EVERYTHING You Need to Know About Vaccines (based on the scientific research)

I first want to premise this article by saying, I do not consider it my place to tell anyone whether to vaccinate or not. I firmly believe that we all deserve the right to choose when it comes to any kind of medical procedure performed on us or medication that will be put into our bodies.  I also believe that we have the right to be thoroughly and adequately informed of all of the risks and benefits of any procedure that will be performed on us so that we can make the best choice for ourselves.  As a healthcare professional, I strongly support a person’s right to make an adequately informed choice on any procedure that affects their health.  Our health is our responsibility, and it is the personal responsibility of each and every parent to do their own research and not be afraid to ask tough questions when it comes to the health of their child.

Healthy alternatives/additions to vaccination resources offered at the end of this article…

That being said, I know there are a lot of misinformation, political ideations, conflicts of interest, personal agendas, and hotly contested “beliefs” on vaccines.  I have no intention of taking any side on the vaccine “argument,” or getting involved in any debates.  My only intention here is to share with you the most comprehensive compilation that I can create for you on the scientific research, and/or lack thereof, for the safety, efficacy, and validity of vaccines and the vaccine theory itself.  I am solely sharing this out of a deep love and compassion that I have for parents who are genuinely concerned about the health of their children.  My goal is to share a brief history of vaccines and target the main points of vaccine logic and the science behind those concepts.  What you do with this information is completely up to you.  I will allow you to draw your own conclusions.

SICK CHILDREN AND SICK NATION

We are raising the most chronically sick generation of children to ever walk the face of this planet, and for the first time in our history, we will outlive our children. 1 out of every 2 children born in America develop some type of chronic health disability (asthma, mental disability, auto-immune disease, etc.), and when compared to the rest of the world, the US has the highest risk that a child will die before the age of five, cancer is the #1 killer of our children, we rank 39th in the world for infant mortality, and our healthcare system ranks 37th in the world according to this article in The New England Journal of Medicine (and we are falling farther and farther behind every year): Ranking 37th — Measuring the Performance of the U.S. Health Care System

 The major question we need to be asking is: What are we doing wrong, and what can we do differently?

Now I’m not saying that vaccines are solely responsible for this poor health epidemic in our children (air/water pollution, processed/chemical laden foods, and toxic chemical pollutants all play a role), but they certainly cannot be ruled out as an important piece of the puzzle. If a parent chooses to follow the current Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommended vaccine schedule, by the age of 18 months, their child will receive the same number of vaccinations that they did by the time they graduated high school. According to the current CDC guidelines, a child now receives 49 doses of 14 different vaccines before the age of 6 and 69 doses of 16 vaccines by the age of 18. There are more vaccinations in the works, and this number is only expected to increase. This is certainly an issue that cannot be overlooked or “assumed as safe” without more quality research.

Picture1

Here is a great short video by a highly credentialed scientist from MIT that starts the discussion question:

MY STORY

As a 911 paramedic on an ambulance for the past 10 years, I once believed that vaccination was a modern medicine miracle that was saving thousands of lives around the world.  That’s what I was taught in school, that’s what the media portrays everywhere, that’s what we hear from our government officials, and that’s what most everyone in the medical profession told me. Several years ago, before I ever did any research on vaccines or educated myself on the science behind immunity, I, like so many other parents, was instructed by a pediatrician to get my newborn daughter vaccinated, which I did.  However, after doing so, something about the whole procedure in my gut just didn’t feel right.  No doctor or nurse ever explained to us what vaccines they were injecting into my daughter; nobody ever explained the ingredients of those vaccines; nobody ever explained or expressed that their might be any kind of risks, complications, or side effects from getting the vaccines or what to do if there were; nobody ever explained how the vaccines even work; and nobody ever explained how they were going to perform the procedure to us at all.  A nurse just came into the room with a syringe and needle and shot my daughter in the leg several times while she wasn’t looking.  Now that I am more educated, I know that it is my responsibility to ask those questions about the drugs and procedures that are being performed on my children and me, but I can only imagine how many unsuspecting parents have gone through a similar experience.  Nevertheless, because I was trained to believe that vaccines are perfectly safe, I never thought to stop and question the procedure. Afterwards, when I had time to sit back and think about the whole process, the whole procedure seemed very fishy to me (my BS detector was ringing loud and clear!), and that’s when I decided that I would do some research for myself.

I am a scientific research student at heart, and this article is a compilation of all of the research that I have collected over the past few years since that time. I know it is very hard (virtually impossible) to find any unbiased information on vaccines that is not fueled by pharmaceutical money, major conflicts of interest, or alternative agendas, but I will do my best to present everything I have found from my journey as a vaccine supporter to who I am today.

FASTFORWARD TO TODAY

A while ago, a colleague, friend of mine and I were having a candid discussion on vaccines, and he posed some very good questions.  I shared with him the following graph, and the following are his questions:

Picture1

1) Can you provide references for that graph?

2) Placebo studies would likely be unethical and never pass IRB. And besides, we don’t need placebo studies. These are populations-based, public health type studies. We can take cross-sectional and prospective studies and see very clearly the effectiveness and safety of vaccines. Just look at the infectious disease rates in countries that don’t have the type of vaccination we do. Look at the recent measles outbreaks.

3) Why is every public health organization and the overwhelming majority of doctors pro-vaccination?

4) What do you think is the danger of vaccination? 

5) Don’t the obvious benefits outweigh these perceived dangers by far?

Facts from WHO: Measles vaccination resulted in a 75% drop in measles deaths between 2000 and 2013 worldwide.

Measles vaccination prevented an estimated 15.6 million deaths. – WHO

I’m thankful that he brought up these questions, and I’m glad that he, unlike most other people, is acutely aware to ask such important questions. Most people just blindly accept drugs, prescriptions, surgeries, and vaccinations from the “medical professionals” that offer and suggest them, without ever getting informed about all of the risks and benefits of these critical health procedures. These are all things that we need to be aware of when making the choice if vaccination is right for our children and us.  I will address each question to the best of my ability with scientific resources supporting each answer.

1)  Can you provide references for that graph?

The references are listed at the top of the graph: “Vital Statistics of the United States”, but here is a more detailed explanation:

Let the EVIDENCE speak: Did Vaccines Save Us?

Retrieved from: Did Vaccines Save Us?

There is a perception out there that vaccines saved us from the deadly diseases of the 19th and 20th centuries. But did they?

Please review the evidence below.

You will see that in developed nations, mortality from these diseases declined dramatically before vaccines came in, with the trend heading downward (smallpox and polio excepted, they have different stories). This was largely even before antibiotics were widely used.

Vaccine protagonists argue we can see the worth of vaccines better by looking at graphs showing disease incidence (morbidity), rather than by looking at mortality. However death rates give us the most accurate picture of what is going on—incidence data only includes reported cases, and many cases of disease are never reported, but deaths usually are.

Also, although incidence data show declining disease rates after introduction of some vaccines, this is not significant if those diseases had become mild in the vast majority of cases anyway, due to improvements in the health of populations.

If the slope of a mortality graph is pointing downwards for a long time with no vaccine, it’s reasonable to expect it would continue to go down if not interfered with, and that serious side effects of the disease would be declining too.

– – click to enlarge – –

England and Wales measles mortality 1839 to 1978.

England and Wales measles mortality 1839 to 1978

US measles mortality 1900 to 1988.

US measles mortality 1900 to 1988

England and Wales whooping cough mortality rate, 1838 to 1978.

England and Wales whooping cough mortality rate, 1838 to 1978.

(Record of mortality in England and Wales for 95 years as provided by the Office of National Statistics, published 1997; Report to The Honourable Sir George Cornewall Lewis, Bart, MP, Her Majesty’s Principal Secretary of State for the Home Department, June 30, 1860, pp. a4, 205; Essay on Vaccination by Charles T. Pearce, MD, Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England; Parliamentary Papers, the 62nd Annual Return of the Registrar General 1899 (1891–1898))

Whooping cough (pertussis) mortality Australia 1870 to 1970

Whooping cough (pertussis) mortality Australia 1870 to 1970

Graph from Fooling Ourselves: on the fundamental value of vaccines by Greg Beattie

Diphtheria mortality, in England and Wales. Diphtheria vaccination began in 1920, and became widespread in the 1940s.

Diphtheria mortality England and Wales

Diphtheria mortality UK vs USA. An early form of the diphtheria vaccine in limited use from 1920, widespread vaccination early 1940s (UK), late 1940s (USA).

Diphtheria mortality, UK vs USA

 

Mumps mortality in England and Wales, 1901 to 1999 (mumps vaccination started 1988, in MMR)

mumps uk 1900-1999

England and Wales mortality for measles, scarlet fever, whooping cough (pertussis), diphtheria and smallpox, 1838 to 1978. Note – there was no vaccine for scarlet fever.

England and Wales mortality for measles, scarlet fever, whooping cough (pertussis), diphtheria and smallpox (there was no vaccine for scarlet fever)

United States mortality rates from various infectious diseases from 1900 to 1965. Notice the diphtheria and typhoid graphs almost match each other, despite the fact there was no widespread use of a typhoid vaccine. There was no vaccine for scarlet fever.

United States mortality rates from various infectious diseases from 1900 to 1965

(Vital Statistics of the United States 1937, 1938, 1943, 1944, 1949, 1960, 1967, 1976, 1987, 1992; Historical Statistics of the United States— Colonial Times to 1970 Part 1; Health, United States, 2004, US Department of Health and Human Services; Vital Records & Health Data Development Section, Michigan Department of Community Health; US Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2003; Reported Cases and Deaths from Vaccine Preventable Diseases, United States, 1950–2008)

Massachusetts tuberculosis, diphtheria, typhoid, measles, and smallpox mortality rates from 1861 to 1970 (although US national records did not begin until 1900, records in some areas began earlier, and give us a chance to see what was going on before 1900). There was no widespread use of a vaccine for typhoid.

Massachusetts mortality rates 1861-1970 (there was no widespread use of a vaccine for typhoid)

(Historical Statistics of the United States—Colonial Times to 1970 Part 1, Bureau of the Census, p. 63)

FRANCE measles mortality rate. Note – measles vaccination rate was less than 20% in 1983 and less than 40% in 1989.

France measles mortality 1906-1999

US influenza and pneumonia mortality rates 1900 to 2002, vaccination was introduced early 1970s
Note – In the US, influenza and pneumonia are bundled together, because influenza leads to pneumonia, and the exact cause of death cannot be determined.

US influenza and pneumonia mortality rates 1900 to 2002, vaccination was introduced early 1970s

Above graph magnified, 1960 to 2002, includes vaccine coverage in blue

US influenza and pneumonia mortality rates 1960 to 2002, with vaccine coverage

This is what US investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson wrote in 2014:

“An important and definitive “mainstream” government study done nearly a decade ago got little attention because the science came down on the wrong side. It found that after decades and billions of dollars spent promoting flu shots for the elderly, the mass vaccination program did not result in saving lives. In fact, the death rate among the elderly increased substantially.”
Read it here: Govt. Researchers: Flu Shots Not Effective in Elderly, After All

In Australia, flu deaths are estimated by calculating a fixed percentage of deaths of people aged 50 and over, would you believe it. (One percentage for ages 50-64, another for 65 and over). Source. This means every single person over 49 who dies contributes to the so-called number of flu deaths.

Australian flu deaths is estimated to be around 3,500 annually, by the way. This article Flu-related deaths triple in NSW proclaiming flu deaths in NSW had tripled that year, published August 2016, demonstrates a truer number – the most populous state in Australia had only 45 flu deaths by that late stage of the year, so how could the whole country have had 3,500?

And flu pandemics?

In 2011 Professor Collignon, professor of microbiology at the Australian National University and director of infectious diseases at Canberra Hospital, had this to say, regarding Australia’s 2009 swine flu episode:

“What was a bit surprising when we looked at some of the data from Canada and Hong Kong in the last year is that people who have been vaccinated in 2008 with the seasonal or ordinary vaccine seemed to have twice the risk of getting swine flu compared to the people who hadn’t received that vaccine.

“Some interesting data has become available which suggests that if you get immunised with the seasonal vaccine, you get less broad protection than if you get a natural infection.

“It is particularly relevant for children because it is a condition they call original antigenic sin, which basically means if you get infected with a natural virus, that gives you not only protection against that virus but similar viruses or even in fact quite different flu viruses in the next year.

“We may be perversely setting ourselves up that if something really new and nasty comes along, that people who have been vaccinated may in fact be more susceptible compared to getting this natural infection.

Source: Vaccines may have increased swine flu risk (ABC)

Listen to audio of Peter Collignon speaking (highly recommended) New Controversy Surrounding Flu Vaccination

Tetanus mortality England and Wales 1901 to 1999. Vaccine widespread in late 1940s.
Note – The numbers of farm labourers fell by half after the second world war, and the increase in mechanisation reduced the chances of the types of  injuries likely to result in tetanus.

Tetanus mortality England and Wales 1901 to 1999. Vaccine widespread in late 1940s.

From the CDC (US gov):
“Tetanus is not contagious from person to person. It is the only vaccine-preventable disease that is infectious but not contagious.”
and
A marked decrease in mortality from tetanus occurred from the early 1900s to the late 1940s. In the late 1940s, tetanus toxoid was introduced into routine childhood immunization”
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/tetanus.pdf

Meningitis in Australia

The Hib vaccine was introduced  in 1993 in Australia to combat bacterial meningitis – bacterial meningitis can be caused by a wide variety of bacteria but the Hib bacterium was the predominant one found in bacterial meningitis cases at the time. The Hib vaccine reduced the incidence of Hib infections significantly in just two years, and Australian health officials are very fond of promoting this.

However the next two graphs show the Hib vaccine made no difference to the rate of decline in meningitis deaths—there are unlimited species and strains of bacteria that could cause meningitis in a susceptible individual, so others take the place of those removed by vaccination.

To remove a few strains of bacteria causing meningitis and say a vaccine has been successful, when the rate of meningitis deaths has not been affected, is fanciful.

Meningitis all ages in Australia, 1907 to 2007

Meningitis in Australia in the under fives.

Meningitis Australia under fives, 1960 to 2006

Australian graphs are from Fooling Ourselves: on the fundamental value of vaccines by Greg Beattie

* * *

Two diseases with “a different story”

1. Polio

“Polio” is short for “poliomyelitis”, which means “inflammation of the grey matter” affecting the grey matter in the spinal cord and sometimes the brain stem. This inflammation can cause paralysis, usually temporarily, and then it is called “paralytic poliomyelitis”.

When the polio vaccine came into use in 1955, polio was officially defined as being caused by poliovirus, an enterovirus that had circulated freely through our gut since ancient times.

Unlike other diseases that vaccines get the credit for fixing, the first serious US polio outbreak occured in 1894, there was a major epidemic in 1916, then things got worse in the 30s, 40s and early 50s. What could have caused this mysterious appearance at a time when mortality from other infectious diseases had declined a great deal?

Pesticides lead arsenate and DDT, interacting with a virus or viruses, is a strong candidate. It is possible the pesticides were damaging nerves, allowing the entry of normally-harmless enteroviruses.

In the US, lead arsenate was first widely used in 1893 in Boston, and the first larger cluster of polio happened there that summer (26 cases), then the first major epidemic (132 cases, 18 deaths) occurred in Vermont the following summer, in 1894, the year the formula for lead arsenate was first published, by Vermont’s state entomologist. Source.

Summer was the time fruit crops were sprayed with insecticides.

Polio-DDT-ad

(Before 1950, DDT was hailed as a miracle of progress that was virtually non-toxic to humans, in spite of FDA’s warnings and attempts to keep it off the market. This photo on the left is one of several similar photos from Zimmerman, et al, DDT: Killer of Killers (1946). The advertisement on the right is from an unknown source, though it appears to be circa 1954.)

DDT wallpaper

DDT was sprayed around freely in the 1940s and early 1950s. It is still used in India, some African countries and elsewhere (DDT).

The evidence does show the polio vaccine eliminated outbreaks of polio associated with poliovirus in the US and other countries. However, before the vaccine, polio was usually diagnosed without a pathology test for poliovirus – it was common for doctors to diagnose ‘poliovirus’ so patients could get health funding.

Therefore other enteroviruses besides poliovirus may well have been causing poliomyelitis, or polio may have been simply caused by pesticides without the involvement of a virus (although the fact that polio vaccines lead to many cases of paralysis does point to the involvement of a virus).

These considerations have ramifications that continue today, in both developed nations where there are still outbreaks of paralysing “polio-like” illness and in third-world nations.

After vaccination was introduced in 1955, a strict pathology test was required to confirm a patient had polio. Also, at this point the definition of polio changed—paralysis had to last for 60 days instead of just 24 hours, and non-paralytic cases were no longer called polio.

These factors lowered the number of polio cases significantly, making it look like the vaccine was very successful. We should also note the book ‘Silent Spring’, which was influencial in DDT use in agriculture being banned, came out in 1962.

Sister Kenny Polio Patient Stands

Note – Australian nurse Sister Kenny successfully treated polio paralysis of limbs with hot packs, massage and gentle movement, instead of with long-term immobilisation, cutting tendons, painful electric treatment and braces.

This earned her condemnation by the medical establishment and gratititude from the people she helped recover. Sources

An Australian outback doctor, Dr. Archie Kalokerinos, who visited polio victims on farms, noticed children played in drums of “cottonfield spray”.

2. Smallpox

Smallpox vaccination began around 1798. It was a disgusting, unclean practice and many people died from it—the arm was sliced open and pus from an infected cow’s udder was rubbed into the wounds (a practice that persisted for over 100 years, with fresh pus being replaced by dried cowpox scabs later in the 19th century).

National mortality records began in 1838 in England and Wales, and 1900 in the US, so we have no before and after evidence for the effect of this vaccine.

Doctors at the time were enthusiastic, and pushed for laws making vaccination mandatory, in 1853 and 1868 in England. But we should note they were making good money from it, and they were the same generation of doctors who refused to wash their hands between autopsies and internal examinations in women in birthing hospitals, causing high childbirth death rates, believing a gentleman’s hands could not spread disease (the idea that germs caused disease was not promoted by Louis Pasteur till the 1860s, and there was resistance to it by doctors). See Semmelweis reflex or look here:Postpartum infections and look under History.

The following figure shows England and Wales smallpox and scarlet fever deaths 1838 to 1922 (sources below). Note – there was no vaccine for scarlet fever, but it declined dramatically anyway (and the bacterium causes strep throat today), suggesting smallpox declined by itself as living and working conditions improved.

Also, the 1870 smallpox outbreak was the worst outbreak in England ever, and occurred afer 70 years of vaccination with 100% coverage in many areas, demonstrating smallpox vaccination was of no use whatsoever.

England and Wales smallpox and scarlet fever deaths 1838 to 1922

(Record of mortality in England and Wales for 95 years as provided by the Office of National Statistics, published 1997; Report to The Honourable Sir George Cornewall Lewis, Bart, MP, Her Majesty’s Principal Secretary of State for the Home Department, June 30, 1860, pp. a4, 205; Written answer by Lord E. Percy to Parliamentary question addressed by Mr. March, MP, to the Minister to Health on July 16, 1923; Essay on Vaccination by Charles T. Pearce, MD, Member of the Royal College of Surgeons of England)

England and Wales smallpox deaths vs. deaths from the smallpox vaccine from 1906 to 1922 (source below).

UK Smallpx vs smallpox vaccine deaths 1906 to 1922

(Written answer by Lord E. Percy to Parliamentary question addressed by Mr. March, MP, to the Minister to Health on July 16, 1923)

* * *

Should we be afraid?

This graphic shows the odds of dying from measles in 1962, the year before the measles vaccine came in, along with odds of dying from various causes in year 2000, in the US.

measles-OddsOfDeath

If you are told we should be worried about “vaccine-preventable” diseases because they have dangerous side effects, please know these are extremely rare. See what some health officials said before vaccines were introduced:

Measles

This is a report from the US Public Health Service’s National Communicable Disease Center, Atlanta, discussing the introduction of widespread measles vaccination in 1967, after 4 years of testing.
Epidemiologic basis for eradication of measles in 1967.

Epidemiologic basis for eradication of measles in 1967.

“Complications are infrequent, and, with adequate medical care, fatality is rare. Susceptibility to the disease after the waning of maternal immunity is universal; immunity following recovery is solid and lifelong in duration.”

So why did they make the measles vaccine?

Dr. Alexander Langmuir, the father of modern day epidemiology and a strong supporter for development of the measles vaccine, wrote in 1962:

To those who ask me, ‘Why do you wish to eradicate measles?’ I reply with the same answer that [Sir Edmund] Hilary used when asked why he wished to climb Mt. Everest. He said “because it is there.” To this may be added “And it can be done.”

Langmuir didn’t say: “Because it’s maiming thousands with blindness and encephalitis and killing hundreds.” (thanks RB & SH)

Source: A. Langmuir, “The Importance of Measles as a Health Problem,” American Journal of Public Health, vol. 52, no. 2, 1962, pp. 1–4.

The following video shows measles was considered a mild disease in the 1960s (before the vaccine) – it’s doubtful they would have made jokes like these about diphtheria, before diphtheria vaccination became widespread.

There’s one thing wrong in some of these clips: adults rarely got measles, because unlike today, the vast majority had life-long immunity from getting it as a child, and from getting “boosters” from exposure to the measles virus in the people around them – the populaton had a natural life-long immunity.

Also see this article:

These 1959 Reports Show Measles Was Considered a ‘Mild Infection’

And mumps?

Freedom of Information documents show the UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation and Ministry of Defence agreed as early as 1974 that:

“there was no need to introduce routine vaccination against mumps” because “complications from the disease were rare” JCVI minutes 11 Dec 1974.

From the British National Formulary 1985 and 1986 (the BNF is a joint publication of the British Medical Association and RPSGB):

“Since mumps and its complications are very rarely serious there is little indication for the routine use of mumps vaccine”

Chicken Pox?

Chicken pox vaccine is on the schedule in the US and Australia, but few other countries. This information page from the UK National Health Service explains they don’t vaccinate children for chicken pox because chicken pox vaccination leads to more shingles in older people (chicken pox and shingles are caused by exactly the same virus).
Chickenpox vaccine FAQs

Chickenpox is a mild and common illness that most children catch at some point

the vast majority of children recover quickly and easily

If you vaccinate children against chickenpox, you lose this natural boosting so current levels of immunity in adults will drop and more shingles will occur.

For more on this, see post on this website: Please Ban Chicken Pox Vaccination In Australia, Like In The UK

Professor Fiona Stanley

Professor Fiona Stanley is a children’s medical researcher based in Perth, and she was Australian of the Year for children’s health in 2003. She wrote the following in her summary document of public health ‘Child Health Since Federation’ in 2001, pp 370, 378 & 379:

Infectious Deaths fell before widespread vaccination was implemented.

The rates of infectious diseases in Australia were very low from 1950 to 2000 and the majority of the fall in the under 5 mortality rates (80%) had occurred by 1960: prior to the introduction and widespread use of the majority of vaccines.

Pediatrics, 2000

While in America, the following statement appears in this review of health in the 20th century, in the journal Pediatrics: Annual Summary of Vital Statistics: Trends in the Health of Americans During the 20th Century (Pages 1313-5)

Thus vaccination does not account for the impressive decline in mortality seen in the first half of the century.

 

2) No need for randomized trials on vaccines. Just look at population studies on vaccinated populations vs. unvaccinated populations.

The idea that we don’t need to do randomized, placebo-controlled studies on drugs to test for their safety and efficacy before injecting them in humans is a ludicrous idea.  Vaccines are drugs, and there is no reason we should be treating them any differently than any other drug on the market.

Now the FDA and the vaccine manufacturers will say, “Yes we have tested our vaccines, and we know that they are effective 95% of the time and completely safe.”  However, this is where their science begins to get very lopsided and screwy.  Virtually all of the safety and efficacy studies that have ever been done on vaccines (especially the ones that are printed on vaccine insert labels) are funded by the pharmaceutical companies that produce the vaccines themselves (conflict of interest anyone?).  And unlike any other drugs out there, vaccines are automatically considered “safe” until proven otherwise instead of the other way around.

Another primary problem is that the vast majorities of these studies have severe conflicts of interest and are not solid in their research methods.  They are either funded by the pharmaceutical companies themselves or the government agencies that are recommending their widespread use.  Here are a few examples:

http://www.fourteenstudies.org/studies.html

Now some people, like my dear friend here, say that we don’t need to do efficacy testing on vaccines because we can just look at the population at large and see that the diseases we vaccinate against are virtually non-existent now and we can directly tie that to vaccines.  Or can we?

If we look at large population studies, we can also draw strong connections to the increased vaccination rate and the dramatic increase in infant mortality and poor health in our children.  Here is one of those peer-reviewed articles:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3170075/

This is the most alarming conclusion: “nations that require more vaccine doses tend to have higher infant mortality rate.”

HERD IMMUNITY: SCIENCTIFIC THEORY OR MYTH?

Article accessed from: Herd Immunity: Myth or Reality?

Herd immunity is not an immunologic idea, but rather an epidemiologic construct, which theoretically predicts successful disease control when a certain pre-calculated percentage of people in the population are immune from disease.  A scholarly article on herd immunity states:

“Along with the growth of interest in herd immunity, there has been a proliferation of views of what it means or even of whether it exists at all. Several authors have written of data on measles, which “challenge” the principle of herd immunity and others cite widely divergent estimates (from 70 to 95 percent) of the magnitude of the herd immunity threshold required for measles eradication.”[1]

Herd immunity has been deemed instrumental in rapid disease eradication.  Relying upon the meticulous work of Dr. A. W. Hedrich, who documented annual measles attack rates in relation to the proportion of naturally immune people in the 1900s-1930s, the United States Public Health Service had confidently announced in 1967 its intent to swiftly eradicate measles in the USA over the Winter by vaccinating a sufficient number of still susceptible children.[2] Mass vaccination was implemented, but the expected herd-immunity effect did not materialize and measles epidemics did not stop in 1967.

The concept of herd immunity has been used to justify the idea of vaccinating children against a mild disease, who do not personally benefit from such vaccination, to protect a vulnerable but vaccine-ineligible segment of the population.  For example, rubella is not dangerous for children.  However, for pregnant women who have not become immune from rubella prior to pregnancy, a rubella infection poses a danger during the first trimester by increasing the risk of fetal developmental abnormalities (congenital rubella).  Obviously, vaccination with a live-attenuated viral vaccine, such as the rubella vaccine, is contraindicated during pregnancy.

Perhaps with the good intention to immediately put an end to any risk of congenital rubella in their community, elementary-school children were vaccinated en mass against rubella in 1970 in Casper, Wyoming.  Ironically, nine months after this local vaccination campaign, an outbreak of rubella hit Casper.  The herd-immunity effect did not materialize and the outbreak involved over one thousand cases and reached several pregnant women.  The perplexed authors of the study describing this outbreak wrote:

“The concept that a highly immune group of pre-pubertal children will prevent the spread of rubella in the rest of the community was shown by this epidemic not always to be valid.”[3]

The belief in herd immunity has no doubt been influencing vaccine-related legislation in many U.S. states and other countries.  This notion is used as a trump card to justify and mandate legal measures aiming to increase vaccination compliance.  An implicit assumption is that liberal vaccine exemptions somehow compromise this precious herd immunity, which the public-health authorities strive to establish and maintain via vaccination.

Herd Immunity, a Flawed Concept

Although the evidence for vaccination-based herd immunity is yet to materialize, there is plenty of evidence to the contrary.  Just a single publication by Poland & Jacobson (1994) reports on 18 different measles outbreaks throughout North America, occurring in school populations with very-high vaccination coverage for measles (71% to 99.8%).  In these outbreaks, vaccinated children constituted 30% to 100% of measles cases.  Many more similar outbreaks, occurring after 1994, can be found by searching epidemiologic literature.

Before the 1990s, only a single dose of the measles vaccine was on the childhood schedule in North America.  Frequent occurrence of measles outbreaks in highly vaccinated communities have been blamed by the medical establishment on what they thought was a failure-prone, single-shot vaccination strategy.  The second MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) shot was introduced in the United States and Canada in the 1990s, followed by the elimination of the endemic measles virus from North America by 2002.

In 2011, an imported measles outbreak – and the largest in the post-elimination era – hit a community in Quebec, Canada with 95-97% measles vaccination compliance in the era of double vaccination against measles.  If double vaccination is not enough to patch those alleged vaccine failures and ensure the elusive herd immunity, should we then look forward to triple (or, might as well, quadruple) MMR vaccination strategy to see how that might work out with respect to herd immunity?  Or, should we instead re-examine the herd immunity concept itself?

The herd-immunity concept is based on a faulty assumption that vaccination elicits in an individual a state equivalent to bona fide immunity (life-long resistance to viral infection).  As with any garbage in-garbage out type of theory, the expectations of the herd-immunity theory are bound to fail in the real world.

Ochsenbein et al. (2000) conducted an experiment in mice, in which they compared the effect of injecting mice with two preparations of the vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV).  They immunized mice with either unmodified VSV (live virus) or ultraviolet light-inactivated VSV incapable of replication (dead virus).  Then they tested the capacity of the serum from the two groups of immunized animals to neutralize live VSV over the 300 days following immunization.

The injection of the live-virus preparation induced long-lasting virus-neutralization capacity of the serum in mice, which persisted for the whole duration of the study (300 days).  In contrast, the injection of the dead-virus preparation induced much lower levels of virus-neutralizing serum titers to start with.  Virus-neutralizing serum titers reached a peak at 20 days post-immunization and then started to wane rapidly.  They went below the level detectable by the neutralization test by the end of the study period (300 days).  The conclusion of this experiment was that a procedure that attenuates or inactivates the virus also diminishes its ability to induce long-lasting virus-neutralizing serum titers upon immunization of animals.

Vaccines against viral childhood diseases are similarly prepared by first isolating the virus from a sick person, then rendering it artificially attenuated or inactivated to make a vaccine.  The attenuation or inactivation of a wild virus to become a vaccine-strain virus is done to reduce the likelihood of it inducing the disease symptoms or complications, although this happens anyway in some cases.  The process of attenuation, while making a vaccine virus “safer” than the original wild virus, as far as disease symptoms are concerned, also limits the durability of vaccine protection.  In fact, all vaccines are by necessity either attenuated or inactivated microorganisms or their isolated pieces mixed with adjuvants; and, therefore, the protective effect of any vaccine is bound to wane sooner or later.

The protective threshold for measles-virus neutralizing serum titers in humans is known.[4] Also known is the duration of time after vaccination with MMR when measles-virus neutralizing serum titers drop below the protective level in a segment of the population. [5]

The Boston University Measles Study

In 1990, a blood drive was conducted among the students of Boston University a month before the campus was hit with a measles outbreak.  Due to these natural circumstances, researchers happened to have access to blood samples of many students who either got measles or were spared from the disease during the outbreak.  The levels of measles virus-neutralizing serum titers were appropriately measured by the plaque reduction neutralization (PRN) technique, a month prior to and two months after the exposure.  Pre-exposure PRN titers were then correlated with the degree of protection from measles: (1) no detectable infection or disease; (2) serologically confirmed measles infection with a modified clinical course of disease; or (3) full-blown measles.  By the way, eight out of nine students who ended up getting full-blown measles, had been vaccinated against measles in their childhood.

The outcome of the Boston University measles outbreak study by Chen et al. (1990) was the following:

(a) In all previously vaccinated students who experienced full-blown measles, pre-exposure PRN titers were below 120;

(b) 70% of students whose pre-exposure PRN titers were between 120 and 1052, ended up having a serologically confirmed measles infection, but since their altered disease symptoms did not conform to the clinical measles case definition, they were categorized as non-cases during the outbreak; and

(c) Students with pre-exposure PRN titers in excess of 1052 were for the most part protected both from the typical clinical disease and measles infection.

During the outbreak, many students with pre-exposure PRN titers between 120 and 1052, who were officially categorized as non-cases, nevertheless had most of the viral-disease symptoms, including cough, photophobia, headache, and fever.  These “non-cases” ended up with high post-exposure measles PRN titers, just as the disease cases did, suggesting that they were able to replicate the virus during their illness and possibly transmit it.

Subsequent Measles Vaccine Observations

A study by LeBaron et al. (2007) was conducted to determine the duration of measles virus-neutralization serum titers after the receipt of the second MMR shot.  The study enrolled several hundred healthy Caucasian children from rural U.S. areas free of measles outbreaks for the duration of the study.  About a quarter of these children generated relatively high titers in response to vaccination, although not nearly as high as the titers after a natural infection would be.  The rest responded modestly, and some very poorly.  The titers in all children, regardless of being high, moderate, or low, reached a peak in a month after the MMR booster, then came down in six months to the pre-booster levels and continued to decline gradually over the next 5-10 years of observation.

In the above study, only about a top quarter of children (called high responders) were able to maintain PRN titers in excess of 1000 units 10 years following their second MMR shot, received at the age of five.  These children are therefore likely to still be protected from the measles infection by the time they are adolescents.

The least-efficient vaccine responders (bottom 5%) had their PRN titers fall below 120 units within 5-10 years after the second MMR shot.  This percentage of vaccinated children is expected to have full-blown, clinically identifiable measles upon exposure when they get a bit older.  This is the reason why vaccinated (and even twice-vaccinated) people show up as disease cases in numbers equal to or even exceeding the unvaccinated cases in communities with very high (>95%) vaccination coverage.  Rapid loss of vaccine protection in low responders is the reason for the paradox of a “vaccine-preventable” disease becoming the disease of the vaccinated in highly vaccinated communities.  Such disease cases (and outbreaks driven by them) are not due to random vaccine failures, they are anticipated vaccine failures.

For the majority of children, the PRN titers fall between 120 and 1000 by the time they reach adolescence.  These individuals can acquire infection upon exposure and be potentially contagious during an outbreak, although they might experience a modified course of measles and therefore not be labeled as measles cases for the purposes of reporting.

High Vaccination Compliance Is No Guarantee

Measles cases imported into North America after the eradication of the endemic virus in the early 2000s had typically resulted in small or no sustained outbreaks in the last decade, in part due to the vigilance of the public-health authorities in quarantine implementation.  However, the 2011 imported outbreak of measles in Quebec, Canada, characterized by de Serreset al. (2013), appeared to be ominously different.  Strict quarantine measures were not implemented, possibly because of the assumption that the region was well under herd immunity due to an exceptionally high and uniform vaccination compliance for measles (95-97%) in this region.  The consequences of relying on non-existent herd immunity as opposed to quarantine in curbing an imported disease outbreak were very telling.

Imported by a high-school teacher during the Spring break trip abroad (he himself having been vaccinated for measles in his childhood), the outbreak spread swiftly from this index case, involved more than 600 individuals, and lasted for half a year.  Nearly 50% of the measles cases were twice-vaccinated individuals.  As would be predicted by the waning nature of vaccine-based protection, the contribution of twice-vaccinated children to disease cases increased with age.  Twice-vaccinated cases constituted only 4.1% of the 5-9 age group, but 18% of the 10-14 age group, and 22% of the 15-19 age group.  Unfortunately, the study did not assess how many previously vaccinated individuals ended up getting a measles infection with a modified course of disease and thus were not counted as disease cases for the purposes of reporting, yet were spreading the virus around in the community.

The medical establishment assumes that vaccinated children, if they themselves get infected with the virus or even develop full-blown (called breakthrough) disease, cannot transmit it to others.  Some cite a paper published in the prestigious Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA) as providing evidence for this assumption.  Indeed, the title of the article reads “Failure of Vaccinated Children to Transmit Measles.”[6] However, careful examination of the study design reveals that it did not properly address the question it purported to address: whether vaccinated children who get infected during an outbreak can or cannot transmit the virus.

The results of the study clearly show that during an outbreak of measles in an Iowa community in 1970s, which involved both vaccinated and unvaccinated children, non-sick vaccinated children were unlikely to transmit measles to their younger preschool siblings, many of whom could have been recently vaccinated themselves and therefore not vulnerable to measles anyway during that particular outbreak.  The vaccination status of those younger siblings was not determined (or disclosed) by the study.  Curiously, the study shows that non-sick unvaccinated children also “failed” to transmit measles (which they obviously didn’t contract during that particular outbreak) to their younger preschool siblings with undisclosed vaccination status.  If this tells us anything about the failure of the vaccinated children to transmit the virus, then this failure has nothing to do with their vaccination status.  But wouldn’t a paper entitled “Failure of Unvaccinated Children to Transmit Measles” be egregiously out of place in JAMA?

The Real Objective

Let us now remind ourselves that the touted purpose of establishing herd immunity via a high degree of vaccination compliance is to be able to promptly cease any outbreak of a benign childhood disease so that a vulnerable but vaccine-ineligible population (i.e., infants or individuals taking immuno-suppressive medications) could avoid contracting the disease that is dangerous only at their age or given their state of health.  To prevent an outbreak, 70-95% of the population, according to very-broad theoretical estimates, has to be truly immune – that is, resistant to viral infection, not just protected from developing the full range of symptoms that conform to the accepted clinical definition of the disease.  However, even 100% vaccination compliance can at best make only a quarter of the population become resistant to infection for more than ten years.  This makes it apparent that stable herd immunity cannot be achieved via childhood vaccination in the long term regardless of the degree of vaccination compliance.

Normal variations in the gene pool (i.e., personal, immuno-genetic profile) affect how efficiently antigens get processed and presented to the immune system for the purposes of antibody production.  This might be one of the reasons why only a fraction of children can respond well to vaccination (i.e., can generate and maintain high enough antibody titers for many years), whereas other apparently healthy children do not.  Would re-vaccinating those whose personal immuno-genetics do not favor high antibody production in response to the measles vaccine, correct their inherently low degree of vaccine responsiveness?  The research that attests to the futility of such an endeavor is gleaned from observations summed up by Dr. Gregory Poland:

“In studies of measles, post-immunization measles antibody in the ‘low positive’ range did not protect against clinical measles when subjects were exposed to the wild measles virus, whereas high levels were protective.  Furthermore, non-responders to a single dose of measles vaccine, who demonstrated an antibody response only after a second immunization, were still six times more likely than were responders to a single dose of measles vaccine to develop measles on exposure to wild virus.  Others examined ‘poor responders,’ who were re-immunized and developed poor or low-level antibody responses only to lose detectable antibody and develop measles on exposure 2-5 years later.”[7]

The answer is clear: poor responders remain poor responders to further vaccination and cannot contribute to herd immunity from viral diseases in the long run.  Then why would the medical establishment insist that vaccine-based herd immunity is even possible if only stricter or more frequent vaccination measures were implemented?  Why, for the sake of an unattainable idea, would pediatricians and public-health officials pester those families who choose to shield their children from potential vaccine injuries or to ensure their children’s health via natural vaccine-independent strategies?

A Self-Defeating Public Venture

The biomedical belief that a vaccine-exempt child endangers society by not contributing to herd immunity is preposterous, because vaccinating every single child by the required schedule cannot maintain the desired herd immunity anyway.  It is time to let go of the bigotry against those seeking vaccination exemptions for their children.  Instead, we should turn our attention to the outcome of mass-vaccination campaigns that lies ahead.

As I have explained elsewhere, mass vaccination of children initially achieves rapid results in disease reduction through attempted viral eradication only because it hitch hikes on top of the permanently immune majority of adults who acquired their real immunity naturally in the pre-vaccination era.[8] The problem is, however, that the proportion of vaccinated but non-immune young adults is now growing, while the proportion of the older immune population is diminishing due to old age.  Thus, over time mass vaccination makes us lose rather than gain cumulative immunity in the adult population.  At this stage the struggle to control imported outbreaks is going to become an uphill battle regardless of vaccine compliance, with the Quebec experience of 2011 being a harbinger for more of such outbreaks to come.

Mass vaccination eventually ceases endemic disease outbreaks by removing virus circulation in the community, instead of inducing permanent immunity in the vaccinated.  However, viral diseases, although reduced in incidence in many countries, are not fully eradicated from all parts of the World.  A region-specific elimination of viral exposure by means of mass vaccination at the time when the virus is present globally is hardly good news.  Prolonged mass childhood vaccination is a measure of disease control that with time makes our entire adult population (but more importantly infants) more and more defenseless against the incompletely eradicated virus, which can be easily re-imported.  Why do we then choose to put so much effort into a self-defeating public-health venture?

Two epidemiologists, who have recognized the potential problem of this waning vaccine-based protection and have included this parameter into their herd-immunity modeling, predict:

“For infectious diseases where immunization can offer lifelong protection, a variety of simple models can be used to explain the utility of vaccination as a control method.  However, for many diseases, immunity wanes over time…. Here we show how vaccination can have a range of unexpected consequences.  We predict that, after a long disease-free period, the introduction of infection will lead to far larger epidemics than that predicted by standard models.  These results have clear implications for the long-term success of any vaccination campaign and highlight the need for a sound understanding of the immunological mechanisms of immunity and vaccination.”[9]

The medical establishment got it all in reverse: it is not vaccine-exempt children who endanger us all, it is the effects of prolonged mass-vaccination campaigns that have done so.  When would the medical establishment (and the media) start paying attention to the long-term consequences of mass-vaccination measures instead of hastily and unjustifiably blaming every outbreak on the unvaccinated?

 

Tetyana Obukhanych (Ph.D. in immunology from Rockefeller University, New York, NY) is the author of Vaccine Illusion. The book is available in pdf e-book form for immediate download here

[1] Fine PEM, “Herd immunity: history, theory, practice,” Epid Rev 15, 265-302 (1993).

[2] Sencer DJ, Dull HB, Langmuir AD, “Epidemiologic basis for eradication of measles in 1967,” Public Health Rep 82, 253-256 (1967).

[3] Klock LE, Rachelefsky GS, “Failure of rubella herd immunity during an epidemic,” N Engl J Med 288, 69-72 (1973).

[4] Chen RT, et al., “Measles antibody: reevaluation of protective titers,” J Infect Dis 162, 1036-1042 (1990).

[5] LeBaron CW, et al., “Persistence of measles antibodies after 2 doses of measles vaccine in a post-elimination environment,” Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med 161, 294-301 (2007).

[6] Brandling-Bennet AD, Landrigan PJ, Baker EL, “Failure of vaccinated children to transmit measles,” JAMA 224, 616-618 (1973).

[7] Poland GA, “Variability in immune response to pathogens: using measles vaccine to probe immunogenetic determinants of response,” Am J Hum Genet 62, 215-220 (1998).

[8] Obukhanych T, “Vaccine Illusion,” at https://sites.google.com/site/vaccineillusion/measles.

[9] Heffernan JM, Keeling MJ, “Implication of vaccination and waning immunity,” Proc R. Soc. B 276, 2071-2080 (2009).

 

 3) Why are every public health organization and the overwhelming majority of doctors pro-vaccination?

That’s a great question that requires a bit of in depth research to uncover the truth, but as the old saying goes, “when in doubt, follow the money.”

WHAT IS THE “VACCINE COURT”?

Most people are completely unaware of this, but there is a government entity called the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP). It was established in 1986 to protect vaccine manufacturers. It was passed by the United States Congress in response to a threat to the vaccine supply due to a 1980s scare over the DPT vaccine. Today, if you suffer harm or death due to a vaccine, you must file a petition to the government to have a hearing in front of this entity better known as the “vaccine court”. However, because all manufacturers of vaccine drugs are completely immune, they do not participate in the proceedings in any way, nor do they have to pay for any damages.

Consider this: Let’s say a car manufacturer developed a car that blew up 1 car out of every 1,000 cars that drove off the lot, and the government sends out a mandate saying that if you are going to drive on surface streets, you can only drive this brand of vehicle.  Now let’s say instead of allowing you to sue the car manufacturer directly when the car blows up, the government passes a bill saying that you have to go through a special government procedure to get any kind of compensation for your personal damages, a process for which the manufacturer has 100% immunity and isn’t even involved, and instead of it being an easy and straightforward process, you now have to somehow bring forward evidence to prove that it was a defect in the car itself that caused the car to blow up.  Does that process make sense to anybody?  This is exactly the process that parents of vaccine injured children and people who are directly injured by vaccines have to go through. Watch the following 2 videos for a deeper look into this question.

More information about the “Vaccine Court” here: Vaccine Court has paid 3.7 billion in damages to families

VACCINE MANUFACTURERS: ARE WE TRUSTING THE DEVIL WITH OUR LIVES?

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Did you know?: Two of the world’s largest pharmaceutical manufacturers of vaccines have produced drugs that have directly injured nearly 200,000 people and killed nearly 100,000 people, and they knew about the risks ahead of time and chose to lie to the FDA and the public so they could make a profit.

In 2006, the pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) produced and mass marketed a drug called Avandia, fast-tracked it through the FDA, and by 2007 it became the world’s largest selling Type II diabetes drug on the market. GSK racked up $3.2 billion in sales for Avandia in 2006. However, GSK purposely withheld information from the FDA and lied to the public about the safety and risks associated of Avandia. Prior to marketing the drug, they had run numerous clinical trials on Avandia, and they knew that it increased a person’s risk for having a heart attack by 43%; however, they chose not to share any of that information with the FDA or the public. The results were devastating. It is estimated that over 100,000 people had heart attacks as a direct result from taking Avandia, and tens of thousands of people died. Finally after all of these deaths and injuries had occurred, individual whistleblowers sounded the alarm on GSK’s unethical procedures, and the FDA was forced to place severe restrictions on Avandia. GSK ultimately was mandated to pay a meager $3 billion in fines to settle their civil and criminal liabilities in court. However, despite all of the known serious risks, the FDA still allows Avandia to be available by prescription from a doctor to this day.

A more in depth story on Avandia: Avandia Side Effects

A more in depth look at GSK’s financial proceedings: GlaxoSmithKline’s Drug Settlement Fines and Payments

Similarly, in 1999, the FDA approved the drug Vioxx, which was created by the 4th largest pharmaceutical company in the world, Merck, as a “safer” and “better” NSAID used to treat pain and inflammation.  They marketed it as a rheumatoid arthritis medication, a use for which it was never approved. Nevertheless, within several years, Vioxx public sales had reached several billion dollars, but questions began being raised about the safety of the drug. Five years after its FDA approval, Merck voluntarily withdrew Vioxx from the market in 2004. Research published that same year in the medical journal Lancet estimated that 88,000 Americans had heart attacks from taking Vioxx, and 38,000 of them died. It was discovered that Merck knew about the extremely harmful side effects of Vioxx but chose to hide that information from the FDA and the public in order to boost their profits.  Merck paid a paltry $950 million fine for its illegal actions.

Here’s a more in depth look at some of Merck’s questionable financial proceedings: Merck’s Drug Settlement Fines and Payments

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PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANY SETTLEMENTS

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Here is a brief list of a FEW of the other major money settlements that pharmaceutical companies have paid out due to unethical procedures in recent years:

GlaxoSmithKline: JULY 2012, was forced to pay a fine of $3 billion to resolve civil and criminal liabilities regarding its promotion of drugs, as well as its failure to report safety data, Avandia being one of those drugs.

Pfizer (#1 pharmaceutical company in the world): SEPT 2009, fined $2.3 billion, which which was then the largest criminal fine ever imposed in the United States, for pleading guilty to misbranding the painkiller Bextra with “the intent to defraud or mislead,” promoting the drug to treat acute pain at dosages the FDA had previously deemed dangerously high.

Johnson & Johnson: NOV 2013, was forced to pay a $2.2 billion fine to resolve criminal and civil allegations relating to the Rx drugs Tisperdal, Invega, and Natrecor.

Abbott: MAY 2012, fined $1.5 billion due to the illegal promotion of the antipsychotic drug Depakote.

Eli Lilly: JAN 2009, fined $1.42 billion to resolve a government investigation into the off-label promotion of the antipsychotic Zyprexa.

Amgen: DEC 2012, forced to pay a $762 million fine to resolve criminal and civil charges that the company illegally introduced and promoted several drugs including an anemia drug called Aranesp.

AstraZeneca: APRIL 2010, fined $520 million to resolve allegations that it illegally promoted the antipsychotic drug Seroquel

Sanofi-Aventis: DEC 2012, forced to pay $109 million to resolve allegations that the company gave doctors free units of Hyalgan (an injection for knee pain) to encourage those doctors to buy their product.

Boehringer Ingelheim: OCT 2012, forced to pay $95 million to resolve allegations that the company promoted several drugs for non-medically accepted uses.

Endo: FEB 2014, forced to pay $192.7 million to resolve criminal and civil liability arising from their marketing of the Rx drug Lidoderm.

So, even though these pharmaceutical companies have directly harmed and even killed hundreds of thousands of people and have plead guilty to these charges in a court of law, how many people from those companies do you think were criminally held liable for their actions? Yup, you guessed it…ZERO!

Why is this important you might ask, and how does this relate to vaccines?

Based off of 2012 revenues, here are the top 5 vaccine producing companies:

  1. Sanofi-Aventis
  2. Merck
  3. GlaxoSmithKline
  4. Pfizer
  5. Novartis

Do you see a problem here? Based off of the 1986 Vaccine Act, all of these pharmaceutical companies are not held liable for any injuries their vaccines cause.

Do you think we should consider it safe for such unethical companies to receive 100% immunity for any future harm they cause? Do you think we can trust them to produce safe and efficacious drugs, especially ones that we are going to inject into all of our children? Because as the history of evidence shows, the FDA will do little, if anything, to perform in depth research or investigations on these pharmaceutical companies until it is much too late. So many times, the FDA only steps in after hundreds of thousands of lives have already been destroyed. We cannot trust the FDA to protect us. These are some of the main reasons why I personally choose not to ingest any of the chemicals that these chemical companies produce.

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U.S. GOVERNMENT MAJOR VACCINE CONFLICTS OF INTEREST

Article retrieved from: CDC Members Own More Than 50 Patents Connected to Vaccinations

The CDC Immunization Safety Office is responsible for investigating the safety and effectiveness of all new vaccinations; once an investigation is considered complete, a recommendation is then made to the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) who then determines whether the new vaccine will be added to the current vaccination schedule. Members of the ACIP committee include physicians such as Dr. Paul Offit, who also serves as the chief of infectious diseases at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Offit and other CDC members own numerous patents associated with vaccinations and regularly receive funding for their research work from the very same pharmaceutical companies who manufacturer vaccinations which are ultimately sold to the public. This situation creates an obvious conflict of interest, as members of the ACIP committee benefit financially every time a new vaccination is released to the market.

Members of the ACIP Committee Directly Influence Public Health

Each of the 12 members of the CDC’s ACIP Committee has a significant influence on the health of nearly every member of the American population. Because they are responsible for adding to and/or altering the national vaccine schedule, it is of critical importance that they remain objective and unbiased before determining whether a new vaccination is appropriate for use, particularly in the bodies of vulnerable young children. Unfortunately, a significant number of ACIP committee members receive direct financial returns when more vaccinations are added to the current schedule. Many own vaccination related patent(s) and/or stock shares of the pharmaceutical companies responsible for supplying new vaccines to the public. Others receive research grant money, funding for their academic departments, or payments for the oversight of vaccine safety trials.

A Long List of Patents Owned by ACIP and Other CDC Members

The following is a partial list of some of the patents that are owned or shared by members of the CDC and/or ACIP committee, including Dr. Paul Offit:

  • Nucleic acid vaccines for prevention of flavivirus infection” – This patent comes into play during the manufacturing process of vaccines for yellow fever, Zika, Dengue, West Nile virus and more.
  • Various vaccination testing methods– When pharmaceutical companies need to test aspects of a new vaccine, they may utilize one of the CDC’s patented testing methods including an artificial lung system for aerosol vaccines and a process that screens new vaccines for human rhinoviruses.
  • Adjuvant patents– Adjuvants are components within vaccinations intended to create an intensified immune reaction; members of the ACIP own patents on adjuvants used specifically in vaccinations created for premature babies and full term newborns.
  • Assays that assist vaccine development– During the vaccine development process, manufacturers will often observe biological samples for specific antibodies; the CDC owns a patent on an assay that facilitates this monitoring system.
  • Vaccine quality control – patents on various aspects of quality control for vaccinations are utilized by pharmaceutical companies on a large scale once a new vaccine is actively distributed to the public.

In total, 56 individual patents were found to be owned or shared by one or more members of the ACIP committee or other committees within the CDC.

Members Claim They are Unbiased

When prompted with questions pertaining to their financial connections with pharmaceutical companies, most ACIP members claim they are able to remain unbiased despite the rewards they receive every time a new vaccination is recommended to the public. In numerous instances, vaccines released to the market are later removed after serious side effects are documented. The rotavirus vaccine was one such example; it was pulled from the market in 1999, a year after its initial approval. In 2001, the House Government Reform Committee found that four out of the eight ACIP members who voted to approve the vaccine had direct financial ties to one or more of the pharmaceutical companies who produced the vaccine for public use. Similar situations involving many other vaccinations have been independently documented over the course of nearly 20 years.

A Multi-Billion Dollar Industry

The vaccination industry currently generates $30 billion in profit each year, some of which reaches the hands of the very people who create the vaccine schedule. Despite concerns connecting vaccinations to the increase in autism and a host of other disorders, the number of recommended vaccines continues to grow each year. With a new federal administration interested in uncovering the dirty secrets hidden within alliances between CDC members and vaccine manufacturers, we may begin to see a wave of personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits related directly to unethical behaviors which have led to numerous unsafe vaccines being pushed on an unknowing public. If the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP) is amended or repealed, victims of vaccine damage will be legally permitted to file claims directly against vaccine manufacturers and members of the ACIP committee who often have had knowledge of vaccine risks yet continue to recommend their widespread use.

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WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO) CONFLICTS OF INTEREST

Follow link to free PDF:

Why the Corruption of the World Health Organization (WHO) is the Biggest Threat to the World’s Public Health of Our Time

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4) What is the danger of vaccination?

First, let me ask a question: Does smoking cause cancer? No, of course it doesn’t!  If it did, every single person who smoked would get cancer, but as we know, there are many people who smoke but still go on to live long and healthy disease-free lives.  Our bodies are amazing and complex, capable of handling and healing from disease, toxicity, and injury.  However, does that mean that we should continue to assault our bodies and overload them with harmful chemicals and toxins?  I think the pretty most common sense answer to that question is no.  Do vaccines cause autism?  Well, just like smoking and cancer, the two are definitely linked.  But autism isn’t the only concern.  There is a myriad of health problems that have ensued as a result of our vaccination policies as I will outline here.

For those who are uneducated on vaccinations, most will point to the 2004 article in the Lancet that linked vaccines to autism but was then later “retracted,” and they will call the entire vaccine danger argument “debunked.”

See article here: Ileal-lymphoid-nodular hyperplasia, non-specific colitis, and pervasive developmental disorder in children

However, if you actually start to do research on vaccines, you will find there was not just one study, but there are over 6,500 scholarly scientific articles and studies illustrating the dangers of vaccines.  I will do my best to share some of them with you and give you links to do more in depth research for yourself.

Vaccines are drugs, and just like any other drug, they don’t come without serious risks and side effects.

Let’s look at this from a common sense point of view. For example, if we get 50 people together, sit them down in a room, and give them all a single dose of the same drug, can we expect each and every person to have the same exact reaction to that drug? No, of course not, but if we run a good clinical trial, we can probably figure out the most common and most severe side effects for that one drug. Now, let’s try something different. Let’s take another 50 people and give them 8 different drugs all at the same time. Do you think they will react differently than the first group? Absolutely. Now we have 50 people taking 8 different drugs, having 8 different reactions to each of those drugs, and having multiple reactions to the combination of those 8 different drugs. According to the capabilities of science testing and statistical probability, it is virtually impossible to test or even predict all of the possible reactions that can happen from a person taking 3 or more drugs at one time, much less 8 of them; still, this is exactly what we are doing to our children and us when we get vaccinated.  However, the only difference with vaccines is that vaccines have numerous ingredients in them, each of which have serious and deadly side effects.

I highly recommend that you read the article that I have attached at the end of this article in the “MEDICAL JOURNAL REFERENCES” section if you would like to see a few of the peer reviewed scientific journal articles on vaccine safety, or you can click on the link here: 87 Published Works on Vaccines and Adverse Health Concerns

VACCINE INGREDIENTS

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Images taken directly from the CDC website: https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/appendices/b/excipient-table-2.pdf

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Top 10 Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants

Article retrieved from: Toxic vaccine adjuvants

Toxic vaccine adjuvantsand ingredients are not emphasized enough in the debate over the safety of vaccines. The medical establishment, which has essentially been wed to Big Pharma ever since its inception by the Rockefellers, routinely downplays the idea that these adjuvants are quite harmful. In reality, many are known carcinogens. Western medicine also tends to makes the excuse that it is a case of “benefit vs. risk”, and that the benefit outweighs the risk – but does it really, given the ton of natural alternative remedies and the fact that these adjuvants can get stuck in your body forever? I have listed 1o of the most common toxic vaccine adjuvants below, and after reading about each one, please consider whether you think we can accurately call vaccines “good medicine”, given that these 10 adjuvants are being injected directly into the bloodstream (thus bypassing the digestive filters) of every vaccine patient who receives them.

You can confirm that these adjuvants and ingredients are indeed being added to vaccines by looking the official lists of the CDC (Center for Disease Control) as well as other websites like this.

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #1: Mercury (Thimerosal or Thiomersal)

Mercury, which constitutes 49.7% of thimerosal (or thiomersal), has been commonly known for a very long time to be a highly toxic agent. Mercury has always been beloved by allopathy ever since its inception; in fact, the 3 main treatments of the early allopaths of the 19th century were bloodletting, surgery and the injection of toxic heavy metals like lead and mercury to purportedly displace disease! The expression “mad as a hatter” comes from the observation that the early hat makers, who used mercury in felt to make hats, became crazy through inhaling the stuff.

Numerous studies have been done on the toxicity of mercury, with evidence it leads to infertilitygastritis (a precancerous stage of gastric cancer), neurodegenerationmitochondrial abnormalitiesnephrotic syndromeapoptosis (cell death) and autism, yet the IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer, under the auspices of the Rockefeller-created WHO) still refuses to admit mercury can cause cancer and is leaving mercury categorized as a class 2b possible carcinogen (as opposed to class 2a probable carcinogen or class 1 definite carcinogen). The study above on cell death concluded:

Mercury (Hg) is a highly toxic metal that can exert multiple adverse effects, ultimately leading to cell death. Before causing death, the Hg enters the cells and affects diverse intracellular targets.

Since thimerosal contains about 50% mercury by weight, vaccines with a ratio of 1:10,000 (or 0.01% thimerosal) have about 50 mg/L mercury, which exceeds the 0.2 mg/L hazardous waste toxicity regulatory level for mercury. According to US state and federal hazardous waste management requirements, any vaccines with this level of thimerosal which are discarded need to be treated as hazardous waste.

Mercury often gets all of the headlines for its dangers in vaccines and rightfully so. However, as we can see from the above images, mercury (thimerisol) is not the only ingredient in vaccines. Mercury is primarily used as a preservative in the influenza vaccines. Nevertheless, the other numerous adjuvants pose serious health concerns.

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #2: Aluminum

Aluminum is another metal which, like mercury, is highly harmful for human health. Aluminum is a “light” metal rather than a heavy metal like lead and mercury, but its health effects are devastating nonetheless. As a vaccine adjuvant, aluminum is normally mixed into the vaccine as a salt, e.g. as aluminium phosphate and aluminium hydroxide.

This study specifically asked the question, “Aluminum vaccine adjuvants: are they safe?” and found they were not. Other studies have implicated aluminum in the development of impaired congitive functionneurotoxicityAlzheimer’s and autism. (It should be noted, however, that it is possible to take aluminum into the body if it is tightly bound as a molecule and not suffer any ill effects, because it will pass straight through the body and not be released. An example of this is zeolite, a matrix of aluminum silicates, which is actually a spectacular health supplement that can safely remove toxins like mercury from your body.)

As summarized from the following scientific review, aluminum is a dangerous adjuvant that is added to trigger the immune system to respond to the injected vaccine foreign pathogen.

Aluminum Vaccine Adjuvants: Are they Safe?

“Aluminum is an experimentally demonstrated neurotoxin and the most commonly used vaccine adjuvant. Despite almost 90 years of widespread use of aluminum adjuvants, medical science’s understanding about their mechanisms of action is still remarkably poor. There is also a concerning scarcity of data on toxicology and pharmacokinetics of these compounds. In spite of this, the notion that aluminum in vaccines is safe appears to be widely accepted. Experimental research, however, clearly shows that aluminum adjuvants have a potential to induce serious immunological disorders in humans. In particular, aluminum in adjuvant form carries a risk for autoimmunity, long-term brain inflammation and associated neurological complications and may thus have profound and widespread adverse health consequences. In our opinion, the possibility that vaccine benefits may have been overrated and the risk of potential adverse effects underestimated, has not been rigorously evaluated in the medical and scientific community.”

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #3: Human Diploid Cells (Aborted Fetuses)

Believe it or not, fetal DNA tissue in used in vaccine cultures, disguised under the name of diploid cells. A diploid cell is simply a cell with a double set if chromosomes. These cells are human cells, derived from the tissue of babies or fetuses, some of which are definitely aborted! This has being going on for over 50 years. The article Human Fetal Links with Some Vaccines admits that “Two different strains of human diploid cell cultures made from fetuses have been used extensively for vaccine production for decades. One was developed in the United States in 1961 (called WI-38) and the other in the United Kingdom in 1966 (called MRC-5).”

Many people, religious or not, are understandably opposed to allowing themselves to be injected with the tissue of dead babies. Would you want to be injected with that? There are major ethical ramifications here, not to mention grave health issues too. A study by Dr. Deisher found a connection between the injection of human diploid cells and autism. The basis of this is that when you inject something foreign into your body, your cells will either assimilate it (whereby the foreign human DNA will be transported into nuclei and be integrated into host genome, causing phenotype change) or attack it (meaning you develop an auto-immune response, leading to the auto-immune diseases of the ASD [Autism Spectrum Disorder]). Either way, residual human fetal DNA fragments in vaccines can be one of causes of autism in children. Dr. Deisher’s study concluded:

Autistic disorder change points years are coincident with introduction of vaccines manufactured using human fetal cell lines, containing fetal and retroviral contaminants, into childhood vaccine regimens. This pattern was repeated in the US, UK, Western Australia and Denmark. Thus, rising autistic disorder prevalence is directly related to vaccines manufactured utilizing human fetal cells.

I also recommend watching Clint Richardson’s fantastic documentary “Lethal Injection” where he delves into the issue of aborted diploid cells and offers further research and analysis.

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #4: Animal Cells

Almost all vaccines need something in which to grow the culture, and that normally means animal cells. All sorts of animals are used for this, including chickens, pigs, dogs, monkeys, horses, rabbits, cows and more. All these animal cells remain in trace amounts in the vaccine, as admitted by the FDA. This means that when you allow a vaccine to be injected into your body, you are allowing animal DNA into your body, which of course are foreign protein cells. Is this really a good idea for your body? Consider that:

  • many vaccines contain egg-derived albumin, which is responsible for a lot of allergic reactions according to this study;
  • pig/swine viruses were discovered in the Rotarix vaccinewhich the FDA suspended in 2010;
  • the polio vaccines of the 1960s, which contained monkey cells, were contaminated with a virus known as SV40 (simian virus 40). This later was shown to cause widespread cancer.

New vaccines are now being developed which contain dog cells (e.g. Flucelvax). Additionally, albumin can be human-derived, but it’s still a problem. This study concluded side effects were grossly under-reported, and there are still have concerns over the safety of it.

Marti Oakley in an article on Activist Post entitled “Vaccines: Human and Animal DNA” points out that:

Cell lines, which can be derived from aborted human babies, can last for decades and are developed from a single type of cell.  Yet it is known that after continuous culturing these lines begin to mutate into cancer-causing agents. If these cell lines do this spontaneously in the lab, what are the chances they are doing the same thing once inside the human body where the culturing never ends? … We are being injected via vaccine with bits and pieces of other human beings; with the bits and pieces of other mammals.  Whatever the intended purpose of vaccines was initially, it is apparent that too little is either known or acknowledged regarding the potential adverse side affects from co-mingling the DNA of humans and animals and the potential for viral and bacterial cross-contaminations that can and do occur.

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #5: MSG (Monosodium Glutamate)

MSG (monosodium glutamate or sodium glutamate) is the sodium salt of the glutamic acid (glutamate), which is one of the amino acids or protein building blocks. Free glutamic acid is a neurotransmitter that your brain, nervous system, eyes, pancreas and other organs need to function and start certain processes in your body. MSG has become notorious for being a hidden ingredient in many foods which creates the illusion of protein or more food being present in what you’re eating – when they’re really not. In 1959, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) labeled MSG as “Generally Recognized as Safe” (GRAS), yet since then it has acknowledged the existence of an “MSG Symptom Complex” which describes short-term reactions to MSG. These include numerous side effects which people experience after eating MSG, such as numbness, headaches, fatigue, disorientation and heart palpitations.

Despite its GRAS rating, the FDA commissioned a study on MSG in 1995, probably because of people complaining about “Chinese Restaurant Syndrome”. This study found that MSG Symptom Complex can involve symptoms such as:

  • Burning sensation
  • Facial pressure or tightnes
  • Chest pain or difficulty breathin
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Palpitation
  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Bronchospasm
  • Drowsiness
  • Weakness

How many people are sensitive to MSG? It has been estimated up to 40%. Dr. Russell Blaylock, a board-certified neurosurgeon and author of “Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills”, has done considerable research on MSG. He calls it an excitotoxin, meaning it overexcites your cells to the point of damage or death, causing brain damage to varying degrees, and potentially triggering or worsening amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, Lou Gehrig’s disease), Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s. All three diseases can develop gradually.

Why is MSG being used in vaccines? It’s being used because it is a stabilizer that prevents or slows down oxidation or damage from light. This website claims that MSG is only added to some vaccines: “Glutamate is added as a nutrient to the growth medium for MMR-II and is not in the final product in significant amounts; monosodium glutamate is added to FluMist (0.188 mg/0.2 mL dose); monosodium L-glutamate is added to ProQuad (.4mg), Zostavax (.62mg) and Varivax (.5mg); and potassium glutamate is added to RabAvert (1mg).”

Still, since MSG is a known toxin with deleterious effects on human health, why do doctors willingly inject it into people?

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #6: Formaldehyde

Formaldehyde is a foul-smelling chemical used a preservative and biocide. The IARC categorizes it as a class 1 definite carcinogen, and the National Toxicology Program concluded in this study that:

Formaldehyde is known to be a human carcinogen based on sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity from studies in humans and supporting data on mechanisms of carcinogenesis. Formaldehyde was first listed in the Second Annual Report on Carcinogens in 1981 as reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen based on sufficient evidence from studies in experimental animals. Since that time, additional cancer studies in humans have been published …

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #7: Antibiotics

Antibiotics are typically used in vaccine production and manufacture. Antibiotics were once the crown jewel of Western medicine, with their ability to wipe out infectious diseases, but many have long known they are a double-edged sword. Antibiotics indiscriminately kill all the bacteria in your system, helpful or harmful. This obviously destroys the balance of bacteria in your gut, which forms the basis of your immune system. Thus, antibiotics invite all sorts of future problems and disease (unless you quickly re-establish the proper balance of bacteria, e.g. with probiotics), including fungal attacks.

I have previously written about the phenomenon of antibiotic overuse. There have been many reports in the last few years that Big Pharma is no longer investing in antibiotics, because every time they invent a new antibiotic drug, the bacteria adapt to it and change. This process is fueling the rise of superbugs. The FDA states some of the antibiotics used during vaccine manufacture include neomycin, polymyxin B, streptomycin and gentamicin. Some of these belong to the aminoglycoside class of antibiotics, which include side effects such as dizziness, nausea, renal (kidney) toxicity and ototoxicity (hearing loss).

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #8: Squalene

Squalene was an experimental toxic vaccine adjuvant added to vaccines around the time of the first Gulf War. Squalene has been implicated in GWS (Gulf War Syndrome) in this study, and the DoD (Department of Defense) conveniently “lost” (read destroyed) 700,000 immunization records, which might have told us why squalene was showing up in Gulf War veterans’ blood samples. ProjectCensored.com commented:

A military lab researcher interviewed by Insight was quoted as saying, “We have found soldiers who are not sick that do not have the antibodies, and we found soldiers who never left the United States, but who got shots (administered by the military) who are sick—and they have squalene in their systems. We found people who served overseas in various parts of the desert that are sick who have squalene. And we found people who served in the desert but were civilians who never got the shots, who are not sick and do not have squalene.”

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #9: Peanut Oil #65

Peanuts are known as a very common allergen, yet despite this, there are some vaccines which contain peanut oil. It has been used for a very long time. In fact, Dr. Lawrence Palevsky writes that it has been in use since 1960, and since Big Pharma vaccine manufacturers are not required by law to list every single ingredient used in culturing vaccines, there may be no real way to now which vaccines have traces of it. He writes:

If current vaccine package inserts do not contain the specific evidence that peanut oil, or peanut meal, is contained within the final vaccine product, it does not mean that peanut antigen is not in the final vaccine product. Vaccine manufacturers use different growth media on which to manufacture the vaccines. They do not report, and I believe are not required to report, the exact ingredients in all of the growth media. Therefore, we may not know whether peanut antigen is used in the vaccine manufacturing process just by reading through the package inserts … and, it may, or may not, have anything to do with an attempt to purposely hide the information that peanut antigen is present in vaccines.

Peanut oil is far from the only adjuvant used in vaccines which is highly allergenic. Other vaccine antigens, such as those used in Hepatitis B vaccines and the HPV (Human Papillomavirus) vaccine Gardasil, are manufactured in yeast cells. Yeast proteins have been shown to cause allergic reactions in people. Do you want this stuff in your bloodstream?

Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants / Ingredients #10: GMOs

On top of all the toxic vaccine adjuvants listed above, the GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) issue also pertains to vaccines, because vaccines are now being made with genetically engineered viruses. This goes to show that, sadly, the so-called sacred precautionary principle of science is often thrown to the wind when the potential for massive profit arises. We simply do not know what effect genetically engineered viruses will have on the human body long term. What happens when foreign DNA is inserted into the body? Does it trigger undesirable changes in human cells? Does the human body treat it as foreign and attack it? Does it combine with human DNA, and if so, is the new combined DNA an enhancement or impairment? Will it transfer to future generations? We’re clearly moving into unknown and potentially very dangerous territory by allowing this stuff to be be injected into our bodies.

This study warned of the dangers of using genetically engineered viruses in vaccines:

Genetically modified (GM) viruses and genetically engineered virus-vector vaccines possess significant unpredictability and a number of inherent harmful potential hazards … Important questions concerning effects on nontargeted individuals within the same species or other species remain unknown. Horizontal transfer of genes, though lacking supportive experimental or epidemiological investigations, is well established. New hybrid virus progenies resulting from genetic recombination between genetically engineered vaccine viruses and their naturally occurring relatives may possess totally unpredictable characteristics with regard to host preferences and disease-causing potentials. Furthermore, when genetically modified or engineered virus particles break down in the environment, their nuclei acids are released … There is inadequate knowledge to define either the probability of unintended events or the consequences of genetic modifications.

Other Toxic Vaccine Adjuvants and Ingtedients

In addition the above top 10 toxic vaccine adjuvants and ingredients, it would also be wise to take note of many other possible vaccine fillers, which include:

  • acetone (solvent used in fingernail polish remover)
    • ammonium sulfate
    • amphotericin B
    • betapropiolactone
    • formalin
    • gelatin
    • glycerol
    • hydrolized gelatin
    • phenol red indicator
    • phenoxyethanol (antifreeze)
    • potassium diphosphate
    • potassium monophosphate
    • polymyxin B
    • polysorbate 20
    • polysorbate 80
    • residual MRC5 proteins
    • sorbitol
    • streptomycin (antibiotic)
    • tri(n)butylphosphate (neurotoxin)

Investigating vaccines fully and deeply is like opening a witch’s “Pandora’s box” brew … who knows what creatures and concoctions are lurking in that syringe?

UNDERSTANDING THE INFANT IMMUNE SYSTEM

So, let’s think about this for a minute. What do you think the probability is that you or any young child will come in contact with the diseases tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis, polio, rotavirus, PCV, and hepatitis B all in the same day? How about in a 6-month period? The odds are virtually impossible. Do you really think that our immune system is prepared and capable of attacking and building up a defense for all of those infections at one time? Perhaps…but it’s never been studied. According to the CDC vaccine schedule, this is exactly what we do to our children at 2 moths of age. The only difference is that instead of utilizing the entire immune system (skin, hair, saliva, mucous membranes, gastric juices, gut bacteria, etc.) we directly inject these viruses and ingredients directly into the bloodstream.

Now you’re probably saying, “But wait! Aren’t all of these diseases attenuated (not full strength)? Yes. That is why they add in ingredients such as formaldehyde to make them not as active.

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Article retrieved from: Infant Vaccine Schedule Endangers the Immune System

Over the past 30 years the vaccine schedule for infants has greatly increased. Babies born in 2017 can receive as many as 36 doses of 14 vaccines by 15 months of age starting with the Hepatitis B vaccine on the day of birth.

Untested schedule, knowledge severely lacking

The quantity and combination of vaccines in this schedule have never been tested. The infant vaccine schedule is one size fits all. Babies’ immune systems are not tested and family histories of autoimmune or allergic conditions are not considered prior to vaccinating.

This started with the first round of childhood vaccines given in the late 1960s, as reported on page 8 of the Merck MMR II package insert:

Routine administration of DTP (diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis) and/or OPV (oral poliovirus vaccine) concurrently with measles, mumps and rubella vaccines is not recommended because there are limited data relating to the simultaneous administration of these antigens. 

The CDC failed to take advantage of significant changes in vaccine formulation to justify testing of the schedule, even though these changes were specifically made due to serious safety concerns:

And the CDC failed to conduct testing with the subsequent addition of many dozens of doses of nine additional vaccines added to the schedule: Hepatitis B, Hib, Varicella (chickenpox), Rotavirus, Hepatitis A, Pneumococcal (Prevnar 13), Influenza, Meningococcal, Human papillomavirus (Gardasil quadrivalent types 6, 11, 16, 18).

The infant vaccine schedule is one size fits all and the dosage does not vary. A baby born 15 weeks premature at 21 weeks gestation is given the same dosage as a postterm baby born 42 weeks or later, as per guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics:

Parents may think that their newborns are just too fragile to be vaccinated because of low birth weight and possible health problems that came with their baby’s preterm birth. Your pediatrician will tell you that all of these babies should be given the routinely recommended childhood vaccinations. They should get every immunization on the standard schedule when they reach the ages at which these shots are normally given to all children.

We examine each of the vaccines recommended for infants from birth to 15 months of age, and the effects of each vaccine on the infant immune system. We present studies where infant immune response, side effects, vaccine efficacy, serotype replacement and duration of immunity are discussed. Studies discussing the effect of breastfeeding and maternal antibodies on the infant immune response are also presented.

The 2014 study below reveals that knowledge of vaccination’s effect on the infant immune system is severely lacking and argues “for an improved understanding of the immune responses of neonates, infants and young children to vaccine antigens.”

Challenges in Vaccination of Neonates, Infants and Young Children? (full text) Vaccine. 2014 Jun 30; 32(31): 3886–3894.

“Maternal antibody and poor generation of T-cell and B-cell memory in neonates and infants are known to result in inadequate adaptive immunity from vaccinating this population compared to older children and adults. Our group has recently identified a subset of infants and young children that fail to generate protective antibody levels to diphtheria (DT), tetanus (TT), pertussis (PT) toxoid, pertussis filamentous hemagglutinin (FHA), and pertussis pertactin (PRN) in DTaP vaccinations, polio serotype 3, and Streptococcus pneumoniae conjugated polysaccharide 23F (Prevnar-CRM) and produce lower geometric mean titers to polio serotypes 1 and 2 and, Streptococcus pneumoniae serotype 14.” … “Although challenging because of the age of the subjects, more studies to further understand immune dysfunction in neonates, infants and young children are needed. The quality and quantity of systemic and mucosal antibody and memory B-cell generation, adaptive CD4 T-cell vaccine-specific responses and memory recall, and APC – B-cell and CD4 T-cell interactions following recommended vaccinations needs to be more thoroughly characterized.”

Immune activation by aluminum adjuvants

The newborn immune system is not fully developed at birth. Immune system activation caused by vaccines and aluminum (contained in some infant vaccines) has been connected with brain injury and autism. In addition to the two studies below, see this series for further information about the effect of Immune Activation and Autism.

Do aluminum vaccine adjuvants contribute to the rising prevalence of autism? Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry Volume 105, Issue 11, November 2011, Pages 1489–1499

“Aluminum (Al), the most commonly used vaccine adjuvant, is a demonstrated neurotoxin and a strong immune stimulator. Hence, adjuvant Al has the potential to induce neuroimmune disorders. When assessing adjuvant toxicity in children, two key points ought to be considered: (i) children should not be viewed as “small adults” as their unique physiology makes them much more vulnerable to toxic insults; and (ii) if exposure to Al from only few vaccines can lead to cognitive impairment and autoimmunity in adults, is it unreasonable to question whether the current pediatric schedules, often containing 18 Al adjuvanted vaccines, are safe for children? … The application of the Hill’s criteria to these data indicates that the correlation between Al in vaccines and ASD may be causal.

Non-linear dose-response of aluminium hydroxide adjuvant particles: Selective low dose neurotoxicity Toxicology Volume 375, 15 January 2017, Pages 48–57

“Aluminium (Al) oxyhydroxide (Alhydrogel®), the main adjuvant licensed for human and animal vaccines, consists of primary nanoparticles that spontaneously agglomerate. Concerns about its safety emerged following recognition of its unexpectedly long-lasting biopersistence within immune cells in some individuals, and reports of chronic fatigue syndrome, cognitive dysfunction, myalgia, dysautonomia and autoimmune/inflammatory features temporally linked to multiple Al-containing vaccine administrations. Mouse experiments have documented its capture and slow transportation by monocyte-lineage cells from the injected muscle to lymphoid organs and eventually the brain. … We conclude that Alhydrogel® injected at low dose in mouse muscle may selectively induce long-term Al cerebral accumulation and neurotoxic effects.”

CDC recommended vaccination schedule

Below is the CDC’s recommended childhood vaccination schedule for children from birth to 15 months. Check individual state requirements, as they differ by state.

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Footnotes available here

FDA Vaccines Licensed for Use in US

Hepatitis B Vaccine

The three dose series begins at birth. The genetically engineered recombinant hepatitis B vaccine was licensed in 1986, replacing the plasma derived vaccine approved in 1981. A thimerosal free vaccine was approved in 1999 after the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) jointly recommended reducing infant exposure to thimerosal.

There are many studies questioning the efficacy and safety of the hepatitis b vaccine. Two recent studies report on various serious adverse events:

Statistical and Ontological Analysis of Adverse Events Associated with Monovalent and Combination Vaccines against Hepatitis A and B Diseases (full text) Scientific Reports – Nature2016; 6: 34318.

“Engerix-B was associated with many nervous system AEs (e.g., demyelination, hyperreflexia, and optic neuritis), eye disorders (e.g., visual acuity reduced, double vision, and visual disturbance), and musculoskeletal or connective tissue AEs (e.g., fasciitis, fibrosis tendinous, and myofascitis) (Table 2).”

Isolated abducens nerve palsy following neonatal hepatitis B vaccination (full text) Journal of American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus February 2014 Volume 18, Issue 1, Pages 75–76

We report a case of sudden-onset abducens nerve palsy in an otherwise healthy 8-day-old boy following neonatal hepatitis B vaccination. A complete workup, including magnetic resonance imaging of the brain and orbits revealed no abnormalities. The patient recovered fully, with no recurrence of the abducens nerve palsy despite receiving the full course of the hepatitis B vaccine as well as other recommended immunizations through 18 months of age. We review the literature regarding vaccination-induced abducens nerve palsy and discuss the possible mechanisms of injury.”

Studies detailing the problem of non-responders to the hepatitis B vaccine are below:

Repeated vaccinations do not improve specific immune defenses against Hepatitis B in non-responder health care workers Vaccine Volume 32, Issue 51, 5 December 2014, Pages 6902–6910

“We found that the great majority of the non-responders had a functional immune system and a preserved ability to respond to other conventional antigens. Our most important findings are that the frequency of HBsAg-specific memory B cells is comparable in non-responders and controls and that booster immunization does not lead either to antibody production or memory B cell increase in non-responders.”

Celiac Disease is an autoimmune disorder which is also increasing in children.

Failure to Respond to Hepatitis B Vaccine in Children with Celiac Disease Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition April 2007 – Volume 44 – Issue 4

ConclusionsMore than 50% of children with CD do not show a response to standard vaccination regimens for HBV. Given the large number of children with CD throughout the world, this observation suggests that there is a large HBV-susceptible population despite widespread vaccination. Current immunization strategies may need to be reassessed to protect this population and achieve the goal of universal protection.”

Boys and girls can respond differently to the hepatitis B vaccine, with concerns for autoimmunity in females:

HLA-DPB1 and anti-HBs titer kinetics in hepatitis B booster recipients who completed primary hepatitis B vaccination during infancy Genes and Immunity 15, 47-53 (January/February 2014)

Gender difference was another factor found to affect the responsiveness of booster in this study. We found that female subjects had significantly stronger booster responses compared with male subjects. In the immune system, a gender gap has long been observed clinically. In humans, female subjects usually expressed higher level of antibodies and antibody-stimulating Th2 cytokines. They also had higher chances to develop autoimmune diseasesbecause of a more responsive immune system. Our finding was consistent with previous studies, including a recent large-scale HBV vaccination cohort study.”

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) has been linked to hepatitis B vaccination and the adjuvant aluminum in mice. Also concerning in this study is the vaccine and aluminum adjuvant causing brain side effects:

Immunization with hepatitis B vaccine accelerates SLE-like disease in a murine model Journal of Autoimmunity Volume 54, November 2014, Pages 21–32

“Immunization with HBVv induced acceleration of kidney disease manifested by high anti-dsDNA antibodies (p < 0.01), early onset of proteinuria (p < 0.05), histological damage and deposition of HBs antigen in the kidney. Mice immunized with HBVv and/or alum had decreased cells counts mainly of the red cell lineage (p < 0.001), memory deficits (p < 0.01), and increased activated microglia in different areas of the brain compared with mice immunized with PBS. Anxiety-like behavior was more pronounced among mice immunized with aluminum.”

Rotavirus Vaccine

Rotavirus vaccines are recommended for infants starting at 2 months of age. There are currently two live oral vaccines available in the United States: RotaTeq (approved 2006) is a pentavalent vaccine administered in a 3–dose series at ages 2, 4, and 6 months.

In 2007 the FDA issued a Public Health Notification regarding RotaTeq and intussusception (an intestinal obstruction).

Rotarix (approved 2008), is a 2–dose series given at ages 2 and 4 months. In 2012 the FDA issued an update for Rotarix that included a labelling revision regarding intussusception.

RotaShield® was licensed for use in the US in 1998 and was pulled from the market in 1999 after Reports of Intussusception.

Interference with maternal antibodies is one of the factors that can influence infant immune response to the rotavirus vaccine.

Oral Rotavirus Vaccines: How Well Will They Work Where They Are Needed Most? (full text) The Journal of Infectious Diseases (2009) 200 (Supplement_1): S39-S48.

“Of note, both interventions included a dose at 14 weeks of age; therefore, if levels of maternal antibody are a contributing factor to decreased immunogenicity, administration of a later dose when maternal titers have waned should result in improved efficacy. Although a delay in vaccination could yield a major improvement in immune response and efficacy, it would require some substantial rethinking of the routine immunization schedule currently set by the WHO immunization program at 6 and 10 weeks of age.”

Antibodies in breast milk affect the immune response of infants who receive the rotavirus vaccine, and studies recommend delaying breastfeeding to enhance the response to the vaccine in the infants.

Prevalence of rotavirus antibodies in breast milk and inhibitory effects to rotavirus vaccines (full text) Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics (2014) Vol. 10, Issue 12: 3681-3687

“For instance, breast feeding could be hold [sic] off at the time of vaccination and resume 1h after vaccine delivery to enhance the immune responses in children. Furthermore, this study has added to the scarce literature available on the effects of breast milk on the efficacy of RV vaccines used in different socioeconomic settings.”

Inhibitory Effect of Breast Milk on Infectivity of Live Oral Rotavirus Vaccines (full text) Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal. (2010) Oct; 29(10): 919–923.

“Some caveats should be considered in interpreting our data. First, we only examined antibody and neutralizing activity in breast milk from mothers in 4 countries; more specimens from other parts of the world including Africa and Asia should be examined to fully assess the potential negative impact of breast milk on live oral rotavirus vaccines in different settings. Second, while the observed high titers of antibody and in vitro neutralization activity of breast milk suggest a potential for substantial impact on vaccine performance, it is not possible to directly translate these findings into the real-world impact as this will be affected by many other factors such as the timing and amount of breast milk in the gut at the time of vaccination.”

This study in the journal Vaccine states that the rotavirus vaccine has had no impact on the number of infections and that vaccinated babies may not benefit.

Rotaviruses: Is their surveillance needed? Vaccine Volume 32, Issue 27, 5 June 2014, Pages 3367–3378

“Though the introduction of vaccines (RotaTeq and Rotarix) proved to be very effective in declining rotavirus associated morbidity and mortality, the number of infections remained sameUnusual genotypes significantly contribute to the rotavirus associated diarrhoeal burden, may reduce the efficacy of the vaccines in use and hence vaccinated individuals may not be benefited.”

DTaP Vaccine (diphtheria, tetanus, acellular pertussis)

DTaP was licensed for primary and booster immunization of infants and children on July 29, 1998, replacing the highly reactive DTP, licensed in 1949. It took 49 years for the dangerous DTP vaccine to be replaced, while doctors and health officials knew the pertussis portion of the vaccine was “associated with convulsions in one of 1750 doses, while severe and permanent neurologic damage has been calculated to occur with one of every 310,000 doses.”

This study from 1979 reports on “bulging fontanelle” after DTP vaccination:

Increased Intracranial Pressure After Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis Immunization (full text) American Journal of Diseases of Children 1979;133(2):217-218.

“There is a general tendency to under-report complications associated with immunizationsPart of the reason undoubtedly is related to the difficulty in proving cause and effectbetween the vaccine and the untoward response. However, if the complication occurs within 24 to 48 hours of administration of the vaccine in an otherwise well child, the association should arouse suspicion. We wish to report a heretofore unrecorded neurological complication, a bulging fontanelle associated with increased intracranial pressure occurring within 24 hours of a diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (DTP) immunization. We also wish to suggest the possibility that this complication may be missed unless specifically looked for.”

The study below examines the failure of the DTaP vaccine. Health officials can no longer blame whooping cough outbreaks on unvaccinated children.

Epidemic Pertussis and Acellular Pertussis Vaccine Failure in the 21st Century Pediatrics June 2015, VOLUME 135 / ISSUE 6

“Factors that I think are most important relating to DTaP vaccine failure are as follows: decay in antibody over time; a T helper (Th) 1/Th2 versus a Th1, Th17 cellular response; incomplete antigen package; incorrect balance of antigens in the vaccine; linked-epitope suppression; and the occurrence of pertactin-deficient Bordetella pertussis strains.4,11–18 Some, but not all, of these factors may also relate to Tdap failure over time.”

With the failure of the acellular pertussis portion of the vaccine, recently published articles are considering a return to the dangerous whole cell DTP vaccine:

The Pertussis Problem and a Possible Solution Will Parents Go Along? JAMA Pediatrics Editorial Adolescent and Young Adult Health May 2016

“What can we do to protect older children and adults from pertussis while we wait for new vaccines? The model reported by DeAngelis et al, also in this issue of JAMA Pediatrics might suggest an interim approach. This model evaluates what would happen if we brought back whole-cell pertussis vaccines. The authors suggest that we could achieve a dramatic reduction in pertussis cases by just giving an initial priming dose of whole-cell vaccine in infancy, followed by the remainder of the vaccine series with acellular vaccine.”…”But, can we really bring back whole-cell pertussis vaccine? Will parents accept a vaccine with more adverse effects? The reason acellular pertussis vaccines were developed in the first place was because whole-cell vaccine was felt by many to have unacceptably high rate of adverse effects.”

The following studies describe the shocking lack of knowledge regarding immune response to DTaP and pertussis vaccination:

Substantial gaps in knowledge of Bordetella pertussis antibody and T cell epitopes relevant for natural immunity and vaccine efficacy Human Immunology Volume 75, Issue 5, May 2014, Pages 440–451

The recent increase in whooping cough in vaccinated populations has been attributed to waning immunity associated with the acellular vaccine.”…”Moreover, there are a limited number of studies defining epitopes from natural infection versus whole cell or acellular/subunit vaccines. The relationship between epitope location and structural features, as well as antigenic drift (SNP analysis) was also investigated. We conclude that the cumulative data is yet insufficient to address many fundamental questions related to vaccine failure and this underscores the need for further investigation of B. pertussis immunity at the molecular level.”

Functional deficits of pertussis-specific CD4+ T Cells in Infants Compared to Adults Following DTaP Vaccination Clinical & Experimental Immunology Volume 169, Issue 3 September 2012 Pages 281–291

Understanding the immune responses that explain why infants require multiple doses of pertussis vaccine to achieve protection against infection is a high priority.“ …”Moreover, a significantly higher percentage of infant’s functional CD4+ T cells were restricted to CD45RA-CCR7+CD27+ phenotype, consistent with early stage differentiated pertussis-specific memory CD4+ T cells. We show for the first time that DTaP vaccination induced CD4+ T cells in infants are functionally and phenotypically dissimilar from those of adults.”

Earlier infantile immune maturation is related to higher DTP vaccine responses in children (full text) ClinIcal and Translational Immunology. 2016 Mar; 5(3): e65. Published online 2016 Mar 11

“Vaccination of infants and young children is required to prevent infectious diseases in early life, but its effectiveness might be impeded by immaturity of the immune system. However, longitudinal studies investigating associations between the development/maturation progress of the adaptive immune system and magnitudes of DTP vaccine-induced antibody responses in children are lacking.”

Haemophilus Influenza type B Vaccine (Hib)

The Haemophilus influenza type B (Hib) vaccine is recommended starting at 2 months of age and is available in single dose PedvaxHIB, Hiberix, Act-Hib, combined vaccines Comvax (with Hepatitis B), MenHibrix (with Men C & Y), and the 5 in 1 Pentacel (with DTaP-IPV) in a 3 or 4 dose series.

The original polysaccharide Hib vaccines introduced in the US in 1985 were not effective in the undeveloped infant immune system. To circumvent this problem, vaccine researchers developed various Hib polysaccharide-conjugate vaccines that were introduced to US infants beginning in 1988. By attaching the Hib polysaccharide to different protein carriers it was thought the vaccine would “trick” the undeveloped infant immune system into recognizing the Hib antibody.

Hemophilus influenzae Type B (Hib) Immunization Original German title: Zur Impfung gegen Haemophilus influenzae-B (HlB), Merkurstab 1994 47: 170-81.
“Vaccine efficacy increased considerably when the polysaccharide antigens to Hemophilus influenzae were conjugated with the protein antigens to tetanus or diphtheria toxoid. With this, the vaccines were as effective in infants as in older children (review in Meyer and Gahr). This trick used in vaccine production must, however, be seen as a form of ‘poisoning.’ It enables infants to develop the specific immunity which otherwise is reserved for a later time in life. It is not yet known if this premature development has disadvantages in other areas. Nor have potential consequences for the nonspecific immune system been established so far.”

JAMA published a study in 1992 indicating the new, second generation infant conjugate vaccines were worrisome and advised caution.

Impact of Haemophilus influenzae type b polysaccharide-tetanus protein conjugate vaccine on responses to concurrently administered diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine. JAMA 1992 Feb 5;267(5):673-8
“Concurrent administration of PRP-T [Hib Tetanus Conjugate] vaccine with DTP vaccine, either in the same syringe or at different sites, interfered with antipertussis responses to a primary series of immunizations. Although the clinical significance of this antagonism is uncertain, these data underscore the caution required in decisions to add new vaccines to existing immunization regimens.”

Important Hib vaccine concerns include autism and diabetes:

Hypothesis: Conjugate vaccines may predispose children to autism spectrum disorders Medical Hypothesis December 2011 Volume 77, Issue 6, Pages 940–947

“Conjugate vaccines fundamentally change the manner in which the immune systems of infants and young children function by deviating their immune responses to the targeted carbohydrate antigens from a state of hypo-responsiveness to a robust B2 B cell mediated response. This period of hypo-responsiveness to carbohydrate antigens coincides with the intense myelination process in infants and young children, and conjugate vaccines may have disrupted evolutionary forces that favored early brain development over the need to protect infants and young children from capsular bacteria.”

Clustering of cases of insulin dependent diabetes (IDDM) occurring three years after hemophilus influenza B (HiB) immunization support causal relationship between immunization and IDDMAutoimmunity 2002 Jul;35(4):247-53
“Conclusion: Exposure to HiB immunization is associated with an increased risk of IDDM.

A 2015 study revealed disturbing numbers of reactions and deaths after Hib vaccines as reported to the US VAERS reporting system.

Adverse Events following Haemophilus influenzae Type b Vaccines in the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, 1990-2013 The Journal of Pediatrics April 2015 Volume 166, Issue 4, Pages 992–997

VAERS received 29 747 reports after Hib vaccines; 5179 (17%) were serious, including 896 reports of deaths. Median age was 6 months (range 0-1022 months). Sudden infant death syndrome was the stated cause of death in 384 (51%) of 749 death reports with autopsy/death certificate records. The most common non-death serious AE categories were neurologic (80; 37%), other noninfectious (46; 22%) (comprising mainly constitutional signs and symptoms); and gastrointestinal (39; 18%) conditions. No new safety concerns were identified after clinical review of reports of AEs that exceeded the data mining statistical threshold.”

Since the introduction of Hib vaccines, non type b serotypes “associated with significant morbidity and mortality” have replaced the vaccine strain.

Invasive infections caused by haemophilus influenzae serotypes in twelve Canadian IMPACT centers, 1996-2001 Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal 2007 Nov;26(11):1025-31.

“Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) immunization has changed the epidemiology of pediatric bacterial invasive disease. … In 1996–2001, two-thirds of H. influenzae invasive disease in the 12 IMPACT centers was caused by non-b serotypes, which were associated with significant morbidity and mortality.”

Serious questions regarding proper doses and immune response interference in combination vaccines were reported in 2010:

Foresight in medicine: current challenges with Haemophilus influenzae type b conjugate vaccines (full text) Journal of Internal Medicine Volume 267, Issue 3 March 2010 Pages 241–250

“Additional information is however still needed e.g. about new formulations and combinations of the vaccine The amount of antigen was determined to a large extent on the basis of the first clinical results: … it has become apparent that the response to fractional dosages can be as good as with the standard doses. … When Hib vaccine was administered mixed with other vaccines in infancy, one noticed soon that the vaccines interfered with each others’ immune responses. …. During last 10 years, one has also learned about the interferences between different conjugate vaccinesMore research is needed for full understanding of the mechanisms and potential impact of these interferences, to design new combination vaccines and their rational use.”

Prevnar 13 Vaccine

Prevnar was introduced to the vaccine schedule Feb 17, 2000 as a 7-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine from Wyeth Pharmaceuticals to prevent invasive pneumococcal disease. Prevnar 7 was replaced by Prevnar 13 in 2010 as vaccine strains were replaced by non-vaccine strains. There are 92 pneumococcal serotypes, and this Lancet study warns, “there have been concerns that the non-vaccine serotypes (NVTs) could increase in prevalence and reduce the benefits of vaccination.”

Vaccine failure and vaccinated patients infected with a Prevnar 13 serotype are discussed in the following study. Serotype 19A was not available in Prevnar 7.

Vaccine Failures in Patients Properly Vaccinated with 13-Valent pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine in Catalonia, a Region with Low Vaccination Coverage The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal: April 2016 – Volume 35 – Issue 4 – p 460–463

“Among 84 patients with invasive pneumococcal infection, 32 had received at least one dose of PCV13Seventeen of them had invasive pneumococcal infection produced by a PCV13 serotype. Among those, 9 patients were considered to have a PCV13 vaccine failure. Serotype 3 was isolated in 6 patients, serotype 19A in 2 and serotype 6B in 1.”

Further questions about the “uncertainty” of pneumococcal vaccines continue to be discussed:

Choosing between 7-, 10- and 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccines in childhood: A review of economic evaluations (2006–2014) Vaccine Volume 33, Issue 14, 30 March 2015, Pages 1633–1658

“A more thorough exploration of uncertainty should be made in future analyses on this subject, as we lack understanding to adequately model herd and serotype replacement effects to reliably predict the population impact of PCVs. The introduction of further improved PCVs in an environment of evolving antibiotic resistance and under the continuing influence of previous PCVs implies that the complexity and data requirements for relevant analyses will further increase. Decision makers using these analyses should not just rely on an analysis from a single manufacturer.”

Effect of Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine on the Natural Antibodies and Antibody Responses Against Protein Antigens From Streptococcus pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae and Moraxella catarrhalis in Children With Community-acquired Pneumonia. The Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal. 2016 Jun;35(6):683-9

There was no difference on clinical baseline characteristics between vaccinated and unvaccinated childrenVaccinated children had significantly lower levels of antibodies against 4 of the studied pneumococcal antigens (P= 0.048 for Ply, P = 0.018 for pneumococcal surface protein A, P =0.001 for StkP and P = 0.028 for PcsB) and higher levels of antibodies against M. catarrhalis (P = 0.015). Nevertheless, the vaccination status did not significantly affect the rates of antibody responses against S. pneumoniae, H. influenzae and M. catarrhalis.”

The study below states that after 4 years following vaccination with Prevnar 7 there was no difference in IgG responses between the vaccinated and unvaccinated for most serotypes. The study also says that exposure to pneumococcus would be needed to maintain immunity, making way for Prevnar 13. Because of Prevnar 7, more dangerous serotypes appeared, especially serotype 19A.

Persistence of IgG Antibody Following Routine Infant Immunization with the 7-Valent Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (full text) Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal: May 2015 – Volume 34 – Issue 5 – p e138–e142

“In 2010, PCV7 was replaced with a 13-valent product (PCV13, Pfizer) adding serotypes 1, 3, 5, 6A, 7F and 19A. Although studies have demonstrated that PCVs generate a substantial immune response, limited data exist on the longevity of the response during routine PCV use when vaccine serotype colonization is virtually eliminated and replacement colonization with nonvaccine serotypes has occurred.” …Conclusions: PCV serotype specific IgG concentrations 4 years following PCV vaccination do not persist above natural levels for most serotypesExposure to pneumococcus may be critical in maintaining persistent serotype specific IgG; the elimination of circulating vaccine type pneumococci by PCV may have effects on long-term immunity.”

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Pneumococcal vaccine failure is discussed:

Invasive Pneumococcal Disease after Routine Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccination in Children, England and Wales (full text) CDC Emerging Infectious Diseases Volume 19, Number 1—January 2013

“Vaccine Failure PCV7-IPD occurred in 248 (20.5%) of 1,207 serotyped cases, and 52 (3.9%) of 1,332 children with IPD had 53 episodes of PCV7 vaccine failure, including 1 fully vaccinatedcochlear implant recipient with 2 distinct meningitis episodes 10 months apart. Serotypes 6B (18/53 cases, 34.0%) and 19F (16/53, 30.2%) were responsible for almost two thirds of PCV7 vaccine failures. Case-patients with PCV7 vaccine failure were more likely to have comorbidities (15/52 [28.8%] vs. 166/1,155 [14.4%] case-patients with known serotype, p = 0.004). Only 1 case-patient with PCV7 vaccine failure, who had immune deficiency, died of pneumococcalmeningitis 2 months after receiving a PCV7 catch-up dose in the second year of life.”

A 2003 study questions the efficacy of the pneumococcal vaccine introduced in 2000:

“Serological criteria for evaluation and licensure of new pneumococcal conjugate vaccine formulations for use in infants. Vaccine Volume 21, Issue 23, 4 July 2003, Pages 3265–3272

“The lack of a definitive serological correlate of protection and the multiplicity of antigens involved, especially since the clinical efficacy of most of the individual serotypes represented in the only licensed vaccine has not been established, are hindering the formulation of criteria for licensure of new formulations or combinations of the vaccine.”

Polio (Inactivated Polio Vaccine – IPV)

Inactivated polio vaccine is recommended at 2, 4, 6 and 18 months and between 4-6 years. Polio vaccines licensed in the US include IPOL (Monkey Kidney Cell) or Poliovax (Human Diploid Cell) vaccine or in the combination vaccinations Pediarix, Kinrix, Quadracel, and Pentacel. The oral polio vaccine (OPV) was discontinued in the US in the year 2000.

This study looks at VAERS reports associated with IPV vaccination (inactivated polio) from 2000-2012 with some shocking numbers:

Preparation for global introduction of inactivated poliovirus vaccine: safety evidence from the US Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, 2000–12 (full text) The Lancet Infectious Diseases Volume 15, No. 10, p 1175–1182, October 2015

“We classified death reports according to previously published body-system categories (respiratory, cardiovascular, neurological, gastrointestinal, other infectious, and other non-infectious) and reviewed death reports to identify the cause of death. We classified sudden infant death syndrome as a separate cause of death considering previous concerns about sudden infant syndrome after vaccines. … Of the 41,792 adverse event reports submitted, 39 568 (95%) were for children younger than 7 years. 381 of the reports for children in this age group (97%) were for simultaneous vaccination with IPV and other vaccines (most commonly pneumococcal and acellular pertussis vaccines), whereas stand alone IPV vaccines accounted for 0·5% of all reports. 34 880 reports were for non-serious events (88%), 3905 reports were for non-fatal serious events (10%), and 783 reports were death reports (2%). Injection-site erythema was the most commonly coded term for non-serious events (29%), and pyrexia for non-fatal serious events (38%). Most deaths (96%) were in children aged 12 months or younger; most (52%) had sudden infant death syndrome as the reported cause of death.” Authors have questioned the “non-specific” effects of IPV and whether it could be “detrimental for child health” and girls who received the IPV had a 52% higher mortality than boys.”

Studies have questioned the “non-specific” effects of IPV and whether it could be “detrimental for child health” and girls who received the IPV had a 52% higher mortality than boys. Also, “previous evidence suggests that IPV increases all-cause mortality by 10%.”

Is introduction of IPV “Good news for billions of children”? (full text) The Lancet Infectious Diseases Volume 16, No. 4, p409, April 2016

“In 2008, following the demonstration of methodological flaws in studies concluding that there was no sign of a negative effect of DTP, the Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety stated that it would monitor the evidence of non-specific effects of vaccines. It remains to be assessed whether IPV has non-specific effects and especially whether IPV could be detrimental for child health. IPV has been used as a comparator vaccine in randomised trials; girls randomly assigned to IPV had 52% (95% 2–128) higher mortality than did boys who were randomly assigned to the vaccine.”

Changing oral vaccine to inactivated polio vaccine might increase mortality (full text) The LancetVolume 387, No. 10023, p 1054–1055, 12 March 2016

“On average, about 75 cases of vaccine-associated paralytic poliomyelitis are reported each year worldwide, and WHO has suggested that OPV be gradually replaced by inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) to reduce the number of such cases. Results from a randomised trial in 2015 suggest that OPV might have beneficial non-specific effects that reduce all-cause mortality by 17%, possibly to a greater extent in boys than in girls, whereas previous evidence suggests that IPV increases all-cause mortality by 10%. Consequently, the proposed change from OPV to IPV might lead to increased all-cause mortality through loss of the beneficial non-specific effects of the live vaccine, and adverse non-specific effects of the inactivated vaccine. Replacement of OPV with IPV could translate to approximately 4000 deaths for each case of vaccine-associated paralytic poliomyelitis prevented, and might cause more than 300 000 additional deaths each year.”

There are variable effectiveness rates for the IPV in newborns, from as low as 8% to a high of 100%.

Oral and inactivated poliovirus vaccines in the newborn: A review Vaccine Volume 31, Issue 21, 17 May 2013, Pages 2517–2524

“There were four studies of IPV in newborns with a seroconversion rate of 8–100% for serotype 1, 15–100% for serotype 2, and 15–94% for serotype 3, measured at 4–6 weeks of life.”

Biosecurity risks in the production of IPV and polio virus strain replacement are discussed in this paper.

New Strains Intended for the Production of Inactivated Polio Vaccine at Low-Containment After Eradication (full text) PLOS Pathogens 2015 Dec; 11(12)

“Most manufacture of inactivated polio vaccines currently requires the growth of large amounts of highly virulent poliovirus, and release from a production facility after eradication could be disastrous; WHO have therefore recommended the use of the attenuated Sabin strains for production as a safer option although it is recognised that they can revert to a transmissible paralytic form. … New polio vaccines will be needed to safeguard global eradication: Sabin strains are known to evolve to fill the niche left by wild-strains so their long-term use is incompatible with eradication; most current inactivated vaccine is made from wild polioviruses so that production presents a significant biosecurity risk.”

Influenza Vaccine

The influenza vaccine is recommended beginning at 6 months of age along with a second dose given at least four weeks apart for children receiving the flu vaccine for the first time. Multi-dose vials of flu vaccine licensed for children contain the known neurotoxin “Mercury (from thimerosal)” as high as 25 µg/0.5 mL dose. The CDC does not specify that thimerosal-free vaccines be given to infants and children, even though these vaccines are available.

Pregnant women are also encouraged by the CDC to get the flu shot “at any time, during any trimester, while you are pregnant” There is no recommendation for pregnant women to receive thimerosal free vaccinations. Protection of infants is limited:

Influenza Vaccination of Pregnant Women and Protection of Their Infants The New England Journal of Medicine 2014; 371:2340 December 11, 2014

“One of the primary outcomes of the study was the efficacy of IIV3 administered during pregnancy to protect infants against confirmed influenza. The vaccine efficacy was reported to be 48.8%among infants whose mothers did not have human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. This means that although their mothers were immunized, 51.2% of the infants were not protected.”

The influenza vaccine efficacy in infants is poor according to these studies:

Influenza vaccination in pediatric age (full text) Expert Review of Vaccines Volume 14, 2015 – Issue 6 Pages 785-787 | Published online: 15 Apr 2015

“The traditional inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV) – both the old formulation containing three viruses and the more recent preparation with four components – is poorly immunogenic in younger subjects; does not protect a significant number of infants, particularly when mismatched viruses are circulating; and is not licensed for those under 6 months of age. Regarding immunogenicity, younger children are quite similar to the elderly, who, because of the senescence of their immune system, respond poorly to immune stimulation

Failure of inactivated influenza A vaccine to protect healthy children aged 6-24 months Pediatrics International 2004 Apr;46(2):122-5.

Inactivated influenza vaccine did not reduce the attack rate of influenza A infection in 6-24 month old children.”

Vaccines for preventing influenza in healthy children Pediatrics International Volume 46, Issue 2 April 2004 Pages 122–125

“In children under the age of two, the efficacy of inactivated vaccine was similar to placebo.”

Female infants have stronger responses to influenza vaccination and “significantly increased serum levels of proinflammatory molecules” according to this PNAS study:

Systems analysis of sex differences reveals an immunosuppressive role for testosterone in the response to influenza vaccination (full text) Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences(PNAS) vol. 111 no. 2 > 869–874, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1321060111

“In this study, we have used a systems approach to the analysis of sex differences in the immune system in humansThese data reinforce and extend previous reports, and point toward a mechanistic hypothesis that may drive the sex disparities observed in responses to vaccination. Differences in vaccine responsiveness in males versus females have been reported for most commercially available vaccines including yellow fever, influenza, measles, mumps, rubella, and hepatitis, among others. As in these studies, we find stronger responses to influenza vaccination and significantly increased serum levels of proinflammatory molecules in females compared with males, specifically LEPTIN (25), IL-RA and CRP.”

Many influenza vaccine adverse event studies are supported by vaccine manufacturers with authors having conflict of interest. Here is one example of a trial including infants:

Immunogenicity and Safety of an Inactivated Quadrivalent Influenza Vaccine Candidate: A Phase III Randomized Controlled Trial in Children (full text) The Journal of Infectious Diseases (2013) 208 (4): 544-553.

“Among children age 6–35 months in the QIV-only arm, 7 children (2.3%) reported a total of 10 SAEs. Four SAEs in 3 children were considered by the investigator to be related to the study vaccines: 2 SAEs (angioedema and acute conjunctivitis), which resolved within 7 days, were reported for a 12-year-old boy given TIV-Yam. A 1-year-old girl had a generalized seizure on the day after QIV receipt, and a 2-year-old boy had a febrile seizure 18 days after QIV receipt; both recovered within 1 day.” …”Financial support. This work was supported by GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals SA; GlaxoSmithKline SA was involved in all stages of the study conduct and analysis. GlaxoSmithKline SA also bore the costs associated with the development and the publishing of the present manuscript.”

MMR Vaccine (measles, mumps, rubella)

Combined measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine MMR was licensed April 22, 1971. The MMR vaccine has been controversial as it has been anecdotally linked to autism spectrum disorders in children. A Pace Environmental Law Review report “found eighty-three cases of autism among those compensated for vaccine-induced brain damage” by the US Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. Some of these 83 cases were from the MMR vaccine injuries. Dr. William Thompson’s 2014 statement admits that CDC researchers “omitted statistically significant information” … “and the final study protocol was not followed” in a 2004 study on the MMR vaccine’s relation to autism. The vaccine injury table below lists MMR adverse events, and when you can file a claim for injury.

Vaccine Injury Table

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The article below is on vaccinomics, personalized vaccinology. The main author is Gregory A. Poland, MD distinguished investigator of the Mayo Clinic, Director, Mayo Vaccine Research Group, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine Rochester, MN, Editor-in-Chief, Vaccine. Dr. Poland et al question the “one size fits all” vaccine approach:

Trends affecting the future of vaccine development and delivery: The role of demographics, regulatory science, the anti-vaccine movement, and vaccinomics (full text) Vaccine. 2009 May 26; 27(25-26): 3240–3244.

“As a result we attempt to deliver a series of vaccines to every living human on earth but it has been a ‘one size fits all’ approach, or population-level public health approach. In view of the advances in individualized medicine, we need to ask the question ‘is such an approach informed by the new science’? For example, currently a 1-year-old child and a 40-year-old 120 kg construction worker get the same dose of MMR vaccine.”

Every vaccine on the schedule has studies that show vaccine failure. In this study the failure in the rubella component of the vaccine can have dire consequences.

Genetic basis for variation of vaccine response: our studies with rubella vaccine (full text) Paediatrics and Child Health via NCBI December 2009 Volume 19, Supplement 2, Pages S156–S159

“As implied, there is a measurable primary and secondary failure rate. In one outbreak, 9.8% of all those vaccinated who had been 5 years before developed reinfection. In a resurgence of congenital rubella syndrome in California in 1990, 43% of cases of congenital rubella syndrome occurred among mothers with a history of rubella vaccination. In addition, reinfection clearly risks contagions. Those with subprotective levels of antibodies can become reinfected, this reinfection resulting in viraemia and subclinical infection. The shedding spreads the disease as well as the risk for congenital rubella syndrome. Finally, the vaccine causes both arthralgias and arthritis in 10–40% of susceptible females. Of note, some develop persistent joint reactions.”

When combining varicella with the measles, mumps, and rubella (ProQuad) there are more associated seizures.

Measles-Mumps-Rubella-Varicella Combination Vaccine and the Risk of Febrile SeizuresPediatrics July 2010, Volume 126 / Issue 1

“Vaccination with MMRV results in 1 additional febrile seizure for every 2300 doses given instead of separate MMR + varicella vaccines. Providers who recommend MMRV should communicate to parents that it increases the risk of fever and seizure over that already associated with measles-containing vaccines.”

VSD is the vaccine safety database, and is not available to the public, unlike VAERS. Most of the epidemiological studies use this database. It is very hard for physicians to access it.

Update: Recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) Regarding Administration of Combination MMRV Vaccine (full text) CDC MMWR Weekly March 14, 2008 / 57(10);258-260

“At its February 27, 2008, meeting, ACIP considered the preliminary results from the VSD and Merck studies, which suggested an increased risk for febrile seizures after the first dose of MMRV vaccine. Given the availability of alternative options for vaccination against measles, mumps, rubella, and varicella and the limited supply of MMRV vaccine, ACIP voted to change the preference language for MMRV vaccine to read as follows: “Combination MMRV vaccine is approved for use among healthy children aged 12 months–12 years.”

Questions remain regarding genetic and gender differences in immune responses:

Twin studies of immunogenicity — determining the genetic contribution to vaccine failureVaccine. Volume 19, Issues 17–19, 21 March 2001, Pages 2434–2439

“Conclusion: Our data support the concept that genetic influences play a substantial role in the variation of antibody levels following immunization against measles and, to a lesser extent, mumps and rubella.”

Epidemic of Mumps among Vaccinated Persons, the Netherlands, 2009–2012 (full text) Emerging Infectious Diseases Volume 20, Number 4—April 2014

“The reasons for male predominance are unclear, but significantly higher mumps antibody titers in female than in male persons have been demonstrated); this finding, in turn, may be linked to gender-associated genetic differences in immune response.”

A very important 2001 study showed that the MMR vaccine can cause increased IgE. Could this IgE “class switching” caused by the MMR and other live virus vaccines be responsible for the increase in allergic disease?

Infection of Human B Lymphocytes with MMR Vaccine Induces IgE Class Switching Clinical Immunology Volume 100, Issue 3, September 2001, Pages 355-361

“Since many viral vaccines are live viruses, we speculated that live virus vaccines may also induce IgE class switching in human B cells. To examine this possibility, we selected the commonly used live attenuated measles mumps rubella (MMR) vaccine. Here, we show that infection of a human IgM+ B cell line with MMR resulted in the expression of germline epsilon transcript. In addition, infection of freshly prepared human PBLs with this vaccine resulted in the expression of mature IgE mRNA transcript. Our data suggest that a potential side effect of vaccination with live attenuated viruses may be an increase in the expression of IgE.

Varicella Vaccine

Varicella vaccine is scheduled for infants 12 to 15 months with a booster at 4 to 6 years. Varivax, was licensed in 1995 and the MMR-V ProQuad was licensed in 2005.

A 2003 study from the UK questioned the cost-effectiveness and safety of universal varicella vaccination, and UK has not implemented universal vaccination to date, stating on their website, “There’s a worry that introducing chickenpox vaccination for all children could increase the risk of chickenpox and shingles in adults.”

Varicella vaccination in England and Wales: cost-utility analysis Archives of Disease in Childhood. 2003 Oct; 88(10): 862–869.

“Mathematical modelling based on these results predicts that, by reducing circulating VZV, universal varicella vaccination will lead to a significant increase in zoster, which can last up to 50 years. These findings support a re-evaluation of varicella vaccination, taking into consideration its impact on zoster. Here, we estimate, for the first time, the cost-utility varicella vaccination, taking account of the impact of varicella vaccination on all VZV associated disease.”… Conclusion Routine infant varicella vaccination is unlikely to be cost-effective and may produce an increase in overall morbidity. Adolescent vaccination is the safest and most cost-effective strategy, but has the least overall impact on varicella.”

There are concerns regarding the shedding of the vaccine virus:

Transmission of varicella-vaccine virus from a healthy 12-month-old child to his pregnant motherThe Journal of Pediatrics Volume 131, Issue 1, July 1997, Pages 151–154

A 12-month-old healthy boy had approximately 30 vesicular skin lesions 24 days after receiving varicella vaccine. Sixteen days later his pregnant mother had 100 lesions. Varicella-vaccine virus was identified by polymerase chain reaction in the vesicular lesions of the mother. After an elective abortion, no virus was detected in the fetal tissue.”

VAERS reports about serious side effects after the second dose of varicella vaccine are detailed here:

Safety of Second-Dose Single-Antigen Varicella Vaccine Pediatrics. 2017 Mar;139(3) 2016-2536. Epub 2017 Feb 7.

“We identified 14,641 Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System reports after second-dose varicella vaccination, with 494 (3%) classified as serious. The most common AEs among children aged 4 to 6 years were pyrexia (fever) (31%) and headache (28%) and for children aged 7 to 18 years, was vomiting (27%). Serious reports of selected AEs included anaphylaxis (83), meningitis (5), encephalitis (16), cellulitis (52), varicella (6), herpes zoster (6), and deaths (7). One immunosuppressed adolescent was reported with vaccine-strain herpes zoster.”

An alarming 2-fold increased risk of seizure or febrile seizure after the MMR-V vaccine was reported, but more studies were needed “to confirm the findings.”

Risk of febrile seizure after measles–mumps–rubella–varicella vaccine: A systematic review and meta-analysis Vaccine Volume 33, Issue 31, 17 July 2015, Pages 3636–3649

“…an approximately 2-fold increase in risk of seizure or febrile seizure during 7–10 days or 5–12 days after MMRV vaccination was found among children aged 10–24 months, although the highest incidence of seizure was still lower than 2.95%. … Conclusion: First MMRV vaccine dose in children aged 10–24 months was associated with an elevated risk of seizure or febrile seizure. Further post-marketing restudies based on more rigorous study design are needed to confirm the findings.”

Vaccine Failure and maternal antibody interference:

Primary Vaccine Failure after 1 Dose of Varicella Vaccine in Healthy Children (full text) The Journal of Infectious Diseases (2008) 197 (7): 944-949.

“Primary vaccine failure in just 10% of vaccinees after a single dose could result in progressive accumulation of susceptible individuals over time and lead to an increased incidence of varicella in young adults. Such an increment is potentially dangerous. Approximately 4 million infants are vaccinated annually in the United States. A primary vaccine failure rate of 10% would thus lead to 400,000 vaccinated but susceptible infants every year. Within 5 years, there would be 2 million vaccinated but susceptible individuals. The present findings therefore strongly support the use of a second dose of vaccine for all children without a history of disease.”

Younger Age at Vaccination May Increase Risk of Varicella Vaccine Failure (full text) The Journal of Infectious Diseases (2002) 186 (1): 102-105.

We found a trend toward increased risk of breakthrough disease with younger age at vaccination. Children vaccinated at <14 months of age had a 3 times higher risk of breakthrough than children vaccinated at 14 months of age. In part because of small numbers, this finding did not achieve statistical significance. Data from a prelicensure trial of varicella vaccine indicated that infants and young children may have maternal antibody to varicella after their first birthday. [11] White et al. [11] reported that 47% of children at age 12 months had detectable antibody; by age 16 months, only 4% of children had detectable antibodies.”

Hepatitis A Vaccine

Note: Hepatitis A is required in 21 states (Immunization Action Coalition)

The Hepatitis A vaccine was introduced in 1995. The first recommendations were for children at risk. Hepatitis A vaccine is manufactured with human fetal cell lines. The following is a study explaining how DNA from fetal cells could cause autistic disorders. In those with mitochondrial disease the odds of antibody failure and adverse events are increased.

Genetic Evidence for Elevated Pathogenicity of Mitochondrial DNA Heteroplasmy in Autism Spectrum PLOS Genetics Published: October 28, 2016

“Although ASD is traditionally described as a developmental disorder of the central nervous system, emerging evidence suggests that systemic physiological abnormalities, including dysregulated inflammation and immune system, elevated oxidative stress, and mitochondrial dysfunction, are present in peripheral tissues as well as in brains of autistic patients.”

Vaccines, biotechnology and their connection with induced abortion. Cuad. Bioét. XIX, 2008/2ª

“Diploid cells (WI-38, MRC-5) vaccines have their origin in induced abortions. Among these vaccines we find the following: rubella, measles, mumps, rabies, polio, smallpox, hepatitis A, chickenpox, and herpes zoster. Nowadays, other abortion tainted vaccines cultivated on transformed cells (293, PER.C6) are in the pipeline: flu, Respiratory Syncytial and parainfluenza viruses, HIV, West Nile virus, Ebola, Marburg and Lassa, hepatitis B and C, foot and mouth disease, Japanese encephalitis, dengue, tuberculosis, anthrax, plague, tetanus and malaria.”

Impact of environmental factors on the prevalence of autistic disorder after 1979 The Journal of Public Health and Epidemiology Vol. 6(9), pp. 271-286, September 2014

“Varicella and Hepatitis A immunization coverage was significantly correlated to autistic disorder cases. R software was used to calculate change points. Autistic disorder change points years are coincident with introduction of vaccines manufactured using human fetal cell lines, containing fetal and retroviral contaminants, into childhood vaccine regimens. This pattern was repeated in the US, UK, Western Australia and Denmark. Thus, rising autistic disorder prevalence is directly related to vaccines manufactured utilizing human fetal cells.”

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Another study on autoimmunity stated “Clinical evaluation of potential autoimmune side effects and the establishment of appropriate laboratory test protocols are crucial.”

Autoimmunity and Hepatitis A Vaccine in Children (pdf) Journal of Investigational Allergology and Clinical Immunology 2011; Vol. 21(5): 389-393

We found transient ANA positivity in 25% of children after hepatitis A vaccination; just 2 of these children remained positive but there was no evidence of autoimmune disease. However, other factors such as ethnicity and environment may influence the appearance of autoantibodies following vaccination. In conclusion, a larger study is required to examine the relationship between hepatitis A vaccination and autoimmunity development. Clinical evaluation of potential autoimmune side effects and the establishment of appropriate laboratory test protocols are crucial.”

Studies reporting adverse events following hepatitis A vaccine:

Possible Association of Guillain-Barre Syndrome and Hepatitis A Vaccination (full text free registration) Pediatric Infectious Disease Journal June 2004 – Volume 23 – Issue 6 – pp 586-588 (free registration) through Medscape

“A 1 1/2-year-old previously healthy child was hospitalized for progressive weakness for 5 days. Ten days before admission, he received the first dose of the hepatitis A vaccine (HAVRIX 720). Five days later, he refused to walk, was weak and anorexic and had a low grade fever. No history of febrile illness was reported during the previous month.”…”In our patient, the association of Guillain-Barré syndrome with hepatitis A vaccine is supported by temporal proximity of the vaccination with the onset of symptoms, lack of other precipitating factors and the immune-mediated nature of the manifestation.”

Statistical and Ontological Analysis of Adverse Events Associated with Monovalent and Combination Vaccines against Hepatitis A and B Diseases (full text) Scientific Reports – Nature2016; 6: 34318. Published online 2016 Oct 3
“Table 1 Havrix-specific adverse events, the AEs included in pregnancy, neonatal or perinatal disorder (e.g., abortion spontaneous and unintended pregnancy) were relatively frequent AEs.”

HAVRIX (Hepatitis A Vaccine) Suspension for Intramuscular Injection Initial U.S. Approval – Package Insert – FDA www.fda.gov

“Among subjects who received HAVRIX concomitantly with other childhood vaccines, 0.9% (8/909) reported a serious adverse event. In these 4 studies, there were 4 reports of seizure within 31 days post-vaccination these occurred 2, 9, and 27 days following the first dose of HAVRIX administered alone and 12 days following the second dose of HAVRIX. In 1 subject who received INFANRIX® (Diphtheria and Tetanus Toxoids and Acellular Pertussis Vaccine Adsorbed) and Hib conjugate vaccine followed by HAVRIX 6 weeks later, bronchial hyperreactivity and respiratory distress were reported on the day of administration of HAVRIX alone.”

In addition to reports in clinical trials, worldwide voluntary reports of adverse events received for HAVRIX since market introduction of this vaccine are listed below. This list includes serious adverse events or events which have a suspected causal connection to components of HAVRIX or other vaccines or drugs.

Because these events are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to the vaccine.

  • Postmarketing Experience
  • Infections and Infestations
  • Rhinitis
  • Blood and Lymphatic System Disorders
  • Thrombocytopenia
  • Immune System Disorders
  • Anaphylactic reaction, anaphylactoid reaction, serum sickness–like syndrome.
  • Nervous System Disorders
  • Convulsion, dizziness, encephalopathy, Guillain-Barré syndrome, hypoesthesia, multiple sclerosis, myelitis, neuropathy, paresthesia, somnolence, syncope
  • Vascular Disorders Vasculitis.
  • Respiratory, Thoracic, and Mediastinal Disorders
  • Hepatobiliary Disorders
  • Hepatitis, jaundice.
  • Skin and Subcutaneous Tissue Disorders
  • Angioedema, erythema multiforme, hyperhidrosis
  • Congenital, Familial, and Genetic Disorders, Congenital anomaly.
  • Musculoskeletal and Connective Tissue Disorders, Musculoskeletal stiffness.
  • General Disorders and Administration Site Conditions
  • Chills, influenza-like symptoms, injection site reaction, local swelling.”

Existing research has not tested entire schedule

A 2013 Institute of Medicine report titled The Childhood Immunization Schedule and Safety: Stakeholder Concerns, Scientific Evidence, and Future Studies states:

“In summary, few studies have comprehensively assessed the association between the entire immunization schedule or variations in the overall schedule and categories of health outcomes, and no study has directly examined health outcomes and stakeholder concerns in precisely the way that the committee was charged to address in its statement of task. No studies have compared the differences in health outcomes that some stakeholders questioned between entirely unimmunized populations of children and fully immunized children. Experts who addressed the committee pointed not to a body of evidence that had been overlooked but rather to the fact that existing research has not been designed to test the entire immunization schedule. The committee believes that although the available evidence is reassuring, studies designed to examine the long-term effects of the cumulative number of vaccines or other aspects of the immunization schedule have not been conducted.”

There are over 19,000 serious adverse events in children under three according to VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System). These VAERS reports are a “small fraction” of the adverse events that occurred due to significant underreporting. An untested infant vaccination schedule with tens of thousands of adverse events reported is unacceptable. A moratorium on all vaccine mandates should be put in place immediately until this situation is rectified.

 5) Do the benefits outweigh the risks?

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As we have seen, vaccines often interfere with natural immunity, and by targeting lesser and virtually “benign” diseases for vaccination, we actually increase our risks and rate of death later in life.

Here’s a short video where two doctors give a quick rundown of the risks and benefits of the Varicella vaccine:

SIMILAR DISEASES FOR WHICH NO VACCINE EXISTS

Tuberculosis

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Scarlet Fever

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Scurvy

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So after looking at all of these diseases in comparison, the benefits of vaccination really appear to be much more mild than we have been led to believe. The primary reason all of these diseases declined on a similar trajectory path on a very similar time frame is not due to vaccination. Nutrition and improvements in sanitation are and always will be the primary keys to preventing and effectively treating infectious disease.

In the end, the power lies in your hands. Armed with the right knowledge, you have the tools to make the most informed choice possible for you and your children. Please choose wisely.

References:

http://www.nvic.org/CMSTemplates/NVIC/pdf/49-Doses-PosterB.pdf

Additional Medical Journal References:

http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp0910064

 

87 Published Works on Vaccines and Adverse Health Concerns

Article retrieved from: 87 Published Works on Vaccines and Adverse Health Concerns

Although safety is not my sole reason for declining vaccines, it is one. I want to take this opportunity to provide a resource – an offer of research that examines the safety and health risks associated when a vaccine is utilized in the determent of a specific disease.

Below is published research that proposes concern in the safety of vaccines to the health of the individual. I encourage you to click on the title to review the published work for yourself – however, I included a brief synopsis directly from the published work.

Also – I am including some valuable links that I have referenced over the years (and still do) at the bottom of this post.

(*Please note: Although the DTP vaccine is still administered in other parts of the world it is not currently included on the United State’s CDC schedule, because of this, I did NOT include any research regarding the safety of this vaccine – although the published research out there is abundant. One exception: the Allergy/Asthma section contain a few references of the DTP vaccine because the association was not due to the specific DTP injection but rather to the diphtheria and tetanus toxiod. )

(*Another important note: research cited does not establish causation by vaccine but rather it expresses that the concerns parents have over safety of vaccines are valid and justify further research to assess the long-term impact of vaccination)

Safety Concern: Neurologic & Immune Dysfunction/Development  

Primary Immunization of Premature Infants with Gestational Age <35 Weeks: Cardiorespiratory Complications and C-Reactive Protein Responses Associated with Administration of Single and Multiple Separate Vaccines Simultaneously

The Journal of Pediatrics 2007

CRP (cardio-respiratory complications) level is expected to be elevated in the 48 hours following immunization. In a minority of infants immunized, cardiorespiratory events were associated with presumed need for intervention. Underlying medical conditions and possibly multiple injections are associated with cardiorespiratory events. Precautionary monitoring following immunizations is warranted.

Neurodevelopmental disorders following thimerosal-containing childhood immunizations: a follow-up analysis

International Journal of Toxicology  2004

The present study provides additional epidemiological evidence supporting previous epidemiological, clinical and experimental evidence that administration of thimerosal-containing vaccines in the United States resulted in a significant number of children developing NDs (neuro-developmental disorders)
(thimerosal is in the following vaccines Tripedia (DTaP),Afluria (Influenza), Fluvirin (Influenza), Flulaval (Influenza), Fluzone (Influenza),Decavac (Td), Mass Biologics (Td))

Child influenza vaccination: Ramifications of adverse events in children in Australia

British Medical Journal (BMJ) 2010

Many serious adverse reactions to this year’s seasonal influenza vaccine have occurred across Australia, and its use remains suspended in children aged 5 years and under.1 2 3 Data released on 1 June 2010 show that 1 in every 110 young children vaccinated with the CSL vaccine had a febrile seizure.

Influence of pediatric vaccines on amygdala growth and opioid ligand binding in rhesus macaque infants: A pilot study

Acta Neurobiologiae Experimentalis 2010

This longitudinal, case-control pilot study examined amygdala growth in rhesus macaque infants receiving the complete US childhood vaccine schedule (1994-1999). …results suggest that maturational changes in amygdala volume and the binding capacity of [C]DPN in the amygdala was significantly altered in infant macaques receiving the vaccine schedule/ The macaque infant is a relevant animal model in which to investigate specific environmental exposures and structural/functional neuroimaging during neurodevelopment.

Abnormal measles-mumps-rubella antibodies and CNS autoimmunity in children with autism

Journal of Biomedical Science 2002

The MMR antibody in autistic sera detected measles HA protein, which is unique to the measles subunit of the vaccine. Furthermore, over 90% of MMR antibody-positive autistic sera were also positive for MBP autoantibodies, suggesting a strong association between MMR and CNS autoimmunity in autism. Stemming from this evidence, we suggest that an inappropriate antibody response to MMR, specifically the measles component thereof, might be related to pathogenesis of autism.

Conjugate vaccines may predispose children to autism spectrum disorders

Medical Hypotheses 2011

Conjugate vaccines fundamentally change the manner in which the immune systems of infants and young children function by deviating their immune responses to the targeted carbohydrate antigens from a state of hypo-responsiveness to a robust B2 B cell mediated response. This period of hypo-responsiveness to carbohydrate antigens coincides with the intense myelination process in infants and young children, and conjugate vaccines may have disrupted evolutionary forces that favored early brain development over the need to protect infants and young children from capsular bacteria.

Integrating experimental (in vitro and in vivo) neurotoxicity studies of low-dose thimerosal relevant to vaccines

Neurochemical Research 2011
There is a need to interpret neurotoxic studies to help deal with uncertainties surrounding pregnant mothers, newborns and young children who must receive repeated doses of Thimerosal-containing vaccines (TCVs). Thimerosal at concentrations relevant for infants’ exposure (in vaccines) is toxic to cultured human-brain cells and to laboratory animals. The persisting use of TCV (in developing countries) is counterintuitive to global efforts to lower Hg exposure and to ban Hg in medical products; its continued use in TCV requires evaluation of a sufficiently nontoxic level of ethylmercury compatible with repeated exposure (co-occurring with adjuvant-Al) during early life.

Safety Concern: Aluminum Adjuvants

Aluminum Vaccine Adjuvants: Are they Safe?

Current Medicinal Chemistry 2011

Aluminum is an experimentally demonstrated neurotoxin and the most commonly used vaccine adjuvant. Despite almost 90 years of widespread use of aluminum adjuvants, medical science’s understanding about their mechanisms of action is still remarkably poor. There is also a concerning scarcity of data on toxicology and pharmacokinetics of these compounds. In spite of this, the notion that aluminum in vaccines is safe appears to be widely accepted. Experimental research, however, clearly shows that aluminum adjuvants have a potential to induce serious immunological disorders in humans. In particular, aluminum in adjuvant form carries a risk for autoimmunity, long-term brain inflammation and associated neurological complications and may thus have profound and widespread adverse health consequences.

Mechanisms of aluminum adjuvant toxicity and autoimmunity in pediatric populations

Lupus 2012

Immune challenges during early development, including those vaccine-induced, can lead to permanent detrimental alterations of the brain and immune function. Experimental evidence also shows that simultaneous administration of as little as two to three immune adjuvants can overcome genetic resistance to autoimmunity. In summary, research evidence shows that increasing concerns about current vaccination practices may indeed be warranted. Because children may be most at risk of vaccine-induced complications, a rigorous evaluation of the vaccine-related adverse health impacts in the pediatric population is urgently needed

Aluminum hydroxide injections lead to motor deficits and motor neuron degeneration

Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry 2009
The demonstrated neurotoxicity of aluminum hydroxide and its relative ubiquity as an adjuvant suggest that greater scrutiny by the scientific community is warranted.

Long-term Persistence of Vaccine-Derived Aluminum Hydroxide is Associated with Chronic Cognitive Dysfunction

Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry 2009

Macrophagic myofasciitis (MMF) is an emerging condition, characterized by specific muscle lesions assessing long-term persistence of aluminum hydroxide within macrophages at the site of previous immunization. Long-term persistence of vaccine-derived aluminum hydroxide within the body assessed by MMF is associated with cognitive dysfunction, not solely due to chronic pain, fatigue and depression.

Long-term follow-up of cognitive dysfunction in patients with aluminum hydroxide-induced macrophagic myofasciitis (MMF).

Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry 2011

Macrophagic myofasciitis (MMF) is characterized by specific muscle lesions assessing long-term persistence of aluminum hydroxide within macrophages at the site of previous immunization. Affected patients are middle-aged adults, mainly presenting with diffuse arthromyalgias, chronic fatigue, and cognitive dysfunction.

Do aluminum vaccine adjuvants contribute to the rising prevalence of autism?

Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry 2011

The application of the Hill’s criteria to these data indicates that the correlation between Al in vaccines and ASD may be causal. Because children represent a fraction of the population most at risk for complications following exposure to Al, a more rigorous evaluation of Al adjuvant safety seems warranted.

The immunobiology of aluminium adjuvants: how do they really work?

Trends in Immunology 2010

Aluminium adjuvants potentiate the immune response, thereby ensuring the potency and efficacy of typically sparingly available antigen. Their concomitant critical importance in mass vaccination programmes may have prompted recent intense interest in understanding how they work and their safety. Progress in these areas is stymied, however, by a lack of accessible knowledge pertaining to the bioinorganic chemistry of aluminium adjuvants, and, consequently, the inappropriate application and interpretation of experimental models of their mode of action

Aluminum inclusion macrophagic myofasciitis: a recently identified condition

Immunology and Allergy Clinics of North America 2003

The authors conclude that the persistence of aluminum hydroxide at the site of intramuscular injection is a novel finding which has an exact significance that remains to be established fully. It seems mandatory to evaluate possible long-term adverse effects induced by this compound, because this issue has not been addressed (in the past, aluminum hydroxide was believed to be cleared quickly from the body). If safety concerns about the long-term effects of aluminum hydroxide are confirmed, novel and alternative vaccine adjuvants to rescue vaccine-based strategies should be proposed to ensure the enormous benefit for public health that these vaccines provide worldwide.

Macrophagic myofasciitis lesions assess long-term persistence of vaccine-derived aluminum hydroxide in muscle

Brain 2001

In the present study, intracytoplasmic inclusions were constantly detected in macrophages of the MMF lesion, and were shown to contain aluminium by three different methods. Hisotry revealed that all MMF patients has been immunized 3 months to 8 years before muscle biopsy by aluminiun-containing vaccines.

A role for the body burden of aluminium in vaccine-associated macrophagic myofasciitis and chronic fatigue syndrome

Medical Hypotheses 2008

Macrophagic myofasciitis and chronic fatigue syndrome are severely disabling conditions which may be caused by adverse reactions to aluminium-containing adjuvants in vaccines. While a little is known of disease aetiology both conditions are characterised by an aberrant immune response, have a number of prominent symptoms in common and are coincident in many individuals.

Aluminum as an adjuvant in Crohn’s disease induction
Lupus 2012

The inflammasome plays a central role in Al mode of action and in CD pathophysiology. It is suggested that Al adjuvant activity can fit between the aberrations of innate and adaptive immune responses occurring in CD. The CD mucosa is confronted with numerous inappropriate bacterial components adsorbed on the Al compound surface, constituting a pro-inflammatory supra-adjuvant. Al fits the diagnostic criteria of the newly described autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants. If a cause and effect relationship can be established, the consequences will greatly impact public health and CD prevention and management.

Safety Concern: Brain Inflammation Post Vaccination

Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis

Neurology 2007

Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) is an immune-mediated inflammatory disorder of the CNS characterized by a widespread demyelination that predominantly involves the white matter of the brain and spinal cord. The condition is usually precipitated by a viral infection or vaccination.

A Case Series of Children with Apparent Mercury Toxic Encephalopathies Manifesting with Clinical Symptoms of Regressive Autistic Disorders

Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health 2007

Eight of nine patients (one patient was found to have an ASD due to Rett’s syndrome) (a) had regressive ASDs; (b) had elevated levels of androgens; (c) excreted significant amounts of mercury post chelation challenge; (d) had biochemical evidence of decreased function in their glutathione pathways; (e) had no known significant mercury exposure except from Thimerosal-containing vaccines/Rho(D)-immune globulin preparations; and (f) had alternate causes for their regressive ASDs ruled out.

Based upon differential diagnoses, 8 of 9 patients examined were exposed to significant mercury from Thimerosal-containing biologic/vaccine preparations during their fetal/infant developmental periods, and subsequently, between 12 and 24 mo of age, these previously normally developing children suffered mercury toxic encephalopathies that manifested with clinical symptoms consistent with regressive ASDs.

(The Rho(D)-immune globulin injection was mentioned throughout this paper – if you would like to learn more about administering the Rhogam shot during pregnancy please check out A Critical Look at Rhogam and Rhesus Disease)

Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis

Postgraduate Medical Journal 2003

Acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM) is an acute demyelinating disorder of the central nervous system, and is characterised by multifocal white matter involvement. Diffuse neurological signs along with multifocal lesions in brain and spinal cord characterise the disease. Possibly, a T cell mediated autoimmune response to myelin basic protein, triggered by an infection or vaccination, underlies its pathogenesis. Recent literature suggests that a significant proportion of patients with ADEM will later develop multiple sclerosis; however, follow up experience from developing countries does not support this view.

The smallpox vaccine and postvaccinal encephalitis

Seminars In Neurobiology 2002

Smallpox is one of the deadliest infectious diseases in history. The discovery by Edward Jenner that inoculation with a droplet of pus from a cow with cowpox protected a person from smallpox resulted in the successful vaccination of millions of people. There were, however, complications associated with smallpox vaccination; the most serious complication was postvaccinal encephalitis, which was reported to occur with an incidence of 1 in 110,000 vaccinations and a case-fatality rate of 50%. Before we become complacent with the idea that we will respond to a bioterrorism attack with a mass immunization program for smallpox, it is important to be reminded of the risk and clinical manifestations of postvaccinal encephalitis and the efficacy of antivaccinia gamma-globulin in preventing this complication. The first case of postvaccinal encephalitis as a complication of the Jennerian cowpox inoculation was observed in 1905. A century later, there is no effective therapy.

Encephalo-Myelitis following Vaccination

Journal of Experimental Pathology 1926

In view of the close resemblance between the clinical manifestations, the uniformity of the histological changes and the absence of similar cases independent of vaccination there can be no doubt that vaccination was a definite causal factor.

The only virus demonstrated experimentally in the tissue of the brain and cord was a vaccinial virus. Experiement did not prove this virus to have neurotroptic properties of exceptional intensity.

Safety Concern: Autoimmune Disease

‘ASIA’ – Autoimmune/Inflammatory Syndrome Induced by Adjuvants

Journal of Autoimmunity 2011

The role of various environmental factors in the pathogenesis of immune mediated diseases is well established. Of which, factors entailing an immune adjuvant activity such as infectious agents, silicone, aluminium salts and others were associated with defined and non-defined immune mediated diseases both in animal models and in humans. In recent years, four conditions: siliconosis, the Gulf war syndrome (GWS), the macrophagic myofasciitis syndrome (MMF) and post-vaccination phenomena were linked with previous exposure to an adjuvant. Furthermore, these four diseases share a similar complex of signs and symptoms which further support a common denominator.Thus, we review herein the current data regarding the role of adjuvants in the pathogenesis of immune mediated diseases.

The spectrum of ASIA: ‘Autoimmune (Auto-inflammatory) Syndrome induced by Adjuvants’

Lupus 2012

During the past year a new syndrome was introduced and termed ASIA, ‘Autoimmune (Auto-inflammatory) Syndrome induced by Adjuvants. This syndrome assembles a spectrum of immune-mediated diseases triggered by an adjuvant stimulus.

Taken together, this global view of ASIA probably represents only the tip of the iceberg. Encouraging physicians and patients to report adjuvant-related conditions will enable a better estimation of the true prevalence as well as the width of ASIA spectrum.

ASIA: A New Way to Put the Puzzle Together: Autoimmune (autoinflammatory) syndrome induced by adjuvants provides a diagnostic framework for enigmatic conditions

The Rheumatologist 2011

Despite their ability to boost immune responses, in the past, adjuvants were generally considered to be inert materials that posed little or no independent threat to the host. Alas, animal studies as well as reports of human diseases have clearly demonstrated the ability of adjuvants to inflict diseases by themselves.10

Aluminum is a widely used adjuvant that may produce immune activation and induce autoimmunity.

From these observations, it appears that the activation of the immune system by natural adjuvants (e.g., infectious agents) or pharmaceutical ones (e.g., vaccines containing alum or silicone), while usually followed by a desired activation of the immune system, could, in certain situations, trigger manifestations of autoimmunity or even autoimmune diseases itself.

The common immunogenic etiology of chronic fatigue syndrome: from infections to vaccines via adjuvants to the ASIA syndrome

Infectious Disease Clinics of North America 2011

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is characterized by unexplained fatigue that lasts for at least 6 months with a constellation of other symptoms. Recently, the AISA (autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants) syndrome was recognized, indicating the possible contribution of adjuvants and vaccines to the development of autoimmunity.

Shoenfeld’s Syndrome After Pandemic Influenza A/H1N1 Vaccination

Acta Reumatologica Portuguesa 2011

Recently, reports have suggested grouping different autoimmune conditions that are triggered by external stimuli as a single syndrome called autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA). This syndrome is characterized by the appearance of myalgia, myositis, muscle weakness, arthralgia, arthritis, chronic fatigue, sleep disturbances, cognitive impairment and memory loss, and the possible emergence of a demyelinating autoimmune disease caused by systemic exposure after vaccines and adjuvants.

Gulf War Syndrome as a part of the autoimmune (autoinflammatory) syndrome induced by adjuvant (ASIA)

Lupus 2012

Shoenfeld et al. suggested that four conditions – siliconosis, macrophagic myofaciitis (MMF), GWS and post-vaccination phenomena – that share clinical and pathogenic resemblances, may be incorporated into common syndrome called ‘Autoimmune (Autoinflammatory) Syndrome induced by Adjuvants’ (ASIA). Symptoms and signs of the four conditions described by Shoenfeld et al. show that at least eight out of ten main symptoms are in correlation in all four conditions. Namely, myalgia, arthralgias, chronic fatigue, neurological cognitive impairment, gastrointestinal symptoms, respiratory symptoms, skin manifestations and appearance of autoantibodies. Regardless of the aetiology of GWS, be it exposure to environmental factors or chemical drugs, vaccinations or the adjuvants in them, GWS fits well with the definition of ASIA and is included as part of ‘Shoenfeld’s syndrome’.

Autoimmunity Following Hepatitis B Vaccine as Part of the Spectrum of ‘Autoimmune (Auto-inflammatory) Syndrome Induced by Adjuvants’ (ASIA): analysis of 93 cases

Lupus 2012

In this study we analyzed the clinical and demographic manifestations among patients diagnosed with immune/autoimmune-mediated diseases post-hepatitis B vaccination. We aimed to find common denominators for all patients, regardless of different diagnosed diseases, as well as the correlation to the criteria of Autoimmune (Auto-inflammatory) Syndrome induced by Adjuvants (ASIA).

The ASIAcriteria were found to be very useful among adults with post-vaccination events. The application of the ASIA criteria to pediatric populations requires further study.

Macrophagic myofasciitis lesions assess long-term persistence of vaccine-derived aluminum hydroxide in muscle

Brain 2001

We conclude that the MMF lesion is secondary to a intramuscular injection of aluminum hydroxide-containing vaccines, shows both long-term persistence of aluminum hydroxide and an ongoing local immune reaction, and is detected in patients with systemic symptoms which appeared subsequently to vaccination.

Macrophagic myofasciitis: characterization and pathophysiology

Lupus 2012

Aluminium oxyhydroxide (alum), a nanocrystalline compound forming agglomerates, has been used in vaccines for its immunological adjuvant effect since 1927. Alum is the most commonly used adjuvant in human and veterinary vaccines, but the mechanisms by which it stimulates immune responses remain incompletely understood. Although generally well tolerated, alum may occasionally cause disabling health problems in presumably susceptible individuals. A small proportion of vaccinated people present with delayed onset of diffuse myalgia, chronic fatigue and cognitive dysfunction, and exhibit very long-term persistence of alum-loaded macrophages at the site of previous intramuscular (i.m.) immunization, forming a granulomatous lesion called macrophagic myofasciitis (MMF).

Animal experiments indicate that biopersistent nanomaterials taken up by monocyte-lineage cells in tissues, such as fluorescent alum surrogates, can first translocate to draining lymph nodes, and thereafter circulate in blood within phagocytes and reach the spleen, and, eventually, slowly accumulate in the brain.

Lessons From Macrophagic Myofasciitis: Towards Definition of a Vaccine Adjuvant-Related Syndrome

Revue Neurologique 2003

Electron microscopy, microanalytical studies, experimental procedures, and an epidemiological study recently demonstrated that the lesion is due to persistence for years at site of injection of an aluminum adjuvant used in vaccines.

Therefore, the WHO recommended an epidemiological survey, currently conducted by the French agency AFSSAPS, aimed at substantiating the possible link between the focal macrophagic myofasciitis lesion (or previous immunization with aluminum-containing vaccines) and systemic symptoms. Interestingly, special emphasis has been put on Th-2 biased immune responses as a possible explanation of chronic fatigue and associated manifestations known as the Gulf war syndrome.

Moreover, the war vaccine against anthrax, which is administered in a 6-shot regimen and seems to be crucially involved, is adjuvanted by aluminum hydroxide and, possibly, squalene, another Th-2 adjuvant. If safety concerns about long-term effects of aluminum hydroxide are confirmed it will become mandatory to propose novel and alternative vaccine adjuvants to rescue vaccine-based strategies and the enormous benefit for public health they provide worldwide.

Recombinant Hepatitis B Vaccine and the Risk of Multiple Sclerosis: a Prospective Study

Neurology 2004

A potential link between the recombinant hepatitis B vaccine and an increased risk of multiple sclerosis (MS) has been evaluated in several studies, but some of them have substantial methodologic limitations.

These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that immunization with the recombinant hepatitis B vaccine is associated with an increased risk of MS, and challenge the idea that the relation between hepatitis B vaccination and risk of MS is well understood.

CNS Demyelination and Quadrivalent HPV Vaccination

Multiple Sclerosis 2009

Vaccination is generally considered safe in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). We report five patients who presented with multifocal or atypical demyelinating syndromes within 21 days of immunization with the quadrivalent human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine, Gardasil. Although the target population for vaccination, young females, has an inherently high risk for MS, the temporal association with demyelinating events in these cases may be explained by the potent immuno-stimulatory properties of HPV virus-like particles which comprise the vaccine. A prospective case–control study of patients with MS or clinically isolated demyelinating syndromes receiving the Gardasil® vaccine may provide relevant safety data in this population.

Concern: Asthma and Allergy

Is infant immunization a risk factor for childhood asthma or allergy?

Epidemiology 1997

The Christchurch Health and Development Study comprises 1,265 children born in 1977. The 23 children who received no diphtheria/pertussis/tetanus (DPT) and polio immunizations had no recorded asthma episodes or consultations for asthma or other allergic illness before age 10 years; in the immunized children, 23.1% had asthma episodes, 22.5% asthma consultations, and 30.0% consultations for other allergic illness. Similar differences were observed at ages 5 and 16 years. These findings do not appear to be due to differential use of health services (although this possibility cannot be excluded) or con-founding by ethnicity, socioeconomic status, parental atopy, or parental smoking.

Infection of Human B Lymphocytes with MMR Vaccine Induces IgE Class Switching

Clinical Immunology 2001

Circulating immunoglobulin E (IgE) is one of the characteristics of human allergic diseases including allergic asthma. We recently showed that infection of human B cells with rhinovirus or measles virus could lead to the initial steps of IgE class switching. Since many viral vaccines are live viruses, we speculated that live virus vaccines may also induce IgE class switching in human B cells.

Our data suggest that a potential side effect of vaccination with live attenuated viruses may be an increase in the expression of IgE.

Delay in diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus vaccination is associated with a reduced risk of childhood asthma

The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology 2008

Early childhood immunizations have been viewed as promoters of asthma development by stimulating a TH2-type immune response or decreasing microbial pressure, which shifts the balance between TH1 and TH2 immunity.

Among 11,531 children who received at least 4 doses of DPT, the risk of asthma was reduced to ½ in children whose first dose of DPT was delayed by more than 2 months. The likelihood of asthma in children with delays in all 3 doses was 0.39 (95% CI, 0.18-0.86).

We found a negative association between delay in administration of the first dose of whole-cell DPT immunization in childhood and the development of asthma; the association was greater with delays in all of the first 3 doses. The mechanism for this phenomenon requires further research.

Effects of diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis or tetanus vaccination on allergies and allergy-related respiratory symptoms among children and adolescents in the United States

Journal of Manipulative Physiologic Therapeutics 2000

Findings from animal and human studies confirm that diphtheria and tetanus toxoids and pertussis (DTP) and tetanus vaccinations induce allergic responses; associations between childhood vaccinations and subsequent allergies have been reported recently.
The odds of having a history of asthma was twice as great among vaccinated subjects than among unvaccinated subjects. The odds of having had any allergy-related respiratory symptom in the past 12 months was 63% greater among vaccinated subjects than unvaccinated subjects. The associations between vaccination and subsequent allergies and symptoms were greatest among children aged 5 through 10 years.

The relationship between vaccine refusal and self-report of atopic disease in children

The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology 2004

In the last 3 decades, there has been an unexplained increase in the prevalence of asthma and hay fever.

The data included 515 never vaccinated, 423 partially vaccinated, and 239 completely vaccinated children. In multiple regression analyses there were significant (P < .0005) and dose-dependent negative relationships between vaccination refusal and self-reported asthma or hay fever only in children with no family history of the condition and, for asthma, in children with no exposure to antibiotics during infancy. Vaccination refusal was also significantly (P < .005) and negatively associated with self-reported eczema and current wheeze. A sensitivity analysis indicated that substantial biases would be required to overturn the observed associations.

Parents who refuse vaccinations reported less asthma and allergies in their unvaccinated children. Although this relationship was independent of measured confounders, it could be due to differences in other unmeasured lifestyle factors or systematic bias. Further research is needed to verify these results and investigate which exposures are driving the associations between vaccination refusal and allergic disease.

Safety Concern: General Autoimmunity Issues

Autoimmune hazards of hepatitis B vaccine

Autoimmunity Reviews 2005

According to Hippocratic tradition, the safety level of a preventive medicine must be very high, as it is aimed at protecting people against diseases that they may not contract. This paper points out that information on the safety of hepatitis B vaccine (HBV) is biased as compared to classical requirements of evidence-based medicine (EBM), as exemplified by a documented selectivity in the presentation or even publication of available clinical or epidemiological data.

As compared to other drugs, especially if their benefit is prevention only, a striking point of HBV (Hep B Vaccine) hazards emerges from the following triptyque: (1) the frequency of its adverse effects; (2) their severity; (3) their variety.

In HBV documented hazards, two main categories emerge: (1) central demyelinating disorders (2)disorders reproducing the non-hepatic manifestation of natural hepatitis B, which leads to question the rationality of injection viral antigens added with adjuvants in order to protect against an infection where the causative agent is not always cytotoxic by itself.

The aim of this paper was to stimulate research on the unusual toxicity of HBV vaccine and to induce international pressure on health authorities in order to obtain the release of the whole of cumulated clinical and epidemiological evidence in the normal circulation of scientific information and peer-reviewed research.

Vaccines and autoimmunity

Nature Reviews Rheumatology 2009

The latency period between vaccination and autoimmunity ranges from days to years. In this article, on the basis of published evidence and our own experience, we discuss the various aspects of the causal and temporal interactions between vaccines and autoimmune phenomena, as well as the possible mechanisms by which different components of vaccines might induce autoimmunity.

Vaccine-induced Autoimmunity

Journal of Autoimmunity 1996

The current review summarizes case reports attributing autoimmune diseases and phenomena to various vaccines and suggests potential mechanisms. The subject is complicated by the fact that one vaccine may cause more than one autoimmune phenomenon, and a particular immune process may be caused by more than one vaccine. The subject of the vaccine-autoimmunity relationship is still obscure.

Laborious clinical and laboratory studies should be initiated in order to evaluate the new emerging subject of vaccine-induced autoimmunity.

Mechanisms of aluminum adjuvant toxicity and autoimmunity in pediatric populations

Lupus 2012

Immune challenges during early development, including those vaccine-induced, can lead to permanent detrimental alterations of the brain and immune function. Experimental evidence also shows that simultaneous administration of as little as two to three immune adjuvants can overcome genetic resistance to autoimmunity. In some developed countries, by the time children are 4 to 6 years old, they will have received a total of 126 antigenic compounds along with high amounts of aluminum (Al) adjuvants through routine vaccinations.

In summary, research evidence shows that increasing concerns about current vaccination practices may indeed be warranted. Because children may be most at risk of vaccine-induced complications, a rigorous evaluation of the vaccine-related adverse health impacts in the pediatric population is urgently needed.

Self-Organized Criticality Theory of Autoimmunity

PLOS ONE 2009

Repeated immunization with antigen causes systemic autoimmunity in mice otherwise not prone to spontaneous autoimmune diseases. Systemic autoimmunity appears to be the inevitable consequence of over-stimulating the host’s immune ‘system’ by repeated immunization with antigen, to the levels that surpass system’s self-organized criticality.

Safety Concern: Chronic Illness

Chronic Arthritis after Rubella Vaccination

Clinical Infectious Diseases 1992

The committee spent 20 months reviewing a wide range of information sources including case series and individual case reports published in peer-reviewed journals and reported by vaccine manufacturers; unpublished case reports from physicians, parents, and other concerned persons; epidemiological studies; and laboratory studies. There were no animal studies available. The committee found that the evidence is consistent with a causal relation between the RA 27/3 rubella vaccine strain and chronic arthritis in adult women.

Giant cell arteritis and polymyalgia rheumatica after influenza vaccination: report of 10 cases and review of the literature

Lupus 2012

Giant cell arteritis (GCA) and polymyalgia rheumatica (PMR) are inflammatory rheumatic diseases common in people over the age of 50 years. Herein, we report 10 cases of previously healthy subjects who developed GCA/PMR within 3 months of influenza vaccination (Inf-V). A Medline search uncovered additional 11 isolated cases of GCA/PMR occurring after Inf-V. We discuss the role of individual susceptibility, the potential function of immune adjuvants as triggers of autoimmunity post-vaccination, and the correlation of our observation with the ‘ASIA’ syndrome,

Hepatitis B triple series vaccine and developmental disability in US children aged 1-9 years

Toxicological & Environmental Chemistry 2008

This study investigated the association between vaccination with the Hepatitis B triple series vaccine prior to 2000 and developmental disability in children aged 1–9 years (n = 1824), proxied by parental report that their child receives early intervention or special education services (EIS). The odds of receiving EIS were approximately nine times as great for vaccinated boys (n = 46) as for unvaccinated boys (n = 7), after adjustment for confounders. This study found statistically significant evidence to suggest that boys in United States who were vaccinated with the triple series Hepatitis B vaccine

Increased Incidence and Clinical Picture of Childhood Narcolepsy following the 2009 H1N1 Pandemic Vaccination Campaign in Finland

PLOS ONE 2012

Narcolepsy is a rare neurological sleep disorder especially in children who are younger than 10 years. In the beginning of 2010, an exceptionally large number of Finnish children suffered from an abrupt onset of excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) and cataplexy. Therefore, we carried out a systematic analysis of the incidence of narcolepsy in Finland between the years 2002–2010.

A sudden increase in the incidence of abrupt childhood narcolepsy was observed in Finland in 2010. We consider it likely that Pandemrix vaccination contributed, perhaps together with other environmental factors, to this increase in genetically susceptible children.

Safety and immunogenicity of H5N1 vaccine

The Lancet 2010

We have some concerns about the long-term safety of this adjuvant-containing formulation. The manufacturer chose aluminum hydroxide, a long-used adjuvant known to potentate immune response through strong Th2 immunostimulatory effects.

Clustering of cases of type 1 diabetes mellitus occurring 2-4 years after vaccination is consistent with clustering after infections and progression to type 1 diabetes mellitus in autoantibody positive individuals

Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology and Metabolism 2003

We previously analyzed data from a hemophilus vaccine trial and identified clusters of extra cases of type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) caused by the vaccine that occurred between 36 and 48 months after immunization.

The identification of clusters of cases of T1DM occurring in consistent temporal time periods allowed a link between the hemophilus vaccine and T1DM to be established. The current findings indicate the there are also clusters of cases of T1DM occurring 2-4 years post-immunization with the pertussis, MMR, and BCG vaccine. The data are consistent with the occurrence of clusters following mumps infection and the progression to T1DM in patients with antipancreatic autoantibodies.

Clustering of cases of insulin dependent diabetes (IDDM) occurring three years after hemophilus influenza B (HiB) immunization support causal relationship between immunization and IDDM

Autoimmunity 2002

The hemophilus vaccine has been linked to the development of autoimmune type 1 diabetes, insulin dependent diabetes (IDDM) in ecological studies. We attempted to determine if the Hemophilus influenza B (HiB) vaccine was associated with an increased risk of IDDM by looking for clusters of cases of IDDM using data from a large clinical trial.
Exposure to HiB immunization is associated with an increased risk of IDDM.

Vaccines and the risk of insulin-dependent diabetes (IDDM): potential mechanism of action

Medical Hypotheses 2001

Immunization with a number of different vaccines, including live and killed vaccines, has been linked to the development of insulin-dependent (type 1) diabetes in humans and animals. Multiple different mechanisms have been proposed to explain the association between vaccines and diabetes. The current paper reviews multiple different mechanisms by which vaccines are known to manipulate the immune system and can induce an autoimmune disease such as type 1 diabetes.

Emergent Human Pathogen Simian Virus 40 and Its Role in Cancer

Clinical Microbiology Reviews 2004

The polyomavirus simian virus 40 (SV40) is a known oncogenic DNA virus which induces primary brain and bone cancers, malignant mesothelioma, and lymphomas in laboratory animals. Persuasive evidence now indicates that SV40 is causing infections in humans today and represents an emerging pathogen.

The discovery of the polyomavirus SV40, as well as its introduction as a pathogen into the human population, was tied to the development and worldwide distribution of early forms of the polio vaccine. It is noteworthy that SV40 has been detected in malignancies from children and young adults not exposed to contaminated polio vaccines, as well as in older adults.

However, the epidemiological data available are recognized to be inconclusive and the Institute of Medicine found that the epidemiological data for cancer rates in people potentially exposed to SV40-contaminated vaccines are inadequate to evaluate a causal relationship. This conclusion is based on the lack of data on which individuals actually received contaminated vaccines, the unknown dosage of infectious SV40 present in particular lots of vaccine, the failure to know who among the exposed were successfully infected with SV40, the inability to know if the vaccine “unexposed” cohorts may have been exposed to SV40 from other sources, and the difficulty of monitoring a large population for cancer development for years after virus exposure.

The Institute of Medicine recently concluded that “the biological evidence is of moderate strength that SV40 exposure could lead to cancer in humans under natural conditions.” This review analyzes the accumulating data that indicate that SV40 is a pathogen which has a possible etiologic role in human malignancies.

Safety Concern: Disease Transmission

Attenuated vaccines can recombine to form virulent field viruses

Science 2012

Recombination between herpesviruses has been seen in vitro and in vivo under experimental conditions. This has raised safety concerns about using attenuated herpesvirus vaccines in humans…and adds to other known concerns associated with their use, including reversion to virulence and disease arising from recurrent reactivation of lifelong chronic infection.

Sibling Transmission of Vaccine-Derived Rotavirus (RotaTeq) Associated With Rotavirus Gastroenteritis

American Academy of Pediatrics 2012

Although rotavirus vaccines are known to be shed in stools, transmission of vaccine-derived virus to unvaccinated contacts resulting in symptomatic rotavirus gastroenteritis has not been reported to our knowledge.

We document here the occurrence of vaccine-derived rotavirus (RotaTeq) transmission from a vaccinated infant to an older, unvaccinated sibling, resulting in symptomatic rotavirus gastroenteritis that required emergency department care.

Results of our investigation suggest that reassortment between vaccine component strains of genotypes [] …raising the possibility that this reassortment may have increased the virulence of the vaccine-derived virus.

Long-Term Circulation of Vaccine-Derived Poliovirus That Causes Paralytic Disease

Journal of Virology 2012

Long-term (several years) persistence of vaccine derivatives in immunocompromised persons and the ability of the evolved variants to cause paralytic disease are well-established phenomena. Recent outbreaks of poliomyelitis in Egypt , the Dominican Republic and Haiti, and the Philippines, caused by evolved derivatives of vaccine viruses of types 1 and 2, support the notion that there is a significant risk of prolonged circulation of the vaccine viruses in populations with a low immunity level, as well as their conversion into epidemic strains. Highly evolved Sabin vaccine derivatives have also been isolated from sewage even in the absence of apparent cases of paralytic poliomyelitis.

Molecular and Antigenic Characterization of a Highly Evolved Derivative of the Type 2 Oral Poliovaccine Strain Isolated from Sewage in Israel

Journal of Clinical Microbiology 2000

An unusual, highly diverged derivative of the Sabin type 2 oral poliovaccine (OPV) strain was recovered from environmental samples during routine screening for wild polioviruses.

The presence in the environment of a highly evolved, neurovirulent OPV-derived poliovirus in the absence of polio cases has important implications for strategies for the cessation of immunization with OPV following global polio eradication.

Prevalence of vaccine-derived polioviruses in the environment

Journal of General Virology 2002

A survey of poliovirus in river and sewage water was conducted from October 1993 to September 1995 in Toyama Prefecture, Japan. In this study, 25 isolates differentiated as type 2 vaccine-derived polioviruses (VDPVs) were characterized.

The prevalence of virulent-type VDPVs in river and sewage water suggested that the oral poliovaccine itself had led to wide environmental pollution in nature. To terminate the cycle of virus transmission in nature, the ecology of VDPVs should be studied further

Transmission of mumps virus from mumps-vaccinated individuals to close contact

Vaccine 2011

During a recent mumps epidemic in the Netherlands

caused by a genotype D mumps virus strain, we investigated the potential of vaccinated people to spread mumps disease to close contacts.

We also investigated the occurrence of mumps infection among the household contacts of vaccinated mumps patients. We found that viral titers are higher for unvaccinated patients than for vaccinated patients during the 1st 3 days after onset of disease.

We conclude that, in this particular outbreak, the risk of a close contact becoming infected by vaccinated patients was small, but present.

Safety Concern: Efficacy Issues/Failure

Why Do Pertussis Vaccines Fail?

Pediatrics 2012

During the 2010 pertussis epidemic in California, there was considerable concern in the press and in public health communications about the possible contribution of vaccine failures to the problem.1,2 In this commentary, I examine why pertussis vaccines fail.

The first reason, and perhaps the most important one, is that our estimates of vaccine efficacy have been inflated because of case definition

Unexpectedly limited durability of immunity following acellular pertussis vaccination in preadolescents in a North American outbreak

Clinical Infectious Diseases 2012

Despite widespread childhood vaccination against Bordetella pertussis, disease remains prevalent. It has been suggested that acellular vaccine may be less effective than previously believed. During a large outbreak, we examined the incidence of pertussis and effectiveness of vaccination in a well-vaccinated, well-defined community.

Our data suggests that the current schedule of acellular pertussis vaccine doses is insufficient to prevent outbreaks of pertussis. We noted a markedly increased rate of disease from ages 8–12 years, proportionate to the interval since the last scheduled vaccine.

Acellular pertussis vaccination facilitates Bordetella parapertussis infection in a rodent model of bordetellosis.

Proceedings Biological Science 2010

Despite over 50 years of population-wide vaccination, whooping cough incidence is on the rise. Although Bordetella pertussis is considered the main causative agent of whooping cough in humans, Bordetella parapertussis infections are not uncommon. The widely used acellular whooping cough vaccines (aP) are comprised solely of B. pertussis antigens that hold little or no efficacy against B. parapertussis. Here, we ask how aP vaccination affects competitive interactions between Bordetella species.

Thus, we conclude that aP vaccination interferes with the optimal clearance of B. parapertussis and enhances the performance of this pathogen. Our data raise the possibility that widespread aP vaccination can create hosts more susceptible to B. parapertussis infection.

Mumps outbreak among vaccinated university students associated with a large party, the Netherlands, 2010

Vaccine 2012

We investigated a mumps outbreak within a highly vaccinated university student population in the Netherlands by conducting a retrospective cohort study among members of university societies in Delft, Leiden and Utrecht.

High coverage of MMR vaccination in childhood did not prevent an outbreak of mumps in this student population.

Waning Protection after Fifth Dose of Acellular Pertussis Vaccine in Children

New England Journal of Medicine 2012

In the United States, children receive five doses of diphtheria, tetanus, and acellular pertussis (DTaP) vaccine before 7 years of age. The duration of protection after five doses of DTaP is unknown.

Conclusions: Protection against pertussis waned during the 5 years after the fifth dose of DTaP. (Funded by Kaiser Permanente).

Review of the United States universal varicella vaccination program: Herpes zoster incidence rates, cost-effectiveness, and vaccine efficacy based primarily on the Antelope Valley Varicella Active Surveillance Project data

Vaccine 2012

The basic assumptions inherent to the varicella cost–benefit analysis ignored the significance of exogenous boosting caused by those shedding wild-type VZV. Also ignored was the morbidity associated with even rare serious events following varicella vaccination as well as the morbidity from increasing cases of HZ among adults. Vaccine efficacy declined below 80% in 2001.

By 2006, because 20% of vaccinees were experiencing breakthrough varicella and vaccine-induced protection was waning, the CDC recommended a booster dose for children and, in 2007, a shingles vaccination was approved for adults aged 60 years and older. In the prelicensure era, 95% of adults experienced natural chickenpox (usually as children)—these cases were usually benign and resulted in long-term immunity.

Varicella vaccination is less effective than the natural immunity that existed in prevaccine communities. Universal varicella vaccination has not proven to be cost-effective as increased HZ morbidity has disproportionately offset cost savings associated with reductions in varicella disease. Universal varicella vaccination has failed to provide long-term protection from VZV disease.

Mumps Orchitis in the Post-Vaccine Era (1967Y2009)

Medicine 2010

Since the introduction of the mumps vaccine, the age of appearance of mumps infection has shifted from children to adolescents and young adults, groups with a higher incidence of disease complications. Serious complications have appeared as a consequence because of the higher rate of sequelae among the older age-group.

Although the mumps virus is one of the most frequent viral causes of accurate lymphocytic meningitis (and this is the primary justification for routine childhood immunization), there are conflicting opinions regarding the frequency of central nervous system involvement in mumps.

Considerations for Viral Disease Eradication: Lessons Learned and Future Strategies

National Academic Press 2002

Important and often overlooked, mass vaccinations itself can also exert tremendous selective pressures and lead to the evolution of new infectious agents.

Risk of vaccine failure after Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) combination vaccines with acellular pertussis

The Lancet 2003

An increase in invasive Hib disease incidence in the UK

has coincided with the distribution of combination vaccines that contain acellular pertussis (DTaP-Hib). These vaccines have been associated with reduced immunogenicity of the Hib component

Safety Concern: Questionable Placebos / Policy

What’s in Placebos: Who Knows? Analysis of Randomized, Controlled Trials

Annals of Internal Medicine 2010

No regulations govern placebo composition. The composition of placebos can influence trial outcomes and merits reporting.

Testing vaccines in pediatric research subjects

Vaccine 2009
The FDA encourages the use of placebos and provides a conceptual basis for the practice. The FDA however does not specifically address placebos in children or other vulnerable subjects.

For intramuscular and subcutaneous vaccinations, injections of sterile normal saline may serve as placebos, but researchers frequently choose other comparative agents. A review of the most recently published trials involving vaccines for children found a variety of comparators that took the place of placebos in children. For example, a recent study of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine with nine serotypes (PCV-9) used as its comparator an active vaccine. Specifically, the PCV-9 was reconstituted with the DTP-Hib vaccine. The comparator was vaccine-diluent mixed with the same DTP-Hib vaccine. In another study, a novel, bivalent, heat-killed, whole-cell oral cholera vaccine is compared to a similarly manufactured, heat-killed Escherichia coli K12 vaccine-a vaccine of no therapeutic benefit. In a third, recent study of a pneumococcal conjugate vaccine with seven stereotypes paired serially with a 23-valent, pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine, the investigators used as the comparator hepatitis A or B vaccines. In a fourth study, the study vaccine consisted of a Pseudomonas aeruginosa flagellar protein combined with aluminum hydroxide and thimerosal. The comparator consisted of just aluminum hydroxide combined with thimerosal.

The Number Needed to Vaccinate to Prevent Infant Pertussis Hospitalization and Death Through Parent Cocoon Immunization

Clinical Infectious Diseases 2011

Parental immunization has been recommended as a “cocoon” strategy to prevent serious pertussis outcomes in early infancy. The NNV for parental immunization was at least 1 million to prevent 1 infant death. In the context of low pertussis incidence, the parental cocoon program is inefficient and resource intensive for the prevention of serious outcomes in early infancy.

Safety Concern: Unexplained Infant Death

Infant mortality rates regressed against number of vaccine doses routinely given: is there a biochemical or synergistic toxicity?

Human Exp Toxicology 2011

The infant mortality rate (IMR) is one of the most important indicators of the socio-economic well-being and public health conditions of a country. The US childhood immunization schedule specifies 26 vaccine doses for infants aged less than 1 year—the most in the world—yet 33 nations have lower IMRs. Using linear regression, the immunization schedules of these 34 nations were examined and a correlation coefficient of r = 0.70 (p < 0.0001) was found between IMRs and the number of vaccine doses routinely given to infants.

Using the Tukey-Kramer test, statistically significant differences in mean IMRs were found between nations giving 12–14 vaccine doses and those giving 21–23, and 24–26 doses. A closer inspection of correlations between vaccine doses, biochemical or synergistic toxicity, and IMRs is essential.

Primary Immunization of Premature Infants with Gestational Age <35 Weeks: cardiorespiratory Complications and C-Reactive Protein Responses Associated with Administration of Single and Multiple Separate Vaccines Simultaneously

Journal of Pediatrics 2007

To determine the incidence of cardiorespiratory events and abnormal C-reactive protein (CRP) level associated with administration of a single vaccine or multiple separate vaccines simultaneously.

Abnormal elevation of CRP level occurred in 85% of infants administered multiple vaccines and up to 70% of those given a single vaccine.

CRP level is expected to be elevated in the 48 hours following immunization. In a minority of infants immunized, cardiorespiratory events were associated with presumed need for intervention. Underlying medical conditions and possibly multiple injections are associated with cardiorespiratory events. Precautionary monitoring following immunizations is warranted.

Unexplained cases of sudden infant death shortly after hexavalent vaccination

Virchows Archives 2006

Experts from panels of the European Agency for the Evaluation of Medical Products have investigated whether there might be a link between hexavalent vaccines and some cases of deaths that occurred. Participants included pathologists with experience in the field of vaccines and sudden infant death syndrome who conducted autopsies. However, to the best of our knowledge, little, if any, attention was paid to examination of the brainstem and the cardiac conduction systems on serial sections, nor was the possibility of a triggering role of the vaccine in these deaths considered. Herein we report the case of a 3-month-old female infant dying suddenly and unexpectedly shortly after being given a hexavalent vaccination. Examination of the brainstem on serial sections revealed bilateral hypoplasia of the arcuate nucleus. The cardiac conduction system presented persistent fetal dispersion and resorptive degeneration. This case offers a unique insight into the possible role of hexavalent vaccine in triggering a lethal outcome in a vulnerable baby. Any case of sudden unexpected death occurring perinatally and in infancy, especially soon after a vaccination, should always undergo a full necropsy study according to our guidelines.

Simultaneous sudden infant death syndrome

Journal of Forensic Legal Medicine 2007

The simultaneous sudden deaths of twins rarely occur and therefore it has received limited attention in the medical literature. When the deaths of the twins meet the defined criteria for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) independently and take place within the same 24 h range it can be called as simultaneous SIDS (SSIDS). The case(s): Twin girls (3.5-month-old) were found dead by their mother in their crib, both in supine position.

Both infants were healthy and did not have any serious medical history. Two days prior to the incident, the twins had received the second dose of oral polio, DPT and the first dose of hepatitis B vaccines and they had fever on the first day of the vaccination and been given teaspoonful of acetaminophen. The Board decided that the available data was consistent with SIDS. These SIDS case(s) are presented because twin SIDS are rare.

More Resources

Vaccine Excipient & Media Summary (Ingredient Listing of Vaccines in the US

http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/appendices/b/excipient-table-2.pdf

Search Clinical Trials

http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/search

Package Inserts

http://www.immunize.org/packageinserts/

 

HEALTHY ALTERNATIVES/ADDITIONS TO VACCINATION

If you are interested in healthy alternatives to vaccination and how you can take back control of your entire immune health, I have several amazing resource reccomendations.

  • If you know someone who is interested in having a child or you want to learn how to improve your own immune health, Dr. Roy Dittman wrote the bible for how to have the healthiest personal health possible and create an environment where your child can maximize their health and well-being potential. Here is a link to purchasing the book (I in no way get any proceeds from sales or am connected with Dr. Dittman in any way):

Brighton Baby a Revolutionary Organic Approach to Having an Extraordinary Child

Be Super Immune

Retrieved from: Be Super Immune

There are many superfoods, superherbs and super products that promote the immune system and these benefits can be transferred over to your child (if breastfeeding).

Your immune system is vast and complex. It is designed to detoxify your body as well as protect your body from illness and foreign invaders.
Harmful bacteria, viruses, calcium-forming microorganisms, and candida are part of our world. Unfortunately, so are toxic chemicals, including everything from pesticides and nuclear radiation to car pollution and most tap water. In our world, these harmful microorganisms and the endless list of toxic chemicals assault our immune system constantly. Coupled with these assaults are the daily stresses of life and their deleterious effects upon
All of these add up to a weakened immune system, which can lead to a host of other physical and mental health problems: colds and flus, chronic disease, skin disorders, digestive distress, nervous conditions, even cancer. When the body has too much to deal with, it stops being able to get rid of its waste efficiently and requires more support to help it fight off what is attacking it.
We can all learn more about empowering our immune systems. I believe the best way to activate the genius within the immune system is by ingesting certain superherbs and superfoods, taking probiotics and cultured foods, minimising toxic food exposure by eating pure organic, raw-living foods, and making healthy lifestyle improvements.
In 400BC Hippocrates said, “Let food be your medicine and let medicine be your food.” Out of more than 40,000 herbs used worldwide, perhaps only 50 or 60 of them are tonic superherbs. These superherbs should be taken for long periods because, like all tonics, they are more like food and they build health treasures within and nourish our ‘stress defence shield’.
Whenever possible, try to include the following superfoods, superherbs, and super products in your daily regime:

REISHI MUSHROOM
Reishi is the queen of medicinal mushrooms. It has been the most revered herbal mushroom in Asia for more than 2,000 years. The Daoists consider Reishi an ‘elixir of immortality’. They celebrate it for its ability to improve the functioning of the immune system by protecting us from the onslaught of viruses, bacteria, pollution, chemicals, moulds, and the toxicity that we are often subject to in our world. Reishi spore oil is one of the safest known herbs and can be taken during pregnancy and while breastfeeding. Also safe for young children to boost their immune system health.

PROBIOTICS AND PREBIOTICS
Consuming a combination of good quality probiotics and cultured and fermented foods, such as coconut and other kefirs, unpasteurised sauerkraut and kim chi, will lead to enhanced immunity as the beneficial probiotic bacteria are symbiotic allies to your body that help fight viruses, candida and other infections, produce B vitamins, and assist in detoxification. Other prebiotic foods such as green leafy vegetables, asparagus, legumes, and green bananas serve as excellent sources of fiber and resistant starch which are prebiotics. Prebiotics are the material that feed the beneficial bacteria and help them grow. Quality prebiotics are actually more important that probiotics because the right environment will cultivate more healthy bacteria than any probiotic could ever supply.

AMALA BERRY POWDER

Amla is one of the most important herbs in Ayurvedic medicine with an incredible list of health benefits. A whole book could be written on all of the potentially beneficial uses of the Indian gooseberry, also known as amalaki and amla berry. Indian gooseberries are one of the world’s richest sources of free radical quenching antioxidants. According to the research, 1 teaspoon of dried raw amala powder provides more antioxidants than the average American consumes in an entire week (great addition to smoothies, along with camu camu berry)!

CAMU CAMU BERRY

Camu Camu health benefits include a natural immune system boost. Camu Camu has 60 times more Vitamin C than an orange and 56 times more Vitamin C than a lemon (highest food source of Vitamin C). Vitamin C is a powerful immune system booster that helps fight off infection and illness. Camu Camu health benefits also include the ability to block free radicals and other harmful pathogens from entering the body.

CHAGA MUSHROOM
If Reishi is the queen, Chaga is the king. It contains the highest amounts of anti-tumour compounds of any herb. Chaga is also extremely high in nourishing phytochemicals, nutrients, and free radical scavenging antioxidants, especially melanin. Chaga is second only to cacao in antioxidant content. It’s the most powerful cancer-fighting herb known, and it fights all kinds of radiation damage to healthy tissue

GYNOSTEMMA
It has been identified as the most medicinal of all the Chinese herbs. It contains 120 saponins (immune modulating molecules that are fat soluble on one side of the molecule and water soluble on the other) — all of which possess specific, dual-directional health-giving properties. This means it boosts the immune system when it needs it, but also calms it down.

CHLORELLA 
Chlorella is a natural, green, micro-algae, superfood detoxifier. It is the highest chlorophyll-containing plant in the world, with 40 times that of the best wheatgrass juice. The chlorophyll binds with heavy metals and chemical toxins, helping to eliminate them from the brain and nervous system.

GINSENG
Known throughout the world for its amazing energy-restoring and strength-building properties, ginseng is an adaptogen that helps our bodies ‘adapt’ to stressful environmental conditions. Ginseng root can boost energy, induce mental alertness, improve the ratio of healthy hormones, and increase endurance. Ginseng also helps fight pain and alleviate radiation damage to healthy tissues.

ASTRAGALUS

Astragalus is a plant within the Leguminosae (beans or legumes) family, with a very long history as an immune system booster and disease fighter. Its roots are in Traditional Chinese Medicine, in which it’s been used as an adaptogen for thousands of years — meaning it helps the body fight off stress and disease. Today, astragalus medicinal healing and treatment uses span many different illnesses and diseases. In terms of reputation, boosting the immune system is astragalus’ claim to fame. It’s been used in this capacity for thousands of years. A study out of Beijing displayed its ability to control t-helper cells 1 and 2, essentially regulating the body’s immune responses (link to study).

When you start investigating and utilising these substances consistently and regularly as part of your overall health and exercise program, you will notice that your immunity will be enhanced. Your thoughts will have more clarity. Your overall energy will increase. Feelings of wellbeing will begin to dominate your life. Superfoods and tonic superherbs can be added into anyone’s diet. Get out a blender and have fun. Make different teas with the superherbs or create new smoothies with the superfoods. Better yet, take your superherb tea and blend it with your superfoods to make the best elixirs ever. Getting healthier is fun

 

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On The Wall: Making the Human Connection

mendingwallright

On The Wall: Making the Human Connection

What is it that makes a person truly free, where does one separate freedom from anarchy, and how does one differentiate determinism, free-will, and liberty?  Undoubtedly, it is those distinctions that create the framework of our lives and define all of our social interactions.  While it can be safely argued that Robert Frost’s poem, “Mending Wall,” is a political allegory, specifically focused on illuminating the post-war political aspirations of the time period when the poem was written, simultaneously Frost is gesturing to a deeper fundamental aspect of human nature.  Frost truly examines society and human behavior on the deepest levels, and through the use of imagery and structure of the poem, he alludes to the division and ideology that is founded in the framework of human society.  Through literary mastery, Frost builds cognizance and awareness in to the mind of his reader, and the poem gracefully parallels the actuality of what it means to be human.  “Mending Wall” is indeed a metaphor for the process through which society is built, and the poem encompasses all the emotions and struggles encountered as humans juxtapose control and freedom amidst their primitive notions.

“Mending Wall” approaches the existential conflict of creating boundaries and protecting freedoms through deep allusions and careful diction.  The poem presents this struggle at the very beginning, “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall” (Freeman 10).  Here the poem opens with an ambivalent speaker expressing his emotion over the cerebral tension he is facing over the seemingly pointless annual springtime task of repairing the wall between his and his neighbor’s property.  This opening statement assumes that there is something inside every human being that longs to be completely free and unrestrained, physically and mentally, and walls appear externally to only be a hindrance to freedom.  For example, by Frost using the purposefully vague term “something,” he suggests that a dislike for boundaries is a fundamental yet somewhat unidentifiable part of existence, not just a specific entity. Moreover, the use of “doesn’t love” in place of the word “hate” suggests a conflicted feeling towards boundaries, such that walls may be needed but not desired.  Consequently, walls are an integral part of human society, and the speaker is inspired to discover what motivates his desire for mischief and freedom apart from those walls.

However, as the poem unfolds, Frost uses playful but insightful imagery to reveal how the paradoxical task of capturing freedom is an arduous one that evokes primeval emotions in the heart of the speaker.  First, the narrator begins by explaining why he and the neighbor must repair the wall.  Curiously, how the gaps are made in the wall is a mystery to him because he goes from blaming the swelling “frozen-ground” to censuring “the work of hunters” chasing rabbits “out of hiding” with their “yelping dogs” (Freeman 10).  These bright and energetic images of nature, untamed and completely free, evoke strong feelings of primitivism in the mind of the reader.  The reader is automatically drawn to imagine a primitive, hunter-gatherer society with an embryonic social structure that innately intensely questions the necessity of walls.  After all, it is out of the wild that society was created.  Nonetheless, the speaker cannot understand how the gaps are made because “No one has seen them made or heard them made” (Freeman 10).  Much in the same way, human society intrinsically has boundaries built into it that often breakdown and erode for reasons that people may not always be able to identify.  Nevertheless, the speaker divulges the fact that he is the one who initiates the wall mending ritual every spring with his neighbor, who lives “beyond the hill,” so that he and his neighbor can “meet to walk the line and set the wall between (them) once again” (Freeman 10).  The image evoked in these lines is of a man reaching out to his distant neighbor to meet so that the two men can walk along together and repair the broken wall that makes up the boundary between their properties.  The deeper connotation at this point in the poem is that boundaries are essential, for a reason not yet known, and equal work is required on the part of both parties in order to maintain those boundaries.  Whether the boundary is upheld or deteriorates is exclusively within the control of both neighbors.  The speaker says, “We keep the wall between us as we go.  To each the boulders that have fallen to each” (Freeman 11).  What is important about this task is that it involves both parties, equally yoked for the same purpose.  Each person is responsible for the faults on his side of the wall.

The rest of the poem is devoted to describing the actual task of mending the wall and revealing the underlying sentiments and intentions that are stirred up in the mind of the narrator.  The process of picking up and placing the “boulders” back on the wall humorously nearly requires a magical “spell” on the part of the laborer to “make them balance” (Freeman 11).  The speaker sees the process not as only a “rough” laborious task, but also as a “kind of out-door game” (Freeman 11).  From these lines, the reader is drawn to imagine a fairytale-like world where a child’s imagination is free to build, tear down, and create anything his heart desires.  However, as the task at hand reveals, that child is forced to grow up and become a hardworking, productive member of society.  Frost depicts walls not just as childhood toys, but he also imagines them as a necessary tool for a child’s rite of passage to mature and matriculate in to adult society.  Nevertheless, the free-willed spirit of the narrator is apparent as he deliberates on the purpose of the task.  The narrator says, “We do not need the wall” because “He is all pine and I am apple orchard” (Freeman 11).  This profound metaphor, illustrates that the wall is pointless to the speaker because although the neighbors are nearly opposite in character, they will never be a nuisance to each other.  The neighbor is a stiff and stringent “pine” tree while the speaker is a “mischievous” springtime “apple” tree, and the speaker argues, “It comes to little more: There where it is we do not need the wall (Freeman 11).  Character differences and space appear to be a sufficient boundary for the speaker, and he believes that his faith and sense of trust make the wall unnecessary.

However, as the speaker attempts to explain his argument to his neighbor, the poem’s iconic line is revealed.  The neighbor responds to the speakers reasoning with his “father’s” old prophetic proverb, “‘Good fences make good neighbors’” (Freeman 11).  This line presents the opposite of what the speaker has been arguing all along.  Still, the speaker’s itinerant mind begs him to question his neighbor’s reasoning, “Why do they make good neighbors” (Freeman 11)?  The “mischief” in the speaker’s heart longs to put a new “notion in his (neighbor’s) head” (Freeman 11).  Walls serve a purpose to keep livestock out as he says, “But here there are no cows” (Freeman 11).  It is possible that the neighbor’s stoic response to the “notions” the speaker is throwing at him discloses the fact that the neighbor sees the value in the speaker’s argument; however, the neighbor is stuck wrestling with his own emotions, and he is struggling to express his true feelings about the wall mending process.  The neighbor has intrinsically believed his whole life that fences are a necessity to protect his space and freedoms, yet perhaps now, as he and his neighbor go about the mending process, he is beginning to grasp how the wall is building a connection with his neighbor, the speaker, and not just “walling (him) out” (Freeman 11).  Still, the true intention of the neighbor is never fully revealed because the reader is only left to ponder and accept the neighbor’s brief and quaint utterance as the neighbor’s primary source of wisdom.

Next, Frost brings back the image of fairytales when he says, “I could say ‘Elves’ to him, but it’s not elves exactly, and I’d rather he said it for himself” (Freeman 11).  Much in the same way, a child often has faith in certain things that adults cannot relate to because, as adults, they are so far removed from their childhood beliefs, and most adults no longer have the same imagination as a free-spirited child.  By bringing out this strong image of “elves,” there is something innocent stirred up in the mind of the reader that longs to empathize with the speaker’s childlike purity.  Furthermore, the neighbor’s actions and reasoning are so foreign to the speaker because the speaker even goes so far to call his neighbor an “old-stone savage” that “moves in darkness…not of woods only and the shade of trees” (Freeman 11).  These lines evoke images of a great stone castle surrounded armored knights from the Middle Ages or of a primeval caveman wielding a stone club in his hand, and by characterizing his neighbor as an “old-stone savage,” the speaker effectively personifies his neighbor with primitive creatures in order to alienate himself and protect his own whimsical ideas.  Even so, in the end, the speaker almost mocks his neighbor for being unoriginal by having used his “father’s saying,” “‘Good fences make good neighbors,’” as his only defense for why they are out mending the wall (Freeman 11).  In human society, tradition can be a source of protection for many people.  The speaker sees his neighbor being stuck in his old ways by sticking to his response.  Similarly, humans often cling to their heritage which can sometimes alienate others who do not share the same traditions.

Lastly, the carefully balanced symmetry of the poem meets its climax when the poem concludes with the repeating of the neighbors echoing remark, “‘Good fences make good neighbors’” (Freeman 11).  In concluding with this final remark, Frost has effectively balanced the two opposing arguments.  Twice he says, “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall” and twice he says, “‘Good fences make good neighbors’” (Freeman 11).  Frost elegantly exposes the speaker’s true antithesis: freedom against regulation.  And the questions that are then left to resonate in the mind of the reader are: which side of the wall is truly justified, or is it possible that both can be achieved together?  Frost uses symmetry to uncover the argument that freedom is not possible without regulation.

In its entire context, “Mending Wall” reveals many of the profound intricacies that are built into human society.  Needless to say, society encompasses a wide variety of spheres, but in the plainest terms, human society is the interconnectedness of all human beings through commonality in experiences and beliefs such as politics, interpersonal relations, tradition, growth and maturation, and individual cerebral experience.

Mary H. Freeman, PhD and Co-Director of the Marifield Institute for Cognition and the Arts, explains in her research paper on “Mending Wall,” “Across the relatively long history of human culture, tension exists between conservancy of conventionalized strategies that preserve the relationships of intermodular activity and the multiple flexibility of change needed for the mind to adapt to the challenges of new stimuli in producing unconventional relationships” (Freeman 4).  Freedom is a fundamental desire in the hearts of every person on earth, but freedom often battles the fact that society is built on relationships.  Relationships can sometimes infringe on freedom, and how those relationships grow and persist or wither and die is all based on how people approach their own cognitive definition of freedom and contrast their feelings with the differing opinions of the people around them.

In addition, Freeman points out that Frost has truly captured “the value of opening up the imagination” in “Mending Wall” (Freeman 3).  She says, “the gaps in the physical wall become identified with gaps in nature, gaps in the human mind,” and “one can also see the poem iconically invoking images of boundary walls from the reader’s own experience,” creating “the semblance of felt life” (Freeman 3).  Much as Frost has created “gaps” in this poem, humans encounter gaps in their everyday lives.  For example, she says, “It is the poet-speaker who distinguishes between the ‘gaps’ caused by human agency in the work of hunters and the ‘gaps’ made by ‘something’ no one can see or hear” (Freeman 4).  The image of the hunters creating gaps in the wall alludes to the gaps that are created in human society by human mistakes.   Furthermore, she says, “When linguistic forms are brought into mimetic correspondence with this act of imaginative creativity, iconicity results” (Freeman 4).  In the poem, Frost spreads out human society with all of its flaws, and his artful imitative prose debunks all arbitrarily conflicting claims that freedom is merely restricted by boundaries and that humans are only truly free in a world apart from boundaries.

Moreover, according to Freeman, Frost uses mimesis and structural balance throughout the poem to implant mental images in the mind of the reader to create a more profound meaning.  Freeman illuminates the insightful imagery Frost uses: an “unseen, unheard” wall; “introducing light” by creating gaps in the wall; adding “natural living organisms” such as rabbits and dogs; and creating shape, “movement, and precarious balance” with the “handling” of the boulders that become “plant life” “loaves” “‘as they (are) set (upon) the wall’” (Freeman 6).  Freeman further delves into the psyche of human experience rendered by Frost:

Having created these mental images of the activity of wall mending, Frost has prepared the way for his speaker to ‘put a notion in his [neighbor’s] head’ as he has put mental images in ours.  The ‘notion’ challenges the need for a physical barrier.  It asks the reasons why and, in wondering what might cause walls to fall, invokes the assumption of invisible natural forces and the resulting inevitability of change.  It expresses the human ability to cognize, to imagine the existence of things neither seen nor heard, to acknowledge and accept the idea of change (Freeman 6).

Human society is constructed based on the goal of either freedom or limitations of freedom.  In a democratic society, people have inalienable rights such as life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and the goal is to protect freedom and those inalienable rights: “Before I built a wall I’d ask to know what I was walling in or walling out, and to whom I was like to give offense” (Freeman 11).  In dictatorships, preeminence is given to restricting people’s freedom: “Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top in each hand, like an old-stone savage armed” (Freeman 11).  These are the two extremes, and what Frost examines about humanity is that the walls of life are in constant change and frequently require people to “walk the line and set the wall between (them) once again” (Freeman 10).  Also, there is a great amount of effort that is required in order to convince another that change is a good thing.  People walk a fine line of balance in order to invoke compromise.

On another note, the title is also a significant topic to point out.  Choosing “Mending Wall” over “Mending Fences” creates the ability of networking and togetherness.  As Freeman notes, “‘mending fences’ is an idiom for restoring communication and harmony’” where as a “wall divides but it also connects” (Freeman 7).  Fences serve merely as a “barrier to divide one space from another” whereas walls are “built” between people and serve not just as a barrier but also as a refuge (i.e. rabbits), and it is something that people share in common (Freeman 7).

In this sense, good walls do make good neighbors because the wall is a place that brings neighbors together for a common goal.  As Freeman says, “It (language and the wall) opens up the possibilities created by the gaps between our conceptualizations and our experiences of the world” (Freeman 7).  According to Freeman, “Frost saw himself in both characters” (Freeman 10).  Each character held a different point of view on the necessity of a wall, but on a deeper level, building relationships in society is a process that requires frequent “mending” on both sides of the wall.

Moreover, Douglas L. Wilson, the George A. Lawrence Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus of English at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, took several decades of his life, traveled from New England to Scotland, and analytically traced the footsteps that Frost most likely walked when he was inspired to write “Mending Wall.”  During his journey, Wilson remembers something that Frost said that reveals something provocative about the mindset that Frost was in when he wrote the poem.  Frost said, “ ‘I wrote the poem ‘Mending Wall’ thinking of the old wall that I hadn’t mended in several years and which must be in a terrible condition.  I wrote that poem in England when I was very homesick for my old wall in New England’ ” (Wilson 74).  This quote by Frost is significant because according to Wilson, when Frost initially went to England, he was discontented with his life in the United States, and Frost was looking for a place to get away from his old, despised way of thinking.  Wilson says,

I conceived an hypothesis about the writing of “Mending Wall”: that Frost’s experiences in England had brought about a dramatic change in his attitude toward rural New England and the life that he had lived there; for the people and the places that he had left behind thinking he hated, he discovered that he now felt something like affection; he grew homesick for the life that he had so gladly left, and this experience issued in a series of new poems that were far better than anything he had written previously” (Wilson 70-71).

Wilson’s main argument is that “One could…emphasize the ways in which we are the victims of our experience, limited or, to heighten the metaphor, imprisoned by its iron precincts.  Or one could…with equal validity emphasize the liberating character of experience and stress how every new experience frees us from the limitations of our former condition” (Wilson 65).  Frost was truly liberated by the experience of leaving America and living in Europe, and the personification of his liberation is seen throughout the poem.

Wilson goes on to explain, “So much did the young schoolteacher think himself a victim of his circumstances” (Wilson 74).  However, Frost’s attitude began to change from his experience in England because according to Wilson,

In England, he began to see his experiences in a very different and what we may legitimately call a liberating perspective, as is perfectly illustrated in his confessed homesickness for the old wall.  The extent of this change is measured rather precisely in “Mending Wall” in the difference between the point of view of the poet, who understands the wisdom of the neighbor’s view, and that of the speaker in the poem who presumably does not (Wilson 74).

Finally, after completing decades of exhaustive research on the poem, Wilson concluded,

Whatever disputative equilibrium the poem has may be said to be achieved by a balancing of all the advantages of the speaker—the central point of view, the wit, the humor, the arguments, the invidious depiction of the neighbor—against a simple statement whose full authority is undiminished by all that the speaker can say or do.  A more fitting authorial commentary on the poem, to my mind, is a celebrated remark of the mature Frost, which appears in the preface to his Complete Poems.  He is describing what he calls “the figure a poem makes.”  “It begins,” he says, “in delight and ends in wisdom.”

“Something there is that doesn’t love a wall.”

“Good fences make good neighbors” (Wilson 75).

The true “wisdom” that Frost is seeking to share with the reader comes from his own experience (Wilson 75).  Much in the same way many people go through life building up judgments about others, Frost was imprisoned by his shortsighted view on his life in New England.  Frost originally thought that he was a “prisoner” of his experiences; however, ironically, it was his experiences in Europe that truly enlightened him and allowed him to relate and recapture his love for his life in America.  It was not until he experienced homesickness, while living in Europe, that he was able to fully understand the other side of the wall.  In “Mending Wall,” Frost shares his wisdom and experience of cognizance, and he urges the reader to examine his own life, experience, and relationships and challenges the reader to take a different viewpoint on life.

On another note, Charles N. Watson Jr. wrote an article in The New England Quarterly, and he says that although most readers argue that the speaker’s neighbor in “Mending Wall” is the blind and ignorant one, Watson argues that it is actually the speaker himself who is unknowing and oblivious.  Watson goes through and carefully points out several areas where the speaker is quick to point out the flaws of others because he is trying to validate his own point, but in the process of pointing the finger at someone else, the speaker becomes unaware of his own flaws and actual similarities he shares with the people he is condemning.  For example, Watson points out,

While the processes of Nature gently spill the upper boulders in the sun, the hunters and dogs crash through the wall with a careless brutality. It is a crude violation, almost a rape. Significantly, even the speaker (no friend of walls) comes after these trespassers, apparently on his own initiative, to repair the damage they have done. But just as he recognizes no difference between the hunters and the frozen-ground-swell, he fails to perceive a similarity between the hunters and himself. As the hunters unthinkingly tear down the wall to get the rabbit out of hiding, so the speaker wants to tear down the wall to ferret out the neighbor-presumably to please the “yelping dogs” within him which refuse to let his neighbor alone, which try to force friendship on someone who doesn’t want it. The wall may be a barrier to friendship and communication, but it is also a protector of privacy-a protector even of the integrity of the self against the world’s efforts to use that private self for its own ends and ultimately to twist it out of shape (Watson 655).

The speaker’s neighbor obviously sees the good purpose of having a wall because the wall is something that protects his “privacy” and “integrity” from being “raped” by the cruel and harsh world (Watson 655).  However, the speaker is so bent on breaking down his neighbor’s walls that the speaker fails to recognize his own resemblance to the punishing and unforgiving world that his neighbor is trying to protect himself from.  If a person is unwilling to respect another person’s protective boundaries, the end result is often even greater alienation and cynicism.

Moreover, in Watson’s mind, it is apparent that the speaker is blind to his connection to the people he bashes throughout the poem.  Watson explains how the narrator is so focused on other people’s mistakes that he completely fails to make any connection with his neighbor.  Watson concludes,

It is the complacent and condescending speaker, even more than the neighbor, who “moves in darkness.” The full line is significant: “He moves in darkness as it seems to me.” The neighbor appears in this poem always as he “seems” to the speaker; and the speaker never manages to penetrate behind “seems” to discover “is.” We have only the speaker’s word for it that the neighbor fails to understand him. But surely the central failure of understanding belongs to the speaker himself (Watson 656).

The key point that Watson points out is that if people are so focused on other people’s flaws, people will never be able to make a genuine connection with one another.  However, if a person is willing to take a step back and completely analyze the situation, he may see how there are ways that all human beings are connected even if they are seemingly opposite in nature with great walls built up between them.  People will never be able to understand each other if they are unwilling to see the other side of the wall for what it really is.

Likewise, George Monteiro, PhD and Professor Emeritus at Brown University, takes a close look at “Mending Wall,” and he offers some profound insight on the meaning of tradition and communication and their effect on society.  Monteiro examines the proverb, “Good fences make good neighbors” and says,

Current in America as early as 1850, “Good fences make good neighbors” derives ultimately from the Spanish, “Una pared entre dos vezinos guarda mas (haze durar) la Amistad,” which has been traced to the Middle Ages.  In this form, Vicesimus Knox translated it for his compendium of Elegant Extracts in 1797, and in 1832 Emerson recorded it in his journal—“A wall between both, best preserves friendship” (Monteiro 467).

The fact that this proverb has a deep connection with the Middle Ages further connects the poem with the time in human history when stone walls and social identification struggles were preeminent.  Monteiro goes on to say, “Speech in proverbial form surfaces as the poem’s final ‘wall.’  Since the message the proverb carries is sanctioned by tradition, the poet’s neighbor can retreat to safety.  Resorting to a proverb enables him, moreover, to have the last word in the exchange” (Monteiro 467-468).  Tradition is a crucial founding part of human society.  The poem effectively takes the reader back to the source of tradition by transporting him back to the Middle Ages.

In addition, the neighbor’s use of the proverb also reveals something primitive in the neighbor’s thinking.  Monteiro says, “The neighbor employs his proverb to win his point, even as it is employed today in some African tribes, for example, where participants are allowed to use proverbs in litigation” (Monteiro 468).  Debates and arguments will always be a part of human relationships.  Tradition is sometimes a good source for influencing opinions, however, as was the case in “Mending Wall,” tradition served to separate individuals.  Monteiro further explains,

What finally carries through in Frost’s poem is the idea that the stock reply—unexamined wisdom from the past—seals off the possibility of further thought and communication.  When thought has frozen into folk expression, language itself becomes another wall which cannot know what it would wall in or what it would wall out, but which blindly carries out a new, and perhaps unintended, function.  Meeting once a year and insulated from anything beyond simple interaction by their well-defined duties and limits, these ‘good’ neighbors turn out to be almost incommunicative (Monteiro 468).

Tradition usually serves a good purpose to connect families and communities; conversely, there are also many cases where individuals, families, and communities can be alienated by tradition.  If a family or community is not aware of the negative effect their traditions may be having on other people, the consequences are often estrangement and hostility.  Monteiro’s ultimate conclusion of “Mending Wall” was that “the poet discovers that even when men work together, each works alone…we see that communication breaks down even as men converse” (Monteiro 468).  A wall can be built up, or it can be torn down.  A wall can connect, or it can separate.  In the case of “Mending Wall” and human society, communication is key if humans ever seek to involve others in their cultures and tradition.  Frost is truly saying that through delicate “balance” and careful awareness of “what (people are) walling in or walling out,” traditions can cultivate togetherness between even “neighbor(s)…beyond the hill” (Freeman 10-11).

Similarly, Dr. Wolfgang Mieder, professor of German and folklore at the University of Vermont, in Burlington, Vermont, has devoted his entire career to understanding folklore and the significance of proverbs in human society.  He says, “Proverbs are not universal truths, and their insights are not based on a logical philosophical system. Instead, they contain the general observations and experiences of humankind, including life’s multifaceted contradictions. But matters are even more complex, since the meaning of a proverb depends on its function in a given context” (Meider 155).  Mieder, like Monteiro, was deeply intrigued by the meaning of the proverb, “Good fences make good neighbours” (Mieder 155).  Meider analyzes the history and relationship of the proverb, and he cites numerous instances where the proverb has been used to explain the circumstances of countless situations in the antiquity of human society.  Perhaps the best example that Mieder gives on how the proverb has been used comes when he quotes F.A. Hayek, a British economist and philosopher and a major political thinker of the twentieth century.  Mieder says,

F.A. Hayek, in his classic Law, Legislation and Liberty, has perhaps summarised the legal importance of the “fence” proverb best:

The understanding that “good fences make good neighbours”, that is, that men can use their own knowledge in the pursuit of their own ends without colliding with each other only if clear boundaries can be drawn between their respective domains of free action, is the basis on which all known civilisation has grown. Property, in the wide sense in which it is used to include not only material things, but (as John Locke defined it) the “life, liberty and estates” of every individual, is the only solution men have yet discovered to the problem of reconciling individual freedom with the absence of conflict. Law, liberty, and property are an inseparable trinity. There can be no law in the sense of universal rules of conduct which does not determine boundaries of the domains of freedom by laying down rules that enable each to ascertain where he is free to act (Mieder 168).

The proverb “good fences make good neighbors” has a profound significance in the lawmaking structure of society.  Laws, rules, and regulations must be formulated and established with great care, and those who are in charge of creating those boundaries must be mindful of the best interests of both sides of the wall.  Freedoms must be protected if a healthy human society is to persist.

In addition, Mieder was careful to acknowledge the use of the proverb in nearly every area of human society.  He quotes many prodigious authors, lawmakers, politicians, and philosophers, from several centuries back to present time, who have used the quote in every circumstance from international politics and law to dictionaries and literature.  Finally, Mieder concludes by quoting Benjamin Forgey, a staff writer for the Washington Post in 2006:

The journalist Benjamin Forgey’s report on the exhibition on the history of fences in the United States, “Between Fences,” at the National Building Museum in Washington DC, is a fitting summary for this investigation of the “fence” proverb-despite his erroneous claim that Robert Frost coined the proverb:

The Great Walls of America

“Good fences make good neighbors.” Even the poet who coined this most American of proverbs was ambivalent about it. Robert Frost, in “Mending Wall,” put the line in his neighbor’s mouth, and then proceeded to compare the poor man to “an old-stone savage” moving around in darkness, “not of woods only and shade of trees.” This ambivalence is doubtless why the saying became so popular-you can see both sides and both seem equally true. Or maybe not quite that. It depends on who is laying the fence, and where and why. Sometimes it simply depends on which side of the fence you’re on (Washington Post 1 June 1996, H1).

Even though “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,” there is ample truth in the proverb that “Good fences make good neighbours.” (Mieder 174)

Ignorance breeds intolerance, and what is difficult is that many times both sides of the wall hold equal and valid truths.  However, if people are so caught up in declaring who is right and who is wrong, connections can be broken and insurmountable barriers can be unknowingly erected.  The same can be seen in how powerful language is in building relationships or destroying them.  For example, when a person “decides” on something (i.e. -cide = sui-cide, homi-cide, meaning to cut, kill), he is “cutting off” and “killing off” all other options.  However, if a person “chooses” something, it means that he is willing to accept his choice in light of all of its flaws, failures, and limitations.  If human society is to grow and succeed, people must learn the powerful difference between “decisions” and “choices.”  People must learn to “choose” their situations and “choose” others for everything that they are and everything that they are not.  Happiness is found in acceptance, and power is captured through cognizance.

Mary Davis, a professor at Brooklyn College, and Elizabeth Rose, an professor at Birch-Wathen School, examined “Mending Wall” in an article they published together through the University of North Carolina Press, and they discovered many similar allusions that Frost is making to the structure of society and the functionality of walls.  They said,

We know that the poem illustrates two points of view about life and human relationships.  There are two kinds of walls between people.  The imaginative and trusting neighbor is not without walls, but his are the spiritual walls of mutual self-respect.  The cautious man, on the other hand, feels the need for real barriers, stone walls and doors that may be locked with keys.  We all need to protect ourselves from intrusion by the use of certain spiritual walls which keep intact our quality of living, our philosophy of life…They are the walls that keep people honest and decent (Davis 70).

Walls have a necessity in the personal, spiritual realm, and they serve to create a basis from what integrity can be justified.  These walls, as Davis and Rose point out, are invaluable pieces of human society that make up people’s morals and self-worth.

On the other hand, these authors believe that walls are, more often than not, unnecessary barriers that are built by “bitter, ingrown, and lonely” men, and serve only to “separate people who should be near and dear to each other” (Davis 70).  To Davis and Rose, Frost’s poem bridges the gap between societal antagonists because needless walls breed intolerance, and intolerance is inhumane (Davis 71).  However, in order to “mend” the “gaps” of indifference, they argue that “We must learn the ways of intelligent cooperation with other peoples who share our dreams of security and a better life.  We must encourage understanding among peoples and find ways of working together” (Davis 72).  Frost condenses all of human society to the microscopic level of the individual relationship, and he illuminates that what connects and builds on top of that individual relationship is the incessant process of mending and compromise.  The battle of society is between control and autonomy, and many of the struggles faced in the human realm are expressed in a multitude of emotions that must be overcome in order to reach the heart of the matter: “mending” relational walls.

Living a glorious life of freedom is a delicate balancing act.  Davis and Rose surmise from “Mending Wall,” “Just as we can erect needless barriers between ourselves and those who are near to us, between ourselves and the experiences that are unfamiliar, so also can we be intolerant of ideas, beliefs, and ways of living that are not our own…The true democrat is…gentle…in his respect for another person, his rights, his property, his race, his beliefs” (Davis 71).  In society, a person must be aware of the walls that he puts up.  Are they walls that serve a good protective purpose, or do the walls only alienate him from the rest of society?  Walls can be mended or they can be torn down, but the true fate of the wall lies within the builder.  Awareness is a person’s greatest ally, and Frost creates the epitome cognizance in “Mending Wall.”  Perhaps Frost is arguing that true freedom is only captured through cognizance.

An old, common adage when somebody is at a crossroads of indecision in life is to say that the person is “on the fence;” however, in light of Frost’s “Mending Wall,” if a person truly seeks to express his depth of struggle against some social incongruity, perhaps a more intelligent maxim would be to say the person is “on the wall.”  Such a saying in Frost’s mind genuinely couriers the entire weight of all the gaps, flaws, differences, boundaries, and hurdles that all human beings carry with them as they walk the delicate balance of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  So the question “Mending Wall” truly begs to answer is: How does a person balance freedom amidst the confines of human society?  Apart from each other and alone, freedom and regulation are completely incongruent.  Nevertheless, Frost gracefully brings them together, and by aligning them side by side, he shows the reader that freedom and control can coincide.  He elegantly shows the reader how human society precariously sits on the wall between liberty and regulation, and he educates the reader that cognizance is a person’s only true source for discovering freedom.  Compromise is the sweat of society.  Beliefs, fears, and cultural differences are often monumental barriers to overcome, and as Frost says, “We wear our fingers rough with handling them” (Freeman11).

Works Cited

Davis, Mary Houston and Rose, Elizabeth Lamar.  Robert Frost’s “Mending Wall”: A Lesson in Human Understanding. University of North Carolina Press: The High School Journal, Vol. 26, No. 3 (Mar. – Apr., 1943), 69-72.

Freeman, Margaret H.  The Fall of the Wall between Literary Studies and Linguistics: Cognitive Poetics (June 29, 2009).  Applications of Cognitive Linguisitcs: Foundations and Fields of Application, Gitte Kristiansen, Michel Achard, Rene Dirven, and Francisco Ruiz de Mendoza, eds. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 2006.

Mieder, Wolfgang. “Good Fences Make Good Neighbours”: History and Significance of an Ambiguous Proverb. Taylor & Francis. Ltd. on behalf of Folklore Enterprises. Ltd. Folklore, Vol. 114, No. 2 (Aug., 2003), 155-179.

Monteiro, George.  Robert Frost’s Linked Analogies. The New England Quarterly: Vol. 46, No. 3 (Sep., 1973), 463-468.

Watson, Charles N. Jr. Frost’s Wall: The View from the Other Side. The New England Quarterly, Inc. The New England Quarterly, Vol. 44, No. 4 (Dec., 1971), 653-656.

Wilson, Douglas L. The Other Side of the Wall. University of Iowa. The Iowa Review. Vol. 10, No. 1 (Winter, 1979), 65-75.

Peace Is Now

In times of seemingly unbearable stress, I’m reminded that our lives are ultimately out of our control, and the only way we will ever find peace is to surrender our control to a Power that is much greater than us.

On my way to the custody court hearing this morning for my daughter, out of the blue it started raining, and this small rainbow appeared between the buildings of downtown Hemet.
Rainbow

The rainbow was a reminder to me that peace is available now.  Even though I’m caught in the midst of the fight of my life, and even though we are headed for untested, unknown, unsafe, and frightful waters, I realize that I have to give up my control.  There is something in this place of insecurity that calls me to look to something much bigger than me.

The irony is that in order to find peace, sometimes we must leave a place of security and surrender to the unknown.

Are you also feeling “outmatched” and “outsized” in whatever situation you are going through? Close your eyes, take a deep breath, and remember: peace and happiness are found through acceptance. Accept the chaos and feelings of insecurity, and know that there is a source of Infinite Strength much greater than you that has complete control of the situation.

Perhaps you too will find comfort knowing…it’s way beyond me…

Is an Ounce of Prevention Worth a Ton of Cure?

prescriptions

Please click on any hyperlinks below for a direct link to the scientific journal article.

In our high-tech, clinically advanced, and specialty-driven medical world, we have come to believe that MD-allopathic-Western medicine holds all the answers to all the questions regarding death, disease, disability, health, and longevity. And with this belief in mind, it truly begs the question: is an ounce of prevention really worth a ton of cure? Does it really matter what I eat, whether I exercise, whether I manage my stress, or if I quit smoking and stop drinking? If I get sick “someday,” I know there will be a doctor out there who will have a drug or surgery to fix my problem, take away my discomfort, and get me back to perfect health, so why does it matter what I do now? Here in America, we spend more money on healthcare than any other nation in the world, have the most specialized and highly trained physicians, and have the most technologically advanced diagnostic and treatment tools at our disposal, so what is the worry? More is better right? This is in fact the way we practice medicine today here in America. In our episodic “sick”-care system, we wait until someone gets sick or shows symptoms of being sick, and then we utilize extremely expensive diagnostic equipment to diagnose the problem and then employ drugs and surgery to cover up those symptoms without ever addressing the underlying problem.

'The bad news is chemo can kill you before the cancer does. The good news is the medical bills and health insurance can kill you before the chemo does.'      'Kemo Sabe.' 'No, no..chemo.'

So, let us begin by taking a look at just how effective this belief system actually is at improving our health, preventing disease, and making people well. America ranks number one in the entire world in healthcare spending (nearly double that of the next closest nation) (Murray 2010), we continue to spend more and more on healthcare every year (Fisher-part-1 2003), and our increased healthcare spending has led to a much higher utilization of highly technologically advanced diagnostics and treatments (Fisher-part-1 2003). However, does better technology and bigger spending on healthcare correlate with a better healthcare system and better health outcomes? According to the scientific research, no it does not. In fact, America ranks 37th in the world in overall healthcare performance (and falling farther and farther behind every year) (Murray 2010); by the most conservative estimates, our healthcare system directly kills 225,000 people every year, which means that our healthcare system is the 3rd leading cause of death in our country (It goes 1. Heart disease, 2. Cancer, and 3. The healthcare system itself) (Starfield 2000); and death and disease outcomes here in America are actually worse in areas of our nation where we spend the most on healthcare (Fisher-part-2 2003). “Neither greater local availability of physicians and hospital beds nor the more inpatient-based and specialist-oriented pattern of practice that result are associated with improved access to care, better-quality care, or better health outcomes or satisfaction” (Fisher-part-1 2003). Moreover, our absolute best “preventative” drugs are effective at preventing disease less than 5% of the time (Trewby 2002); our most expensive and technologically advanced drugs are successful about 3% percent of the time in treating disease (Morgan 2004); our finest and most innovative treatments actually do very little (if anything) to treat disease or improve health outcomes (Pereira 2012); and even our most cutting-edge, “gold-standard” surgeries either cause more death and/or are not even better than placebos (Hochman 2006, Moseley 2002). “…genuine very large effects with extensive support from substantial evidence appear to be rare in medicine and large benefits for mortality are almost entirely nonexistent” (Pereira 2012).

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Additionally, as research is showing, we have one of the most wasteful healthcare systems because the vast majority of the diagnostic procedures and surgeries we perform are completely unnecessary. “For US health care overall, the sum of the lowest estimates is $558 billion per year, or 21% of national health expenditures; and the sum of midpoint estimates is $910 billion per year, or 34%” (Berwick 2012). This means that on the absolute best year our healthcare system wastes 21% of its resources, and on an average year, it wastes 34% of its resources. Utilizing such a wasteful system is harmful not only to the individual health of people who choose to participate in the system, but it also immensely harms the overall health of our nation. Let me put it this way, if you had a hole in your gas tank and you knew that every time you filled up your gas tank that you would lose 1/3 of every gallon that you put into the tank, wouldn’t you want to try and figure out a way to fix the leak? Why do you think some hospitals charge upwards of $800 for a bag of normal saline that can be purchased for less than $1 wholesale cost? Is it really necessary to have repeated x-rays, CTs, MRIs, angiograms, and other extremely expensive diagnostic tests done on one person? The system not only causes more harm from its wasteful practices, but these types of practices have become accepted and justified because we rationalize wasting this “extra” money by calling it practicing “safe” or “cautious” medicine. However, there is absolutely no evidence that treating people this way does anything to improve health outcomes, advance quality of life, or lengthen life in any way. In fact, it actually does the opposite.

preventable-diseases

What is most unnerving is the fact that the vast majority of these poor heath outcomes are completely preventable. “…most of the chronic diseases that affect 160 million Americans and account for 78% of our healthcare costs are caused by lifestyle and environmental factors—namely our diet, sedentary lifestyle, smoking, chronic stress, and environmental toxins” (Hyman 2009). In truth, America does not have a good healthcare system, and the first step to fixing the problem is admitting that there is one.

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So what is the answer, and what scientific evidence do we have to support any alternatives? If we are not effective a treating disease, why not prevent it? If we can reduce the incidence of people developing new chronic diseases every year, we can effectively reduce and/or eliminate the burdens and costs of those diseases in the future.

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So what is prevention really? Our current healthcare model considers prevention as getting a vaccination to become “immune” to infectious disease; taking a statin drug to lower cholesterol levels (a health factor that has no scientific evidence as a cause for heart disease); getting an angioplasty (stent) or coronary artery bypass to prevent a heart attack; and/or performing mammograms, colonoscopies, and other screening tests. However, none of these practices do anything to actually improve immune system health, reduce the risk for heart attack and death, or even reduce the incidence of cancer or deaths from cancer (Hyman 2009). All they do is drive up the cost of healthcare. “…angioplasties and stents do not prolong life or even prevent heart attacks in stable patients (ie, 95% of those who receive them). Coronary bypass surgery prolongs life in less than 2% to 3% of patients who receive it” (Hyman 2009, Hochman 2006).

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If patients were truly informed and educated by their doctors and healthcare providers that over 90% of the time the drugs and surgeries they are being given are ineffective at best, the research shows that the vast majority of people would not get them (Trewby 2002). The surgeries and pharmaceutical drugs do not come without deadly side effects, and that is one of the reasons why our healthcare system kills so many people (Starfield 2000). What is worse is that because our treatments are not rooted in true prevention, our current medical treatments are doing nothing to help the next unsuspecting victims of chronic disease. If the focus of our healthcare system remains on treatment and pseudo-pharmaceutical/surgical/technological-prevention alone, our healthcare system will only continue to become more expensive and less effective.

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The problem also lies in the culture of healthcare workers themselves. Most people who get into the healthcare field do so because they believe they are providing a valuable service and genuinely want to help people; however, it is because of this attitude that healthcare providers often tend to overlook the negative sides of healthcare and the great harm that it is causing. Some drugs and surgeries may be effective in stabilizing a critical patient in the short-term, but if they are continued for the long-term, like we use them today, they only lead to poor health outcomes. As healthcare providers, we need to be brutally honest with ourselves, critically examine everything we do, and start asking the difficult questions that nobody has been willing to ask. It is our responsibility to stand up for what we know is best for our patients, even if it contradicts everything we have been trained, been taught, or led to believe. Sometimes all it takes is stopping and asking the question “Why?”. Why am I doing this? Why did the doctor prescribe this? Is there a safer and more effective way to do what we are doing? We cannot be afraid to question and fight the “standards” even in the face of harsh ridicule. Our patients deserve it because they trust us to give them the absolute best!

On another more positive note, let’s look at some alternatives to the current healthcare system that are genuinely rooted in real preventative practice that have actually proven to be successful. The concept of using diet to treat and prevent disease is not a new idea. In fact, it started way back with Hippocrates, the Father of Modern Medicine, when he famously said “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” However, our modern medical world has done little to heed this wise advice, and medical advancement today is solely focused on technological advancements in the drug and surgery industry. Fortunately, there are a few select medical doctors that are beginning to utilize the vast amount of scientific research supporting the use of these “low-tech” lifestyle interventions as medical treatment. The results are astounding, and the side effects are only positive.

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For example, if we focus only on our nation’s number one killer, heart disease, that kills over 600,000 people every year, diet and lifestyle treatments are 20-30 times more effective than drugs and surgery at not just preventing heart disease, but treating it (Pischke 2008, Ornish 1998). And if we extrapolate the findings that Dr. Esselystyn and his colleagues found from their study or the findings of the INTERHEART Health Study, over 90% of people with heart disease can either eliminate all future events and/or reverse their heart disease just by changing their diet alone, which is something that modern medicine has never been able to accomplish (Esselstyn 2014, Yusuf 2004). Diet and lifestyle are not only the most effective prevention methods that we have at our disposal to prevent future disease, but they are also the most effective treatment methods that we have to reduce symptoms, treat the underlying cause of disease, and improve long-term health outcomes.

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Furthermore, when looking at not just heart disease, but “all cause mortality,” diet is also the most effective way to prevent disease, disability, and early mortality. In the Adventist Health Study 2, researchers found that “vegetarian diets are associated with lower all-cause mortality and with some reductions in cause-specific mortality” (Orlich 2013). Diet by itself can be an extremely powerful way to prevent disease and early death.

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The change in our healthcare system needs to start with the way we educate our patients and the way that we train our healthcare providers, and our healthcare system needs to be utilized only in the areas that is most effective. If a person becomes acutely ill, suffers physical trauma (i.e. car accident, stabbing, etc.), or needs resuscitative care (i.e. cardiac arrest, rescue care, etc.), then allopathic medical treatments should absolutely be utilized to stabilize the person in short-term because these are the areas where they are most effective. However, for any other case of chronic disease, the focus needs to be on lifestyle medicine for treatment and widespread public health education on modifying risk factors to reduce the incidence of future health problems.

'I'm bored. Want to see whose medications have more side effects?'   'This prescription will be expensive to fill. You might want to try it's generic form...chicken soup.'

Overall, the ultimate goal in healthcare is to provide safe, effective, and compassionate care that encompasses the holistic needs (mind, body, and spirit) of the entire individual, their family, and their community. All of these factors are completely missing from our current allopathic medical model. However, if we allow our allopathic healthcare system to work in the areas that it is most effective at (trauma and rescue care), and allow public health and “alternative” medicine providers (i.e. nutritionists, exercise physiologists, psychologists, chiropractors, acupuncturists, etc.) to do what they do best (treat and prevent chronic degenerative disease), then our healthcare system will vastly improve. Prevention is the best way to improve health outcomes and reduce disease and disability risk, and considering the fact that our healthcare system is so lethal, it is truly ideal if we can avoid the system at all costs (Starfield 2000). In truth, an ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure because prevention is the most proven and effective way at virtually eliminating the risks of chronic disease now and in the future.

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References

Berwick, Donald M., and Hackbarth Andrew D. Eliminating Waste in US Health Care. JAMA, April 11, 2012—Vol 307, No. 14.

Esselstyn Jr, C. B., Gendy, G., Doyle, J., Golubic, M., & Roizen, M. F. (2014). A way to reverse CAD?. The Journal of family practice63(7), 356-364b.

Fisher, E. S., Wennberg, D. E., Stukel, T. A., Gottlieb, D. J., Lucas, F. L., & Pinder, E. L. (2003). The implications of regional variations in Medicare spending. Part 1: the content, quality, and accessibility of care. Annals of internal medicine138(4), 273-287.

Fisher, E. S., Wennberg, D. E., Stukel, T. A., Gottlieb, D. J., Lucas, F. L., & Pinder, E. L. (2003). The implications of regional variations in Medicare spending. Part 2: health outcomes and satisfaction with care. Annals of internal medicine138(4), 288-298.

Hochman, J. S., Lamas, G. A., Buller, C. E., Dzavik, V., Reynolds, H. R., Abramsky, S. J., … & Knatterud, G. L. (2006). Coronary intervention for persistent occlusion after myocardial infarction. New England Journal of Medicine355(23), 2395-2407.

Hyman, M. A., Ornish, D., & Roizen, M. (2009). Lifestyle medicine: treating the causes of disease. Alternative Therapies in Health & Medicine15(6), 12.

Morgan, G., Ward, R., & Barton, M. (2004). The contribution of cytotoxic chemotherapy to 5-year survival in adult malignancies. Clinical Oncology16(8), 549-560.

Moseley, J. B., O’Malley, K., Petersen, N. J., Menke, T. J., Brody, B. A., Kuykendall, D. H., … & Wray, N. P. (2002). A controlled trial of arthroscopic surgery for osteoarthritis of the knee. New England Journal of Medicine347(2), 81-88.

Murray, C. J., & Frenk, J. (2010). Ranking 37th—measuring the performance of the US health care system. New England Journal of Medicine362(2), 98-99.

Orlich, M. J., Singh, P. N., Sabaté, J., Jaceldo-Siegl, K., Fan, J., Knutsen, S., … & Fraser,

Ornish, D., Scherwitz, L. W., Billings, J. H., Gould, K. L., Merritt, T. A., Sparler, S., … & Brand, R. J. (1998). Intensive lifestyle changes for reversal of coronary heart disease. Jama280(23), 2001-2007.

Pereira, T. V., Horwitz, R. I., & Ioannidis, J. P. (2012). Empirical evaluation of very large treatment effects of medical interventions. JAMA308(16), 1676-1684.

Pischke, C. R., Scherwitz, L., Weidner, G., & Ornish, D. (2008). Long-term effects of lifestyle changes on well-being and cardiac variables among coronary heart disease patients. Health Psychology27(5), 584.

Starfield, B. (2000). Is US health really the best in the world?. JAMA284(4), 483-485.

The National Institute of Medicine (IOM). Transformation of Health System Needed to Improve Care and Reduce Costs. News Press Release. September 6, 2012.

Trewby, P. N., Reddy, A. V., Trewby, C. S., Ashton, V. J., Brennan, G., & Inglis, J. (2002). Are preventive drugs preventive enough? A study of patients’ expectation of benefit from preventive drugs. Clinical Medicine2(6), 527-533.

Yusuf, S., Hawken, S., Ôunpuu, S., Dans, T., Avezum, A., Lanas, F., … & INTERHEART Study Investigators. (2004). Effect of potentially modifiable risk factors associated with myocardial infarction in 52 countries (the INTERHEART study): case-control study. The Lancet364(9438), 937-952.

How Is Your Heart?

during my worst times

on the park benches
in the jails
or living with
whores
I always had this certain
contentment-
I wouldn’t call it
happiness-
it was more of an inner
balance
that settled for
whatever was occuring
and it helped in the
factories
and when relationships
went wrong
with the
girls.
it helped
through the
wars and the
hangovers
the backalley fights
the
hospitals.
to awaken in a cheap room
in a strange city and
pull up the shade-
this was the craziest kind of
contentment

and to walk across the floor
to an old dresser with a
cracked mirror-
see myself, ugly,
grinning at it all.
what matters most is
how well you
walk through the
fire.

charlesbukowski

SOMETIMES IT TAKES A COMEDIAN TO SPEAK THE REAL TRUTH…

“Drug companies are a lot like high school boyfriends. They’re much more concerned with getting inside you than being effective once they’re in there.”

Sadly, this is only funny because it’s true…
Did you know this about your MD and our healthcare industry? How does this clip make you feel about the MD-allopathic-pharmaceutical medicine we are forced to buy here in America?

IS YOUR SPIRITUAL LIFE REALLY THAT IMPORTANT?

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DID YOU KNOW THAT YOUR SPIRITUAL LIFE HAS A PRACTICAL PURPOSE??

Your spiritual life is the most powerful and effective outlet tool that you have to manage ALL of your day to day, moment to moment stress. If you aren’t nourishing your spirit and “giving up” your stress to your higher power, you aren’t healthy, and you aren’t whole.

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Science has proven and is continuing to prove in more powerful ways that people who have a strong spiritual life live longer, have less chronic disease, and have a more positive outlook on life.

Here’s a great video where cell microbiologist Dr. Bruce Lipton explains the science and value behind the reality of our spiritual life:

We must learn to use our spiritual life to manage our stress because our stress is the PRIMARY cause of ALL of our negative health outcomes, and the effects of stress are cumulative. If we don’t address our stress immediately when it shows up in our lives, it can easily overrun us. Don’t let stress rule in your life…”give it up”!!!

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How are YOU feeding your soul? How are you utilizing your spiritual life to manage your stress?

ARE YOU MINDFUL OF STRESS?

Most people are not aware of stress, and most people are not aware of how much they allow stress and worry to consume their lives. Much of this unawareness is due to a misunderstanding of what stress actually is.

What You See

Stress is not something anyone can bring into your life, and stress is not something that can be brought on by a life situation or life circumstance.

Perspective

Stress is nothing more than a perception of your mind. And YOU are the only one who can control your mind. Each and every second of your life is a choice, and you have the power to choose if you will allow stress and worry into your life.

This is where the spiritual concept of “put off” and “put on” comes in to play.

If I were to ask you, “What is your definition of sin?,” I guarantee most would probably say it’s “doing something wrong,” “harming others,” or “living with bad intentions.” However, the true Biblical definition of sin is any thought, belief, behavior, action, or perception that makes you experience and see yourself less than who you are in the finished work of Jesus.

Through Jesus, we have access to every single promise of God right now!  In God’s promises we are “saved” (Ephesians 2:8), “loved” (John 3:16), “prospered” (Philippians 4:19), “protected” (Daniel 6:16), “forgiven” (II Corinthians 4:19), “peaceful” (Philippians 4:7), “comforted” (II Corinthians 1:4), “victorious” (I Corinthians 15:57), and “free of stress/anxiety/worry” (Philippians 4:19, Romans 8:28) just to name a few (There are over 3,500 different promises of God in the Bible, and I highly encourage you to research them for yourself. It’s an amazing eye opening process that will allow you to see who God really is and what His heart is for you).

So, when you participate in any thought, belief, behavior, action, or perception that makes you see yourself less than any of those promises, you are living in sin. This includes stress, worry, and anxiety, and this is why it is so important to be mindful of the way you are thinking and perceiving yourself and the world around you.

Any time you notice yourself falling into the trap of any of these sins, follow these quick and simple steps:

“Put Off”

1. STOP.

2. Take notice of what you are doing and acknowledge it mentally or verbally (what the Bible calls “confess”).

3. Choose to give up the past regardless of your connection to it.

4. Choose to change your mind right then and there (what the Bible calls “repent”).

Once you have taken these steps, you now have the opportunity to “Put On.” And what do you put on? You put on the promises of God. Pick the promise of God that is most appropriate for your situation you are going through, and consciously choose to make that your reality at that very moment. Read more about it, meditate on it, and live it out. It’s not a “behavior modification” or some “change” that you have to mold into your life or “work on” to achieve “someday” down the road. It’s simply a conscious choice to see yourself in a different light (the Bible calls this process “transformation”), and you have access to this power each and every second of the day and it only takes several seconds to accomplish.

transformed

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.” -Romans 12:2

Live empowered, live inspired, live free, and live in the promises of God!

Gracefully yours,

Joshua Avritt

Happy AND Healthy Holidays… WHY NOT?

Many people are apprehensive about the holiday season, and for good reason.  For some, the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas has always meant eating as much unhealthy food as they want, joking about adding a few extra pounds to the waistline, and justifying it all by saying, “It’s ok because it’s the holidays!”  For most, the holidays will bring back memories of decadent meals; trays filled with candies, cookies, and homemade sweets; and piled high spreads of delicious—but not always healthy—food. This was no different for my family and me.  I used to pride myself on spending hours upon hours smoking the holiday turkey to perfection and spending days ahead of time marinating and seasoning the holiday roast with five star chef precision. I used to spend weeks making sugar-filled, butter-drenched holiday cookies and pies with my mother and grandmother, utilizing generation-old family recipes. Year after year, we celebrated these traditions, and family gatherings always centered on the best gourmet food, most of which was extremely unhealthy.

heart healthy family traditions  Thanksgiving-Dinner-200KB-1500x575

However, after my mother had her massive heart attack and our family all chose to transition to a whole-foods, plant-based diet, we knew our family food traditions needed to change. This meant finding different and healthier options for the recipes we had been cooking for years, and it meant substituting unhealthy meat and diary products for low-fat, plant-based versions. Surprisingly, after spending time recreating the recipes during that first year, we found that many of the recipes actually tasted better when we made them healthier, they were more fun to make because they were less processed, and we felt no guilt knowing that we could eat as much as we want while improving our health at the same time! Yes, at first it took some extra time and effort to rearrange the ingredients, read nutrition labels, and seek out the healthiest options available, but once we had it down, the process got easier and faster, and soon enough, we began wondering why we didn’t make these changes years ago!

 farmacy         fruit christmas tree

Oftentimes, it’s so easy to get caught up in the holiday food and preparations that we forget what the real reason is for celebrating the holidays—family. And what is a family if it isn’t healthy? My family was fortunate that we were given a second chance to change our health choices before it was too late for my mother. Not all families get that opportunity. The greatest gift of love you can give a loved one is the gift of health.

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The holidays are no longer a time of apprehension and guilt for my family because we banded together and chose to make a stand for each other’s health. My family’s health means the world to me, and I realize that by having healthy holiday traditions means that we will get to spend MANY more of them together! My hope is that you will do the same for yours…

Wishing you all the very happiest and healthiest of holidays!

Gracefully yours,

Joshua Avritt

P.S. Let me know if you would like for me to create a blog on some easy, healthy, and delicious ways to improve your holiday meals. 🙂