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Old 05-17-2009, 02:00 PM   #1
Tiki
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Vaccination & epidemic

With the withdrawal of 10 of the 13 original supporters from the original Lancet paper that kicked off the anti-vaccination craze (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9500320) and the revelation that Andrew Wakefield falsified his results linking vaccination to autism, it would seem as if the anti-vaccination lunatics (http://www.generationrescue.org/) would back off at least a little on their dangerous allegations that vaccines harm more than they save. Instead, it seems as if they've redoubled their efforts.

In discussing the vaccination issue with people who have chosen not to vaccinate their children, I find that a typical reaction to my pro-vaccination opinion is to assume that I simply haven't read enough. Naturally, given my specific interests in the fields of biochemistry and epidemiology, the opposite is true; if anything, I've read too much. I have watched my children, worried, after each vaccination, and breathed a sigh of relief when none of the many well-documented complications arose. None of those well-documented complications happen to be long-term mental deficiency or autism, but that's not stopping the anti-vaccination ignorant from promoting their potentially disastrous propaganda, nor is it stopping the resurgence of formerly eradicated and dangerous diseases like mumps, measles, and rubella. Even tuburculosis and the horrible crippling disease of polio, formerly considered extinct, is on the rise.

Why, in this day of new and increasingly dangerous epidemics such as AIDS and SARS, are we allowing idiots to disarm our bottom-line defenses against diseases we defeated decades ago? This is sheer insanity.
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Old 05-17-2009, 03:03 PM   #2
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A.) There was not a "revelation" that Dr. Wakefield falsified his results--there was a single accusation that he had done so, and he is currently suing said accuser.

B.) If you actually look at the original study, it was in no way intended to demonize vaccines in and of themselves.

Quote:
INTERPRETATION: We identified associated gastrointestinal disease and developmental regression in a group of previously normal children, which was generally associated in time with possible environmental triggers.
The digestive disorders were correlated with the autism symptoms, and the MMR vaccine (specifically the live measles part of it) may or may not have contributed to worsening the underlying digestive disorders. No one has ever implicated the polio vaccine in anything, and people who go whole-hog and choose not to get it are overzealous. The reality is, vaccinating and not vaccinating both have side effects. It is a little unfair to expect the parents of a child who has been harmed by a vaccine to rationally accept that it is better that their own child be harmed rather than some other child dying of the disease. There's no comparison. Either it's your child or it's not, and if it is your child, everything changes.
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Old 05-17-2009, 04:51 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Clodfobble View Post
A.) There was not a "revelation" that Dr. Wakefield falsified his results--there was a single accusation that he had done so, and he is currently suing said accuser.

B.) If you actually look at the original study, it was in no way intended to demonize vaccines in and of themselves.
A) According to an investigation by the Times, the allegations look to be confirmable: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/lif...cle5683671.ece

B) I said "the original Lancet paper that kicked off the anti-vaccination craze", not "the original Lancet paper that was intended to demonize vaccines". Either way, the vast majority of the researchers involved have withdrawn support from the paper, and I think that bears strong consideration.

The rest of your post contains interesting observations similar to those I alluded to in my own post.
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Old 05-17-2009, 06:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
A) According to an investigation by the Times, the allegations look to be confirmable: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/lif...cle5683671.ece
Brian Deer, the Times reporter is the SOURCE of the allegations ffs... sorry I don't trust him to accurately investigate the bullshit he made up in the first place.


Quote:
B) I said "the original Lancet paper that kicked off the anti-vaccination craze"
[/quote]

Also incorrect. The anti-vaccination craze had been around for a long, long time prior to Wakefield's paper. There has been vaccine controversy for as long as there have been vaccines. Have you not heard of the swine flu/Guillian Barre, DTP vs. DTaP, thimerosal fiascos etc.? Yeah - it's the people that bitch about the unsafe vaccines that get that made safer - for those who choose to use them.
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Old 05-17-2009, 05:54 PM   #5
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Except we do not agree on this part:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiki
None of those well-documented complications happen to be long-term mental deficiency or autism,
unless you are hinging your statementon the fact that it is "undocumented" by large, double-blind controlled studies. There are scores of studies showing that measles causes digestive damage, and an exponentially-growing body of evidence that digestive disorders can result in autistic symptoms. It's not hard to make the connection between the two. Like any extremists, the total anti-vaccine people could be less widespread if only the medical community would honestly examine the issue and admit that there are significant risks to vaccination, though they may still be less than the risk of an unvaccinated population. By railing against them and calling them "ignorant" or "idiots," you only strengthen their position with moderates who have doubts that vaccines are "totally safe," as most doctors still gamely insist.

Regarding the Wakefield study:

Quote:
However, our investigation, confirmed by evidence presented to the General Medical Council (GMC), reveals that: In most of the 12 cases, the children’s ailments as described in The Lancet were different from their hospital and GP records. Although the research paper claimed that problems came on within days of the jab, in only one case did medical records suggest this was true, and in many of the cases medical concerns had been raised before the children were vaccinated. Hospital pathologists, looking for inflammatory bowel disease, reported in the majority of cases that the gut was normal. This was then reviewed and the Lancet paper showed them as abnormal.
My son's pediatrician told me that she had "absolutely no concerns about autism" less than a week before he was diagnosed by a trained professional. Pardon my jaded cynicism, but GPs don't know squat, and the vast majority of parents of autistic children realize this very quickly, and stop bothering with normal pediatricians altogether. My son's GP records don't show 90% of his symptoms, despite the fact that I'd been reporting them for months, because the doctor didn't consider them noteworthy. I know this, because I requested all his medical records as part of his treatment. And again, the fact that symptoms of autism were noted before the MMR shot does not mean the MMR shot did not worsen them. Thirdly, my son's gastroenterologist reported that his gut was "normal," i.e. he did not have celiac disease. This, despite a lifetime of chronic diarrhea. It would seem the only "evidence" that things were falsified is that he found ailments no one else had identified.
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Old 05-18-2009, 09:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clodfobble View Post
Like any extremists, the total anti-vaccine people could be less widespread if only the medical community would honestly examine the issue and admit that there are significant risks to vaccination, though they may still be less than the risk of an unvaccinated population.
I agree that this is proper action but do you think that an honest examination would have such a great affect since scientific journals and media are not heavily read by the general public?

Most people read articles from journalists who have an agenda. Sadly, if the medical community did do this honest examination, the journalistic reporting probably won't at the same level, especially if extremists are the only ones giving input to this issue.
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Old 05-17-2009, 07:13 PM   #7
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You didn't click on the links, did you?
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Old 05-17-2009, 07:17 PM   #8
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How else would I know it was a Brian Deer article? But no, I didn't click on the "anti-vaccination lunatics" link because, well, duh.
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Old 05-17-2009, 08:51 PM   #9
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I didn't need to click on it, because I've already been there before. Large portions of that site are dedicated to treating and curing existing autism cases, in which they believe vaccines are only a part of the equation. But like I said, you keep bringing people over to your side by belittling groups who have a more moderate view than you'd like to believe they do. Let me know how that works out for you.

Since I'm sure you've read your own link, I'd be interested in what you think about their large-scale study involving rates of neurological disorders among vaccinated and non-vaccinated children. Do you think they faked the data? Do you think there's something else that explains the correlation?
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Old 05-17-2009, 11:27 PM   #10
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Interviews were successfully completed in 11,817 households with one or more children age 4 to 17. From those 11,817 households, data on 17,674 children was gathered. Of the 17,674 children inventoried, 991 were described as being completely unvaccinated. For each unvaccinated child, a health battery was administered.
Reading this I wonder why those 991 children weren't vaccinated? I was under the impression they had to be vaccinated to attend school. If that's true then they must be home schooled, and I wonder what other differences there are in family lifestyle?
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Old 05-18-2009, 10:10 AM   #11
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Reading this I wonder why those 991 children weren't vaccinated? I was under the impression they had to be vaccinated to attend school. If that's true then they must be home schooled, and I wonder what other differences there are in family lifestyle?
There are exemption options for every kid in every state. Home schoolers have the same vaccination requirements as any other kid.
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Old 05-17-2009, 11:37 PM   #12
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They say you have to be vaccinated to attend school, but usually you just have to jump through a dozen hoops and go through a bunch of bureaucratic red tape to file for an official exemption. Each state is different, and I don't know what the specific rules are in California and Oregon, where this study was done--but this is the information form for Texas, for example.
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Old 05-18-2009, 10:29 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by piercehawkeye45
I agree that this is proper action but do you think that an honest examination would have such a great affect since scientific journals and media are not heavily read by the general public?
Yes, because I also think an honest examination would force them to conclude that the current vaccination schedule is too aggressive, and that certain specific vaccinations carry extra risks and should be performed with even more caution; and in the long term view, I think it would also open the research path of trying to identify those kids who are genetically at risk. The PR danger is that they have to be sure to do this all in one fell swoop, because as soon as they actually admit there's a problem, vaccination rates are going to plummet until they can convince everyone they've got it figured out again. The best way to do it would be the same way they removed Thimerosal: "Okay, okay, look, we know there's absolutely no risk, but fine, if you insist, we'll take it out. Happy now?"
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Old 05-18-2009, 02:05 PM   #14
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I don't have anything further to add to this discussion because I can't intelligently discuss any topic with people who refuse to do any additional reading because they think they already know all the available material, have made up their minds, closed them, and thrown away the key.

"There is no need for me to click on the links or read the studies, or the withdrawals, because I already know everything".

I heartily recommend reading actual medical studies and not third-party interpretations of those studies wherever possible, because when you read the interpretations you're absorbing someone else's opinion, not forming your own.
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Old 05-18-2009, 02:06 PM   #15
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Nice troll.
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