Monday, May 17, 2010
A Way to Ease into the Vaccine Topic
If you are reading this list for the first time do not get overwhelmed! Take a deep breath and remember: You do not have to follow the doctor’s schedule for vaccinating your baby. You are well within your rights to delay until you can make an informed choice. This is your child, and your child deserves a well-educated decision, which can only be achieved by viewing all sides of an issue and then choosing the path that is best for your child.
When you are done being introduced to the subject, how do you know when you have researched enough to make a decision? Many people in vaccine debate have researched for years and thousands of hours. That is not necessary to make a basic risk assessment for your own children. You just need to learn about the basics. You know you have learned a good amount when you can answer these questions:
1. What is the name of the disease and its common terms?
2. What is the description of the disease?
3. What is the length of time from initial infection to the end of all symptoms?
4. How long is the infectious period and how is it spread?
5. What are the normal symptoms of the disease?
6. What are the proven serious consequences of the disease?
7. What is the proportion of persons infected/developing serious consequences?
8. What is the transmission route of the disease?
9. What is the prevalence of the disease?
10. What are the allopathic and homeopathic treatments of the disease and what is the efficacy of those treatments?
11. Have you done relevant research about the disease?
12. What is the name of the vaccine?
13. What company makes the vaccine?
14. What are the listed contents of the vaccine?
15. What is the significance of whether or not the vaccine is live and is it?
16. What is history of the development of the vaccine?
17. What are the known side-effects of the vaccine and rate of incidence of those side-effects?
18. What are possible side-effects not yet acknowledged by the vaccine maker?
19. Have you done relevant research into the vaccine?
20. How effective is the vaccine at preventing the disease?
21.What is the vaccine meant to do? (Many vaccines are not meant to prevent infection or transmission).
22.What are the number of cases reported each year?
23.What are the number of deaths reported each year from the vaccine and the natural disease?
I am a third generation-vaccinated mom to an 18 month old daughter. No one in my extended family questioned vaccines until I came along. I suffered a severe reaction to my vaccines after experiencing smaller reactions each step of the way from 2 months onwards. My mom believed my doctor during the first reactions when he assured her that it was a coincidence and encouraged her to continue vaccinating me. That I am still here after my biggest reaction is a miracle, and it was also the starting point for my mom to begin researching. As I was suffering grand mal seizures one after another for a 48hr period, the doctor said it wasn’t the vaccines. She left to find her own answers. Her journey led her to find things she could not accept and because of that all of my siblings are vaccine free.
Below I have gathered a collection of links so that other parents can make an informed decision before vaccinating their children and not after, as my mom had to do. Too many times I have heard of parents who learned about vaccines AFTER their children suffered. Hindsight is 20/20 for them, and for many the information came too late.
Here is a thread for those who regret vaccinating their children before making an informed choice: http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=825816..
What’s in the Numbers
If you are new to this, the first place to begin is with the cold, hard numbers. Research the disease incidence, the death rates, the vaccine injury cases, etc.
Here is a graph showing the decline of common diseases and when vaccines were introduced to get you thinking:
Here is the CDC's reportable disease table. Click, then download the report to see up to date numbers:
If you download the issue it gives you the most recent statistic the CDC has on all reportable diseases, vaccine related or not, for the year. (These numbers will be towards the end of the document.) Understanding your child’s risk for all diseases and not just a vaccine related disease is important regardless of the vaccine debate.
Togive you an idea of the numbers:
Disease Cases for 2007 reported by the CDC:
Congenital rubella 0
Hib (under 5):
Sero b-17 (covered by the vaccine)
Non sero b-141 (not covered by the vaccine)
Unknown b-187 (not covered by vaccine)
Remember that the CDC report is a cumulative list.
To find out the reported number of deaths, visit the CDC’s website here and type in which disease you are interested in learning about:
If you haven't done much research and this is the first time you've poked around in these files you will be probably shocked. The general belief in our culture is that a vaccine-related illness will find and kill your child. But complications, including death, are rare anomalies not expected consequences. A healthy child contracting an illness is not going to die, or even potentially experience scary consequences. When deaths are researched, it is often found that the patient had an underlying illness, a chronic illness, did not seek medical treatment, was misdiagnosed or ultimately harmed by a secondary infection.
The importance of looking at the numbers is so that you can accurately assess your child’s risk of 1) becoming sick with the disease 2) risk of complications from the disease and 3) risk of death from the disease.
Numbers are important in risk assessment because they can help us to make decisions outside of emotional or cultural influence. Take, for example, carseat safety. Did you know that it is estimated over 80% of carseats in America are installed incorrectly? Your child has a 1000% chance of dying in a carseat driving to the grocery store. Yet many parents are much more worried about vaccine related diseases. Children are more likely to be fully vaccinated than to be buckled in according to the carseat’s instruction manual.
A commonly repeated myth is that a vaccine-free boy will catch mumps and become sterile. Did you know that the CDC admits there are not enough reported cases of sterility from mumps to form a statistic? Yet thousands of children die every year from improperly installed carseats.
Parents, we are trying to make a risk assessment about the safety of our children on various issues. It’s hard to do, especially with so many conflicting messages and cultural myths. Look to the numbers. Look to the science. Statistically, parents should be concerned about their child’s safety in a carseat where thousands of kids die or are injured. But instead we are taught to fear vaccine related diseases, which cause the least amount of deaths in the developed world out of all causes including drownings, accidents, SIDs, etc.
The last thing to consider in the hard numbers category is how many vaccine related diseases are spread by vaccine free citizens. It is a common myth to assume that vaccine related diseases are caused by those who don’t vaccinate. When researching the incidence reports, take a look at who is vaccinated and who is not. You will be quite surprised.
It is said that Polio has been eradicated in the Western hemisphere and Western Europe. This occurred coincidentally with the removal of DDT as a crop spray. It occurred in America and in Europe during the same time, despite only America having a vaccine campaign. Cases of paralytic polios since the 70s have been caused only by the vaccine. According to the World Health Organisation, the last case of Paralytic Polio was reported more than 25 years ago:
Although it should be noted that the Oral Vaccine (which the CDC removed in the early 2000s) caused a case in 2005:
As of 2006 there were around 1700 cases of it worldwide in areas where DDT is still used as a crop spray and the Oral Polio Vaccine is used instead of the IPV. If you go to this link you will get the current numbers:
But what really happened? If we look at other parts of history, we see a different story:
Here are the figures for vaccine injury reports kept by US Department of Health. Here is a link with some context. It contains a link to the actual figures:
Vaccine Related Injury and Death
Now that you have spent some time learning about the diseases and the risk of contracting them, being injured by them or dying from them, here are some links for learning about vaccines and their risks. Remember that I am providing a basic introduction to this issue. Therefore, I have tried to stay away from clinical studies and raw data. Once you learn more about the issue you can dig into the dry stuff as much as you want. The point is not to dwell on the emotions, but to learn about a new subject and a new perspective.
This website: http://www.insidevaccines.com/ is a good place to start because they are very thorough in their research and breakdown raw data, studies and other information in small, easy to digest bits with links to the original study or organization. You can choose a vaccine or a disease from their menu and find information from pro vaccine and anti vaccine sources.
The Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) is a national vaccine website that the U.S. government established after giving full legal "immunity" to vaccine companies from being sued or held accountable for injuries and death from vaccinations:
An easier tool to use that searches the VAERS database is at: http://www.medalerts.org/.
Keep this page handy while you review vaccine ingredients and reactions. This is the official CDC schedule for infants/children up to age 7:
If you go to this link you will find stories about vaccine reactions:
Ian's Voice, a site established by his parents after his death, seeks to encourage parents to become informed on this topc:
Vaccine ingredients are the point of enlightenment for most people. The simplest way to determine what is in a vaccine, how much and why it is in there is to view the vaccine product insert. The insert is put together by the manufacturer and included with every vaccine.
Remember: you have the right to read the vaccine insert BEFORE your child receives any vaccines. You have the right to demand to see the insert. You have the right to refuse to vaccinate until you can read the insert. You have the right to find a new doctor if your current doctor refuses to let you read the inserts.
Please note: the vaccine insert is an official, little paper, often folded up and included in the same box as the vaccine. This should NOT be confused with the ‘safety data sheets’ or ‘safety brochures’ that companies distribute to doctors. Get the legal, real data from the actual inserts and not the propaganda.
To view the insert, click on the brand name and the product insert will open up. The ingredients are usually listed at the beginning of each insert: http://www.vaccinesafety.edu/thi-table.htm.
Here is another site for each insert:
Here is the CDC's ingredient list divided by vaccine:
This article provides a history on the use of aborted human cells in vaccines:
Here are some other sites on ingredients:
Here is Sheri Nakken's site:
This organization is not for vaccine study, but this is an institute that is passionately working on autism and helping parents. They released the report last year about the epidemic proportion of autism in California. The man who started this organization has a son who developed autism after the MMR. He has been very open about this: http://mindinstitute.ucdmc.ucdavis.edu/
Federal and State Regulation
This thread was started to help parents find their State Government websites and learn about how many reported diseases there were in their area. Unfortunately, the nature of state governments is to change their websites frequently so some of the links within this thread may be broken. It is still worth looking into as you can then find keywords to plug into a search engine:
Click on your state to view the laws and available exemptions:
Here is an example of an exemption document you can give to your doctor’s office if they want you to sign something for delaying or stopping vaccination:
Reasons for children to remain vaccine free:
What is it like to have an intact immune system?
Did the CDC know Mercury was harmful in vaccines?
There was a transcript indicating that the CDC recognized the danger of the continued use of Thimerosal in vaccines, even through their own study showed a correlation. They never released the "Generation Zero" study, but instead manipulated their own data. The transcript of the closed-door secret meeting convened by the CDC in 2000, in Simpsonwood, Georgia AFTER the AAP recommended the removal of Thimerosal from (childhood) vaccines. That link is no longer on the CDC site. If you go here you can learn more about what happened:
Timeline of Thimerosal Controversy
Thimerosal is still present in some vaccines in trace amounts. Because they are reported as trace amounts, the FDA does not require an exact amount to be listed and does not regulate it. So who is to say how much is still in a vaccine?
What replaced Mercury?
This study found: "Aluminum hydroxide injections lead to motor deficits and motor
Besides Mercury, why keep your child's immune system intact?
Can you stop vaccinating part way through? Yes! Mothers share their experiences:
Here are several resources for getting your feet wet:
Books to Read
The Vaccine Guide: Making an Informed Choice by Randall Neustaedter
The Immunization Decision by Randall Neustaedter
How to Raise a Healthy Child in Spite of Your Doctor by Dr. Robert S. Mendelsohn
Confessions of a Medical Heretic by Dr. Robert S. Mendelsohn
Just a Little Prick by Peter and Hilary Butler
A Shot in the Dark: Why the P in the Dpt Vaccination May Be Hazardous to Your Child's Health by Harris L. Coulter, Barbara Loe Fisher
Vaccines: Are They Really Safe and Effective by Neil Z. Miller, et al
What Every Parent Should know about Childhood Immunization by Jamie Murphy
The Immunization Resource Guide : Where to Find Answers to All Your Questions about Childhood Vaccinations by Diane Rozario
What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Children's Vaccinations by Stephanie Cave, Deborah Mitchell (Contributor)
Vaccinations: A Thoughtful Parent's Guide: How to Make Safe, Sensible Decisions about the Risks, Benefits, and Alternatives by Aviva Jill Romm
The Sanctity of Human Blood: Vaccination Is Not Immunization - Sixth Edition - 2003 -- Tim O'Shea; Paperback
Other Points of Interest:
Medical citations that Breastfeeding reduces Hib risk:
Here parents share their most influential links and books:
This site shows the schedule for different countries:
Here is a Canadian link:
And finally, this really should be stated over and over again….
NO ONE HAS TO FOLLOW ANY RULES FOR VACCINATING. VACCINES ARE NOT YET MANDATORY IN AMERICA. YOU DON’T HAVE TO FOLLOW THE DOCTOR’S SCHEDULE. YOU CAN MAKE YOUR OWN. YOU CAN STOP VACCINATING. YOU CAN PARTIALLY VACCINATE. YOU CAN DELAY VACCINATING.
IF YOU WANT TO DELAY VACCINATING UNTIL YOU’VE DONE YOUR RESEARCH AND YOU FEEL CONFIDENT ABOUT THAT DECISION THEN THAT IS WHAT YOU SHOULD DO. DELAY UNTIL YOU ARE SURE OF WHAT YOU ARE DOING. AND NOT ONE MINUTE BEFORE. REMEMBER IT IS YOUR CHILD. NOT YOUR DOCTOR’S.
“I’d rather treat a sick child then injure a healthy one.”
“You can change your mind and vaccinate, but you can’t unvaccinate if you change your mind.”