety and (relative) isolation …. an extremely difficult time! What it really does [to transition] is underline the near pointlessness of trying to lead a meaningful life when you’re on the spectrum, so stark is the contrast. When I was younger, I found the [fever ending] transition back from light to dark utterly unbearable. And if I’m brutally honest, at a root level, I really gave up and resigned myself to being a passenger on a ride over which (I felt) I had as near to no control as makes no difference. Compared to the brief and occasional interludes of neurotypicality, being on the spectrum is a lonely, painful, frustrating thing and a very good reason why research should be directed towards fever research without delay … quite simply because fever or more accurately, it’s effects on cerebro-functionality, is a temporary cure for a significant proportion of [4 of 5] autistics. Sadly however, it’s unlikely to attract a flood of research funding. If autism could be temporarily induced in neurotypicals, the situation would be altogether different.” End Nik’s quote.

  34. #34 Chuck
    February 10, 2009

    “I should also mention another very good book that was part of a book club here:”

    What is truly amazing is that the entire scienceblog community is only capable of analyzing ONLY ONE book.

    It is self evident what kind of “club” it truly was.

  35. #35 Sadine Tebbal
    February 10, 2009

    Dave S.
    I am not part of a herd and my kids too. I dont need a sheperd to guide me. If you feel like you need to be in a heard and beeing told what to do, that is your choice.
    If the vaccines were doing their job, only the unvaccinated kids will get sick. The vaccinated ones should be safe. How can the unvaccinated kids pass diseases to vaccinated kids ??? All the herd immunity “scientific” articles do not make any sense. They start with a wrong hypothesis and add so much assumptions that the conclusion can be anything you want.

  36. #36 noone
    February 10, 2009

    Well, now that chuck and sadine are here together, perhaps they can find their own forum for wackos and make sweet sweet love

  37. #37 HCN
    February 10, 2009

    Tebbal said “Anyway, MMR does not contain mercury it contains aluminum. was talking about all the toxics and poisons that are in vaccines. There are many web sites that will tell you exactly the components of each vaccine.”

    Wrong. The MMR does not contain aluminum.

    It is obvious that despite you flogging your chemical degree, you have no clue about what you are talking about, now how to find out real medical or scientific evidence.

    I asked you to tell me what the “toxins” are and you gave the “Look it up, it is on the internet” whack-a-loon answer. If you really knew any science you would have told me exactly which of them were the “toxin” and their relative toxicity.

    You are completely clueless.

  38. #38 HCN
    February 10, 2009

    Chuck said “What is truly amazing is that the entire scienceblog community is only capable of analyzing ONLY ONE book.”

    Idiot, that was the second book. Are you sure you can count? And they are posting more book reviews.

  39. #39 Chuck
    February 10, 2009

    I apologize. That first book review generated so much buzz and traffic that I don’t know how I could have possibly missed it.

  40. #40 Dianne
    February 10, 2009

    Check out Nik’s anecdotal comment on the topic

    So? Like Nik I am an undiagnosed but probable aspie (my results on formal testing of ability to read people’s emotions from their expressions actually comes out as worse than the typical aspie). I’m more company shunning when sick. How anyone would want much company when running a 40 degree temp I can’t imagine.

    But even assuming that I’m an outlier or not aspie at all but just another neurotic person looking for an exotic diagnosis (could be) and most people with autism are more social when sick…so what? Should we deliberately infect autistic people to make them (temporarily) more neurotypical? Deny them anti-inflammatories that might reduce the fever/neurotypicality?

    And what if a person with autism gets a fever as a side effect of a vaccine? Does the evil, autism-promoting character outweigh the good, anti-autism effects of the fever or vice versa?

  41. #41 Chuck
    February 10, 2009

    “People like Wakefield help to break the relationships between patients and doctors, and between public health officials and populations.”

    I wonder how that type of thinking will play out in this situation.

    http://www.ageofautism.com/2009/02/columbia-university-press-and-dr-paul-offit-sued-for-autisms-false-prophets.html

  42. #42 roge
    February 10, 2009

    People are *dead* because of Wakefield’s fraud. A jail sentence wouldn’t be out of the question. At least revoke his medical license.

  43. #43 Edna
    February 10, 2009

    PHd bragging? Great, I’ve a doctorate in law with a BA in Psych and Soc. I don’t think a lack of intelligence is the issue. I bet most people reading here have had at least a basic course in statistics. If people are blogging here, they also certainly know how to conduct research on the internet. I think the problem is incongruence. All people have accepted the reality that vaccines are a boon to society and great for our kids. And to challenge that belief causes great incongruence for EVERYone. Understand that most who are in the anti-vaccine camp once were pro-vaccine. And it was very unhinging to question a deeply held belief that all conventional medicine is best. It was extremely humbling to have to admit we were wrong and that we contributed to screwing up our own kids who we love dearly. You can see clearly from the blogs who is most challenged by noting the number of direct personal attacks. The pro-vaccine folks refuse to even consider that another position might actually be worth considering. The incongruence would be too overwhelming for the psyche. Especially for doctors – who can be quite proud and arrogant. Naturally, because people treat them godlike. I’ve been in enough hospitals over the last decade. At least 5 times the nurses quietly tattled on the doctor who did something wrong. They were afraid to confront the doctor directly. Fear indeed. There is a lot of good and bad research out there. Please, have an open mind and consider them roundly. Also, don’t be arrogant about where the research comes from, there is some very good research being conducted in countries that do not make it into accepted journals. There are compromises for all of us to consider. Some countries wait until the child is older before vaccinating so that the immune system is more mature. There are different forms of vaccinations, and different options can be created. And some illnesses are more threatening, while others are simple childhood illnesses. Medical community – we need and ask for your help – because you do have a very good education, but when you appear so rigid and attacking in your viewpoints, we can see your mind is not open and we simply don’t trust you anymore.

  44. #44 Chris
    February 10, 2009

    Edna said “Please, have an open mind and consider them roundly. Also, don’t be arrogant about where the research comes from, there is some very good research being conducted in countries that do not make it into accepted journals.”

    Except that there are reasons that certain journals are not acceptable. There are rules in scientific research, and the papers that violate those rules cannot be considered.

    It is much like mathematics, there are specific rules. One of those rules says that you may not divide a number by zero. Yet some people pull out their proof form something like for instance 1 = 2, except that one of the steps involved dividing a number by zero. Hence the proof is invalid.

    That also works for doing science. See:
    http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/?p=337

    Edna continued with “Some countries wait until the child is older before vaccinating so that the immune system is more mature.”

    Which countries are those? Recently I heard that it was Japan, but that turned out to be very wrong:
    http://idsc.nih.go.jp/yosoku/vacpdf/EN_05-1.pdf

    Edna continued with “And some illnesses are more threatening, while others are simple childhood illnesses.”

    Which are the simple childhood illnesses? Measles disables or kills one out of a thousand, mumps can cause deafness (and sterility, and even death) and Hib, diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis tend to kill children (over a dozen babies die in the USA from pertussis). Chicken pox can kill, but when it doesn’t it does not go away… the virus stays dormant in the body only to emerge painfully in the adult as shingles. While rubella mostly kills and disables unborn children, it never really went away until there was universal vaccination.

    I am sorry but the science has been done. The MMR has been used in the USA since 1971, and there are 25 studies showing no link between MMR and autism (Wakefield’s paper has been retracted). There have been studies on the other vaccines. Over 7700 hits come up in PubMed with the search terms “vaccine safety”, and it goes down to just over 500 with the terms “vaccine safety testing” in the search window.

    The proposed link between vaccines and autism is dead… It is a dead link… “It’s not pinin’! ‘It’s passed on! This link is no more! It has ceased to be! It’s expired and gone to meet its maker! It’s a stiff! Bereft of life, it rests in peace! If you hadn’t nailed it to the perch it’d be pushing up the daisies! Its metabolic processes are now ‘istory! It’s off the twig! It’s kicked the bucket, it’s shuffled off its mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin’ choir invisible!! THIS IS AN EX-LINK!!” (hat-tip to Monty Python and the dead parrot sketch)

    Now can we please stop with blame game, and get working on getting real and useful services for our disabled children? Things like real funding for the Individual with Disabilities Education Act, and funding to help our kids transition from school to work.

  45. #45 T Bruce McNeely
    February 11, 2009

    Dr. Tebbal,
    Your suggestion that we should try not giving the flu vaccine one year to see what happens has already been done – in 1919. Between 50 and 100 million people died.
    Also, you imply that tamiflu is a vaccine. It is not, it is a drug. I did my undergrad degree in chemistry, and I knew many chemists. Dr. Tebbal, you are no chemist.

  46. #46 Chuck
    February 11, 2009

    “Your suggestion that we should try not giving the flu vaccine one year to see what happens has already been done – in 1919. Between 50 and 100 million people died.”

    We do not need to go that far back and use an extreme example that has never been repeated. Last year (2007 – 2008) about 1/3 of the population was actually vaccinated for influenza. It wasn’t even a close match with a generous estimate of 40% effectiveness, so less than 20% of the population was effectively vaccinated.

    The US government cannot substantiate the number of deaths from influenza so last year and 1919 are both just guesses. How many millions died last year?

  47. #47 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 11, 2009

    Chuck,here’s some info for you:
    2000 influenza-related deaths in Canada each year.
    Most provices promote fluvax in seniors, elderly and others at high risk (health-care workers etc). This reduces flu deaths by 57% overall. Ontario lately has promoted universal fluvax for everyone over the age of 2. This has reduced the flu death rate by 74%. Not bad.
    Extrapolating the death rate in Canada in a non-pandemic year gives a world death toll of 400 000 per year. This doesn’t take into account the fact that Canadians are generally well off and healthy and have access to good medical care. I am confident that the usual yearly death toll is at least 1 000 000. In a pandemic, of course,you could multiply this number several times
    BTW the numbers from the US Government are not “just guesses”. They are estimates based on available data, using substantiated epidemiologic techniques. No, they’re not exact, but they’re probably pretty close.

  48. #48 Chuck
    February 11, 2009

    “BTW the numbers from the US Government are not “just guesses”.”

    There ARE NO GUESSES on the CDC web site for last season. Your entire post is completely irrelevant when it comes to the USA.

    What percent of the total Canadian population was vaccinated last year for influenza? Is that higher or lower compared to the year when the death rate was 57% higher?
    Giving percentage changes is meaningless with small numbers. Going from 2 deaths to 4 deaths is a 100% increase but statistically insignificant compared to the population of Los Angeles.

  49. #49 Chuck
    February 11, 2009

    Given the 1979-1994 pneumonia and influenza rate of 31.8 per 100,000 pop (CDC MMRW) and census estimates, the number of deaths for the USA is 99,000.

    Your extrapolation (non-pandemic year) and my estimate don’t seem to be telling the same story.

    Maybe we are just comparing apples and oranges.

  50. #50 HCN
    February 11, 2009

    Chuck, haven’t we already told you that the influenza vaccine does nothing for measles, mumps and rubella? Why do you go off onto another tangent. Oh, wait… it is because you are a crank:
    http://scienceblogs.com/denialism/2009/02/the_autismvaccines_fraud.php

    (okay, it is fair to say that T. Bruce McNeely started it)

    Still, the numbers for measles, mumps and rubella when the MMR vaccine take up goes down actually go up. There has been an exponential rise in measles in the UK. See:
    http://www.badscience.net/2009/02/lbc-mmr-jeni-barnett-an-early-day-motion-the-times-and-er-a-bit-of-stephen-fry/

  51. #51 Chuck
    February 11, 2009

    “Still, the numbers for measles, mumps and rubella when the MMR vaccine take up goes down actually go up. There has been an exponential rise in measles in the UK.”

    Very nice of you to bring up your MMR issue. If the exchange between T. Bruce McNeely and myself was specifically discussing MMR I would fully expect you to do so. The topic “The anti-vaccination movement—rotten to the core” is not specific to MMR only and I had absolutely no plans to discuss MMR on this thread. T. Bruce McNeely brought up the subject and I responded just as someone may respond to your post concerning MMR.

  52. #52 daedalus2u
    February 12, 2009

    If you want to read a real discussion of the physiology of fever and autism I have posted one on my blog. It is high NO from iNOS mediated through the immune system activation that causes fever that temporarily restores ASD behaviors to normal during fever.

    http://daedalus2u.blogspot.com/2008/01/resolution-of-asd-symptoms-with-fever.html

  53. #53 _Arthur
    February 12, 2009

    Edna, you wrote “Enough studies show they can find a form of the measles virus in biopsies of Crohn’s patients.”

    Can you give the references to 2 of those studies ? Thank you in advance.

  54. #54 Edna
    February 13, 2009

    “Can you give references to 2 of those studies?” I said clearly that enough studies show they can find a form of measles virus in biopsies of Crohn’s patients. I just checked a search engine and any idiot can find a large number of articles on the subject, so I doubt you needed me to find one for you. You want me to cite two, presumably to attack those articles and show other studies which couldn’t replicate the results. Simply because someone did not replicate a study, does not disprove anything. Especially with the small sampling sizes I noted in some studies. Personally, I don’t believe all cases of Crohn’s have the same cause anyway. There are, however, NO recorded cases of Crohn’s disease in children prior to 1971 MMR release. As far as where research is published: Hmmm…are some journals connected with the pharmaceutical industry in any way? Simple childhood illnesses – yes. Chris writes: “Measles kills one out of a thousand” “a dozen babies die in the US” – but that is only half the picture if you cannot compare to the number of vaccine related disabilities and deaths. You will not eradicate Chickenpox with a vaccine that only provides 80-85% immunity, (New England Journal of Medicine ’07 indicates immunity may wear off with time) even if you give exta jabs. I know as my oldest son, immunized and raised in the States, caught chickenpox 2 months ago. Hard on someone older. I’d rather my children catch chickenpox as a child because they will be fully immune for life, chickenpox for an adult is far more dangerous than shingles. Not too hard also to find cases of people catching shingles from the chickenpox vaccination, either immediately after or years later. I’m sure you’ll tell me I’m in error somehow. Anyway, be happy, this is my last post, you won’t have me annoying you anymore – I can’t bother with your attitudes. I can attest that there are indeed countries with different types of vaccination schedules as I now live on a lovely island far far from you. My youngest children have an entirely different upbringing. I see the young children, my own included, catch these mild diseases – slows them down a day or two, not worth the risk of the vaccination – and they are the healthiest kids I’ve seen world around. You will blame us for not being able to eradicate diseases no doubt. But what kind of dormant cancers are you giving your children?? Parents, if you want answers before vaccinating your children RESEARCH RESEARCH RESEARCH for yourself! It IS very important – you have a great responsibility in your choice. Think about who has something to lose here.

  55. #55 PalMD
    February 13, 2009

    …any idiot can find a large number of articles on the subject…

    Except, apparently, one.

  56. #56 Chris
    February 13, 2009

    Edna said “I just checked a search engine and any idiot can find a large number of articles on the subject, so I doubt you needed me to find one for you.”

    I noticed an interesting trend this week: When someone claims there are lots of studies and then asked to post them they all cry “Look them up yourself!”. I am assuming that those studies don’t really exist (or exist in only in forms that Edna thought we should accept, even when they do not follow the rules: http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/?p=337 )

  57. #57 abcdefg
    February 16, 2009

    Read a book a while ago that equated modern medicine with religion because it required blind faith.

    Vaccines contain plenty of known ingredients that are a bit worrisome. The package insert for tetanus:

    “BayTet® is made from human plasma. Products made from human plasma may contain infectious agents, such as viruses, that can cause disease. The risk that such products will transmit an infectious agent has been reduced by screening plasma donors for prior exposure to certain viruses, by testing for the presence of certain current virus infections, and by inactivating and/or removing certain viruses. Despite these measures, such products can still potentially transmit disease. There is also the possibility that unknown infectious agents may be present in such products. Individuals who receive infusions of blood or plasma products may develop signs and/or symptoms of some viral infections, particularly hepatitis C.”

    Gee, that sounds so perfectly safe. Any disease I might come down with would not come the day after the vaccination so would not get attributed to the vaccination.

    Also vaccinations contain secret ingredients protected by international trade law. Vaccine adjuvants contain mixed vegetable and animal oils that have trace amounts of protein.

    It has been known for 170 years that injecting animals with food protein causes a rather bad reaction. When the French guy did it way back when the animals were fine after the first shot but died after the second. Yet doctors are regularly injecting people without knowing all the ingredients in the shots.

    Food allergies are becoming a major problem in countries that vaccinate. 8% of young children have food allergies. 1 in 70 people in the UK have a serious peanut allergy. It is not a problem in the countries that don’t vaccinate. New Zealand is one of those countries that has pretty healthy children, low allergy rate AND a low vaccination rate.

    Young children are getting the most food allergies because they are getting alot of shots. When I was young, we got two vaccinations. Now children get 48 doses of 14 vaccines by age six and 53-56 doses of 15 or 16 vaccines by age 12. I found it interesting that in one of the allergy books written by Scott H. Sicherer, M.D. that he tells a young girl that she is unlikely to get food allergies after age 12. Gee, that’s when the childhood vaccine schedule ends! What a coincidence!

  58. #58 PalMD
    February 16, 2009

    I’ll hold off on addressing the rest of your idiocy for a second just to point out that BayTet is not a vaccine…you friggin idiot. It’s tetanus immune globulin, an injection used to treat high-risk tetanus exposure.

    Really, it’s a wonder that you still know how to breathe.

  59. #59 T. Bruce McNeely
    February 16, 2009

    abcdefg sez: When I was young, we got two vaccinations.

    Holy crap, how old ARE you?
    Smallpox vaccine dates from the 1800′s. Diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus vaccines are pre-WWII. Polio dates from 1956. There were boosters for these, too.

    Congratulations on your longevity. Must be the 2 vaccines that did it. (sarcasm off)

  60. #60 PalMD
    February 16, 2009

    Bruce, we’ve already established that aside from being able to get the first part of the alphabet correct, the commenter is basically a walking medulla.

  61. #61 The Perky Skeptic
    February 16, 2009

    ROFLOLs at “walking medulla!” It is my new favorite insult EVER!!! :D

  62. #62 walking medulla
    February 24, 2009

    Please address the trade secret ingredients in vaccines. I need more enlightenment. Please quote some studies proving that vaccines do not contain food protein and could not possibly cause food allergies.

  63. #63 HCN
    February 24, 2009

    Why? You are the one that brought up the assertions, it is up to you to prove them. And we cannot prove a negative.

    Why don’t you show us what studies show that the DTaP is more dangerous than diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis? Remember that pertussis still kills over a dozen American babies each year, and that number is increasing due to credulous idiots like you working hard to reduce the herd immunity needed to protect infants too young to be immunized. Your scientific evidence needs to be available in a journal I can read at my local medical school library.

  64. #64 PalMD
    February 24, 2009

    First, flu shots contain egg proteins and shoud not be given to people with egg allergy. Were not idiots. Second, prove to me that bubble yum does contain spider eggs.

  65. #65 HCN
    February 24, 2009

    Aagh… I forgot about eggs and vaccines. I was just telling my mother-in-law that one of the reasons that chickens are more affordable now is that Maurice Hilleman made a vaccine to prevent a bird virus, so that they could have a reliable source of eggs. I read that in the biography of him by Paul Offit (oh, and being cheap, it was a library book so I can’t check on the specific details).

    Anyway, I had just finished answering Jock Doubleday over on Orac’s blog. He has invoked the Illuminati! Fnord.

  66. #66 walking medulla
    February 25, 2009

    “First, flu shots contain egg proteins and should not be given to people with egg allergy. Were not idiots.”

    Have you ever considered that since flu shots contain egg proteins that they could CAUSE an egg allergy?

  67. #67 PalMD
    February 25, 2009

    WTF?

  68. #68 walking medulla
    February 27, 2009

    Yeah, CAUSE an egg allergy. Like the following…

    The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Food Allergies by Lee H. Freude, M.D., and Jeanne Rejaunier, Penguin Group, 2003

    pg 14:

    “In 1839, the French physiologist Francois Magendie (1783-1855), while investigating the effects of substances on living organisms, created allergylike symptoms in animals, and found that animals sensitized to egg white by injection died after a subsequent injection.”

    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1200/is_/ai_104730216
    Brandt and his colleagues induced an allergy to chicken eggs in a group of mice by injecting them with ovalbumin, an egg protein.

  69. #69 PalMD
    February 27, 2009

    http://scienceblogs.com/denialism/2008/11/allergies_of_the_first_kindtyp.php

    Gee, you really are just that stupid.

    The above link tells a bit about allergies, but the gist of it is that allergies, which we all experience to some extent, cannot occur without first encountering the antigen.

  70. #70 Chris
    February 27, 2009

    Wow, you find something from 1839…

    Now tell us the amount of egg protein in a vaccine versus how much Brandt injected in the mice. Make sure that you keep the units consistent.

  71. #71 walking medulla
    February 28, 2009

    First, the amount the Brandt injected just goes to show that injections of food protein can cause allergy.

    Second, vaccines have an adjuvant added which increases the body’s immune response to a smaller amount of protein.

    Third, Brandt objective was to cause allergy in all the mice.

    Fourth, I am not saying that every shot causes food allergy but enough of them do.

  72. #72 walking medulla
    February 28, 2009

    “the gist of it is that allergies, which we all experience to some extent, cannot occur without first encountering the antigen.”

    Exactly. And the first encounter can be a vaccination.

    http://www.faqs.org/patents/app/20080199491

    The above is a link for an adjuvant that can be used in vaccines.

    Sustained Release Vaccine Composition
    A non-liquid vaccine composition according to claim 87, including a component active against one or more disease pathogens selected from …Diphtheria-Tetanus, …DTaP, DTP, E coli, …Encephalitis, ….Hepatitis A, B,C,D,E,F, Hepatitis B/Hib, Herpes virus, Hib, Influenza, Japanese Encephalitis, Lyme disease, Measles, Measles-Rubella, Meningococcal, MMR, Mumps, …Rubella,…

    …Such other adjuvants that may be used include squalene and squalene, Adjuvant 65 (containing peanut oil, mannide monooleate and aluminium monostearate),…

    The above is just one example of an adjuvant. Peanut oil although purer than supermarket oil still has some peanut protein in it. Peanut allergy has been found in babies as young as 3 months old. In one case the mother had a nut allergy and hadn’t eaten nuts or peanuts or had them in the house. Baby was vaccinated. How else could it have had first exposure?

  73. #73 Danio
    February 28, 2009

    Peanut allergy has been found in babies as young as 3 months old. In one case the mother had a nut allergy and hadn’t eaten nuts or peanuts or had them in the house. Baby was vaccinated. How else could it have had first exposure?

    So….the most parsimonious explanation for this is…the vaccines contained peanut oil?
    The WTF factor of your comments is steadily increasing.

  74. #74 Dianne
    February 28, 2009

    Peanut allergy has been found in babies as young as 3 months old. In one case the mother had a nut allergy and hadn’t eaten nuts or peanuts or had them in the house. Baby was vaccinated. How else could it have had first exposure?

    I’ve heard it hypothesized that soy nuts may cross react with peanuts and that soy based formula may be associated with peanut allergies later in life. Also topical exposure to peanut oil on broken skin. Not sure if the evidence for either theory is so great, though.

    I don’t think the link you provided is a description of components in current vaccines in any case. For one thing, there is no hepatitis C vaccine as of yet. It sounds more like someone patenting an idea that they hope might work someday and patenting it for every conceivable use. So vaccines may some day contain peanut oil, but they don’t yet, as far as I know, and this link doesn’t prove that they do.

  75. #75 PalMD
    February 28, 2009

    medulla, the whole point of a vaccination is to induce an immune reaction. That. is. the. point.

    Type IV hypersensitivity (allergy) is a different kind of immune reaction, but similar in some ways. When a baby first has cows milk, for example, they will not usually have an allergic reaction, as they have never been sensitized to it. If they are going to have an allergy to cows milk, it will occur on subsequent exposures. This doesn’t mean that we avoid cows milk, pollen, or whatever…these things are ubiquitous. Allergy is a natural part of life.

  76. #76 walking medulla
    February 28, 2009

    I can’t provide a link for current components in vaccines because the exact ingredients for adjuvants and culture mediums are protected trade secrets. Physicians aren’t entitled to the information either.

    Evidently allergy is not a natural part of life. That is the whole point of the “hygiene theory”. People in underdeveloped countries don’t have the problem of food allergies.

    If the allergy immune response can be created in animals as the one study showed, then vaccination can create the same immune response to any food protein in the vaccine.

  77. #77 HCN
    February 28, 2009

    medulla said “I can’t provide a link for current components in vaccines because the exact ingredients for adjuvants and culture mediums are protected trade secrets.”

    What you can provide is some evidence that the vaccines actually cause more harm than the diseases. You see, there are over a dozen American babies each year that do not even get a chance to develop allergies because they are killed by a pertussis infection.

    The reason more and more American babies are dying from pertussis is that they need a certain level of herd immunity to keep that particular bacteria away from them, but that herd immunity is being eroded away by silly concerns about “secret ingredients” and spurious allergy allegations without any evidence to back them up.

    So provide some actual factual scientific evidence (of the type that can be found in a journal in my local medical school library) that the present DTaP vaccine causes more harm than pertussis, diphtheria and tetanus.

    (by the way, allergies do exist, and I am allergic to nickel and various pollens, yet I manage to live just fine)

  78. #78 Dianne
    February 28, 2009

    I can’t provide a link for current components in vaccines because the exact ingredients for adjuvants and culture mediums are protected trade secrets.

    If you suspect a particular potentially harmful ingredient, i.e. peanut oil, is being added and not declared, just get some vaccine and a mass spec: run the vaccine through and see if you get a reading consistent with nut oil. If not, no worries (well, ok, it’d be reasonable to do it 2 or 3 times to rule out false negatives). If so, then you’ll need to look further to confirm, but at least then you have evidence instead of just a vague conspiracy theory.

    As Pal mentioned earlier, not all immune reactions are created equal. In fact, one technique for dealing with allergies that are affecting someone’s quality of life or endangering them is to inject the antigen in question into the patient. This creates an IgG antibody which tends to down-regulate IgE (allergy producing) antibodies. So using peanut oil could potentially make children LESS likely to be allergic to peanuts–if there is even peanut oil in vaccines at all, a still unproven assertion.

  79. #79 walking medulla
    March 1, 2009

    This is a theory that we are discussing. A much better theory than the current “hygiene theory”. And I have presented good evidence. I haven’t found any evidence to refute the theory. I don’t have access to the medical databases that you do, nor do I have access to the tests you recommend.

    But why would anyone bother getting patents for medical adjuvants unless they expected to use them? And here you are a physician and you don’t know all the ingredients of the vaccines because of trade secret protection which they didn’t bother to tell you about in med school?

  80. #80 Dianne
    March 1, 2009

    WM: I think you’re confused about what a patent is. A patent isn’t a trade secret: a patent is, essentially, being granted the right to sue. Indeed, one can not both patent a formula and keep it a trade secret. Furthermore, if you’ve ever dealt with corporations or individuals who work on the cutting edge of technology at all, you’d know that they patent far more than is ever used–the point is to patent every part of your idea that might possibly by any stretch of the imagination make money for you some day. I am quite sure that the patent you referenced, for example, does not imply that mean that the company in question has a hepatitis C vaccine.

    Finally, about 10 seconds of google searching led me to a list of vaccine ingredients. So where does this claim of “secret ingredients” come from?

  81. #81 PublicHealthNurse
    March 7, 2009

    Hi. I am lucky enough to live in Canada where I can offer full vaccination schedules to any and all children. Free. No cost. I am bound to my provincial standards, schedules, and orders. I offer the best information available (from national standards, based on research). That said, you, the parent, are responsible for your decisions. I can only give you the information from my health department. I can point you towards responsible web sites. I can’t stop you from reading baloney from the internet (use your own definition for baloney). The best part is- I also can’t make you get vaccinated. You get to live with your own choices. You can vaccinate, not vaccinate, make up a new schedule for your kid. Why you would want to argue with me (lemming/interchangeable nurse person/handmaiden to satan) is beyond me. I guess it makes you feel better. Rest assured, when there is an outbreak of something, I will put my child into daycare on my day off, and head off to do my job. I have seen it all- the deaths from not vaccinating, the autism of uncertain cause, the thankful parent from a refugee camp newly arrived in Canada with babe in arms- happy to be able to vaccinate this baby- the younger sibbling of a child who succumbed to illness in camp. I have seen desperate people lined up to get their immunoglobulin after a Hep. A outbreak. The sterile husband who had mumps as a young man who wanted to seek fertility treatment so his bride could be the mother of his child. What is my rant about? There is good and bad out there. I am on the side of immunizing. And no- I dont get paid more if I say that. I voted with my son, I guess. He is vaccinated. His name is not Vector.

  82. #82 walking medulla
    March 8, 2009

    “Why you would want to argue with me (lemming/interchangeable nurse person/handmaiden to satan) is beyond me.”

    I posted on this site because this website says that you are self-proclaimed experts on vaccination and all the benefits. Who better to shoot holes in my theory that vaccinations are the main cause of food allergies? At the very least I expected you to present a new angle for me to investigate which one post did. So I looked into the use of injecting antigens to treat allergy. It isn’t done for food allergies because it is too dangerous. They are trying to develop non-allergenic peanut protein to use in the shots. And it is aluminum in the vaccine that increases the immune response – aluminum increase the IgE response of the body.

    I’m not out to argue. I’m here to collect an intelligent opposing viewpoint. Did I find one?

  83. #83 PalMD
    March 8, 2009

    If that is your argument, that vaccinations are the main cause of food allergies, then you better have some sort of actual hypothesis or data, because that’s a pretty radical assertion. Food allergies and vaccinations are not related phenomena.

  84. #84 perceval
    March 9, 2009

    Walking medulla, everybody on the internet has access to Entrez PubMed, the publicly available search interface to the peer-reviewed literature on medicine and related fields. This is where you can look up studies. NIH funded work can often be downloaded for free, as well.

  85. #85 Jane
    September 9, 2009

    I have never had a vaccine in my life. I’m now 24 and I haven’t even had a cold in three years. I feel very healthy and have never had ANY diseases for which numerous doctors have tried to shove the vaccines for down my or my mom’s throat over the years. 1 in 150 children have autism, yet no one knows what causes it?! Is that not the MOST absurd thing I’ve ever heard. Sounds like a massive sweep under the rug for the Pharmaceutical companies. And don’t even say that “vaccines aren’t in it for the profit”. BULL. I was at my ob/gyn today for an annual and he was pushing the Gardasil vaccine on me. Do you know how much it costs? Almost $400!

  86. #86 Ramel
    September 9, 2009

    Wow, anecdotal evidence of survival! That so totally discredits mordern medicine!!! Idiot…

  87. #87 CW
    September 9, 2009

    I have never had a vaccine in my life. I’m now 24 and …

    24? So you were, what, 17 when the comment thread you’re commenting in was last active?

    Leaping valiantly into the fray six months after your opponents have gone home, what a cunning strategy. Kudos.

  88. #88 Chris
    September 9, 2009

    It should also be noted that Miss Jane is protected from vaccine preventable diseases through herd immunity. Enough people in her community have been vaccinated, so diseases like measles, mumps, polio and diphtheria are not likely to infect her.

    Of course, tetanus is not so nice. It exists in the soil, and has been known to be transmitted through bug bites and even scratches from rose thorns.

  89. #89 Tsu Dho Nimh
    September 10, 2009

    @57 – That scary awful stuff (BayTet) is tetanus immune globulin, the stuff you give to people who have developed clinical signs of tetanus. It is given to them to prevent the toxin produced by the tetanus bacteris from killing the patient.

    Giving tetanus vaccinations to children, with regular boosters in adulthood, usually prevents the need for getting BayTet or similar products.

  90. #90 Chris
    September 11, 2009

    Tsu Dho Nimh, check the date of the comment. I doubt she is coming back to read this blog.

  91. #91 Keith Kelley
    September 28, 2009

    Wow! I’ve not long come onto this site, and have read quite a few comments. So far,the answers come back as expletives,suggestions of a moronic state,WTF?,loads of academia. Sounds a bit like – “I know it all already, ’cause the ‘Big Pharma’ funded Medical Science institutes told me so”.
    PalMD. is not that familiar to me,so my ‘judgement’ so far could be of the mark a bit.
    It mostly gets down to this – ‘for the believer, no proof is necessary.For the non believer, no proof is possible!

    Hope to make comment on some of the discussion material, later.
    (expletive shield is in place, so fire at will!)

    Cheers, Keith

  92. #92 Mum
    October 4, 2009

    What a hoot. One last lone comment, pharmabloggers so quick to attack/discredit after everyone else went home. Thank-you, your strategies are so glaringly obvious that it only opposes your aim. What do you do with all that money?? How’s the mirror?

  93. #93 Chris
    October 4, 2009

    Oh, wow… and so you come along and use the Pharma Shill Gambit!

    How original. Not!

  94. #94 Stéphane
    October 12, 2009

    Autism and Vaccination—The Current Evidence

    Lisa Miller, MD, MSPH 1 and Joni Reynolds, RN, MSN 1
    Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Denver, Colorado, USA
    Correspondence to lisa.miller@state.co.us, joni.reynolds@state.co.us, with a copy to the Editor: roxie.foster@UCDenver.edu
    KEYWORDS
    ASD • autism • immunization • MMR • measles • thimerosal • vaccine
    ABSTRACT
    PURPOSE. The purpose of this article is to review relevant background literature regarding the evidence linking thimerosal-containing vaccine and the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine to autism.

    CONCLUSIONS. Rigorous scientific studies have not identified links between autism and either thimerosal-containing vaccine or the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine.

    PRACTICE IMPLICATIONS. Nurses are often in the position of providing advice regarding vaccines in their formal practice areas as well as in their daily lives. Families need current and credible evidence to make decisions for their children. Excellent vaccine information resources are available online.

    First Received November 14, 2008; Revision received February 25, 2009; Accepted for publication March 16, 2009.

  95. #95 jon
    January 24, 2010

    All of us that understand how vaccines truly work and try to explain it here are wasting our time. This site is directly funded by Pharma and has been for years. Seed Media Group is the owner and even the original company starter now does presentations for Pharma. So this site is not about science, it’s about money and propaganda. Anytime you see someone citing studies done by a vaccine manufacturer that “prove” a vaccine is safe… you need to run away. If I started selling a pill that I said cured HIV and I did the study to prove that it worked and was safe and I had my own executives on the boards at the FDA to approve it…. would you believe me? I certainly hope not.

  96. #96 Chris
    January 24, 2010

    It is the totally unoriginal and very lame Pharma Shill Gambit!

  97. #97 Naomi
    March 27, 2010

    Jane – amazing, I know. Those Big Pharma types are all out to screw us. Why, do you know how much I was charged for my Gardasil shots? A whole ZERO DOLLARS! Fancy Big Pharma trying to rip me off by providing vaccinations for free!

    …Oh, wait.

    Being overcharged for vaccinations and pharmaceuticals is an American problem, not an Australian one. As best I can determine, the Australian vaccination schedule is somewhat smaller and slower than the American one. And – here’s the thing that’s going to BLOW YOUR MIND – Australia has Autism as well, at almost the exact same rate as America.

    Amazing.

  98. #98 TheDissenter
    March 28, 2010

    “A whole ZERO DOLLARS! Fancy Big Pharma trying to rip me off by providing vaccinations for free!”

    Surely you are not clueless enough to actually believe pharma does anything for ‘free’. The only way pharma can sell millions of the shots is to have it subsidized by the taxpayer. The cost is $360 per vaccination. Multiply that by how many people in the world will be forced to get it and you are talking about a HUGE number of taxpayers dollars being gifted to Merck.

  99. #99 Vicki
    March 29, 2010

    It’s encouraging to see so many socialists (syndicalists, maybe?) turning up to complain that the market affects what medical treatment we can get.

    I wonder how many of them extend their socialism to their own work. Do TheDissenter and those like them give away all their own work? Do they assume that their clothing, food, and homes must be defective because they pay for them?