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Why has no unvaxed vs. Fully vaxed study been done???

post #1 of 44
Thread Starter 
I would love to see this issue settled. I believe that the current vaccine schedule is INSANE! I think parents who have not vaccinated their children would love to see a study done. HAs one ever been done? Is one planned???
post #2 of 44
For one thing, it would be very difficult to assemble a large enough sample of unvaccinated kids to produce results with any meaningful statistical power. How would you design such a study to be anything but a fishing expedition? What is to be tested for?
post #3 of 44
Really? I don't think it'd be hard. For one, there's a whole medical group here in Chicago which doesn't vaccinate (HomeFirst). Just compare that medical group to a standard pediatrician's office. It wouldn't be hard.

You're looking for any statistical differences. Fishing? Yeah. If there are any statistical differences follow up on a more concentrated study on that difference.

I think no one does it, because no one will fund it. There's no money in it.
post #4 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xerxella View Post

I think no one does it, because no one will fund it. There's no money in it.
I disagree. There's money in it, for both sides. Many anti-vax groups could easily afford to fund such a study, and it certainly wouldn't be a financial strain on pharmaceutical companies. And they'd both have something to gain from it if the results turned out the way they wanted. For pharm companies it would increase consumer confidence in their products, thereby leading to more sales of vaccines. For anti-vax organizations it would increase consumer confidence in them, leading people to be more likely to buy their products and treatments.

So yeah, I also wonder why such a study hasn't been done.
post #5 of 44
I think it has to do with the "I'm an intelligent, responsible doctor/scientist/researcher, not a crazy internet conspiracy theorist" feeling among those who push vaccines. While there may be large unvaxed populations out there to compare with the vaxed group, it would be impossible (with current medical and political vaccination pressure) to design and implement a double blind study, which is one of the best types of studies with (supposedly) some of the most reliable results. (A double blind study would randomly assign vax or no vax to individual parents/children, and neither the doctors nor patients would know who had been assigned to what group.) So, if anti-vax groups performed a "low-quality" study, the medical community would dismiss its results as not valid.

If pro-vax/medical folks caried out this "low-quality" study, and its data supported not vax'ing, what then? More studies would have to be performed, but they would need them to be "better quality," which would necessitate double blinding, which would be "unethical." Not to mention that even to design/fund such a study would be akin to admitting that there may be problems with vaccination. No one in the pro-vax camp wants to open that can of worms.

Even with such a study, it would be difficult to "prove" anything either way. What would the study be measuring? How would you determine whether any vaccine-related problems/risks the study may bring to light outweigh the "benefits" of vaccination over the last several decades? We can't now accurately measure how much vaccination can actually be attributed historically to disease decline, although the popular view is that they have been essential in this role. If the study showed that vaccines are in fact detrimental to some fraction (or all) of the population, pro-vaxers would marginalize these results in favor of the greater good that vaccines have supposedly done.

Also, vaccination/disease risk in the US isn't the same as vaccination/disease risk in South Africa, for instance. Assuming a satisfactory study could be done in the US with clear results showing the problems/risks of vaccination for American children, where does that leave the rest of the world? It would open up ethical questions and issues in all sorts of areas, from WHO recommendations to charitable and government agencies who provide free or low-cost vaccinations to the poorest children in Africa. Would they continue? How would we quantify the risks to those children from vaccination in light of the risks they face from contaminated water, insufficient food, endemic disease, etc?

Then of course I also believe that there is a certain element of pride among doctors, medical organizations, the CDC, WHO, etc that prevents them from even seeking any further for answers. What if they have been wrong all these years? Their credibility would crumble. And while I am certainly no proponent of most of these groups in general, I do believe there are very good things that some of them do, in some areas. If the emperor has no clothes in this instance, what impact would it have on the health and well-being of certain people in other arenas (for example, maternal and infant health, breastfeeding, etc)?

I agree that such a study would be interesting. There are just so many other questions and disincentives for either camp to go there.
post #6 of 44
Completely agree with Pirogi. And there have been efforts to fund such studies, but it always was shot down. The manufacturers have no interest in such studies, absolutely not. It might prove that their products are not great, and they wouldn't want that. Even if it showed to just cause something slightly bad it would be detrimental to them and the whole medical industry.
There were comparisons in the Netherlands. I can't find it right now, but there are large pockets of unvaccinated children in Holland and they were compared to a similar group of vaccinated children, and the unvaxxed did better.
Here is another list of small studies:
http://imcv.info/vaccination/article...-children.html

A big study could never be double blind, but there are enough unvaccinated children for a meaningful sample. Here and in Europe. Even moreso in Europe. Back home we don't have mandatory vaccines so there are more people who don't vaccinate since they know it is a personal medical choice and no nanny-state-health-mandate (at least in Switzerland and Germany, I know France, Belgium and Slovakia mandate some, gag). I still can't believe that the "land of the free" is so dictatorial about vaccines! It's absurd.
post #7 of 44
There was just a study done on macac (sorry, don't know the proper spelling) monkey babies. Vaccinated with the full schedule and not vaccinated at all. I'll try to find the link. It's quite interesting. I know Dan Olmstead had something about it on his page. The powers-that-be did NOT want the study done at all. That should tell us something...
post #8 of 44
Thread Starter 

Would it be that hard to conduct a study

????
If 100 unvaxed were available,which they are, I'm certain something could be learned. WhAt is the autism rate (allergy, asthma etc) among unvaxed
post #9 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pirogi View Post
While there may be large unvaxed populations out there to compare with the vaxed group, it would be impossible (with current medical and political vaccination pressure) to design and implement a double blind study, which is one of the best types of studies with (supposedly) some of the most reliable results.
I think it's considered unethical to do that. It wouldn't be allowed. You're not allowed to deny proven life-saving treatment (which is what the medical community considers vaccines) to a patient, even if it's for a study. They'd see it as harming the patient by not giving them the vaccine, so a clinical study like that could not be allowed.
Quote:
(A double blind study would randomly assign vax or no vax to individual parents/children, and neither the doctors nor patients would know who had been assigned to what group.) So, if anti-vax groups performed a "low-quality" study, the medical community would dismiss its results as not valid.
I disagree. What could be done is an epidemiological study. The medical community does not look down on those at all. In fact, epidemiological studies are usually conducted before clinical studies, because it's usually the epidemiological study that identifies a problem. It could be done by either side.

Quote:
If pro-vax/medical folks caried out this "low-quality" study, and its data supported not vax'ing, what then? More studies would have to be performed, but they would need them to be "better quality," which would necessitate double blinding, which would be "unethical." Not to mention that even to design/fund such a study would be akin to admitting that there may be problems with vaccination. No one in the pro-vax camp wants to open that can of worms.
If an epidemiological study identified vaccines as creating an endemic problem, it could be studied clinically. Because then the safety and benefit of the vaccine would be called into question, which would negate the "doing no harm" aspect. And given all of the medicines and vaccines that have been studied and subsequently taken off the market, it doesn't seem like the medical community has shown reticence to investigate.

Even with such a study, it would be difficult to "prove" anything either way. What would the study be measuring? How would you determine whether any vaccine-related problems/risks the study may bring to light outweigh the "benefits" of vaccination over the last several decades? We can't now accurately measure how much vaccination can actually be attributed historically to disease decline, although the popular view is that they have been essential in this role. If the study showed that vaccines are in fact detrimental to some fraction (or all) of the population, pro-vaxers would marginalize these results in favor of the greater good that vaccines have supposedly done.

Quote:
Also, vaccination/disease risk in the US isn't the same as vaccination/disease risk in South Africa, for instance. Assuming a satisfactory study could be done in the US with clear results showing the problems/risks of vaccination for American children, where does that leave the rest of the world? It would open up ethical questions and issues in all sorts of areas, from WHO recommendations to charitable and government agencies who provide free or low-cost vaccinations to the poorest children in Africa. Would they continue? How would we quantify the risks to those children from vaccination in light of the risks they face from contaminated water, insufficient food, endemic disease, etc?

Then of course I also believe that there is a certain element of pride among doctors, medical organizations, the CDC, WHO, etc that prevents them from even seeking any further for answers. What if they have been wrong all these years? Their credibility would crumble. And while I am certainly no proponent of most of these groups in general, I do believe there are very good things that some of them do, in some areas. If the emperor has no clothes in this instance, what impact would it have on the health and well-being of certain people in other arenas (for example, maternal and infant health, breastfeeding, etc)?
Good points.

Quote:
I agree that such a study would be interesting. There are just so many other questions and disincentives for either camp to go there.
Like I said in a previous post, I just see such huge incentives for both sides. It makes me wonder why it hasn't been done.
post #10 of 44
To do such a study, you would need a very large pool of unvaxed people who were living in the same area, such that they was no "herd immunity". Otherwise, the conclusion that the unvaxed didn't get any diseases for which there were vaccinations could be simply based on the fact that everyone around them was vaccinated.

I think it would be hard to find such a community. Maybe the Amish? Waldorf or other alternative schools? But these communities are not that big.
post #11 of 44
Because, in order for it to be considered a reliable study, it has to be placebo-controlled, double-blind. That is the gold-standard in research.

So basically they have to randomly assign people to a group, one group gets fully vaccinated and one group gets only placebos. Neither group knows who they are, the drs don't know which group their patients are in. The parents get no say in what group they're in. Both groups still get the same number of injections, but one is only saline. So basically an entire dr's office will be shipped only saline injections, packaged plainly (saying "Study XYZ, DTaP"), and the dr will inject his patients with it, thinking that they are giving them DTaP. The other dr's office will have similar shipments (saying "Study XYZ, DTaP") and will inject his patients with it, thinking again that they are giving them DTaP. Then, a third party (hence the double-blind part) will conduct the research on the overall health of both groups at yearly intervals (or some other pre-arranged timeframe), comparing things such as how often they were sick, what VPDs they contracted if any, what long-term issues developed, if any, etc.

A retroactive study could be done that reviews records to compare outcomes to groups that are fully vaccinated vs not vaccinated, but that introduces a whole bunch more variables. Are the unvaxed kids really unvaxed? Or maybe they got vaxes at a health dept and not the ped? Why are they unvaxed? Is there some sort of medical reason that isn't dictated properly in the charts? Or is it because the parents come from a family with risk factors (high asthma/allergy/autoimmune) so those kids might skew the numbers by having some of those hereditary conditions despite being unvaxed.

Do you see how a retroactive study could be difficult? That's why the standard in research is double-blind, placebo controlled. And that isn't ethically possible.
post #12 of 44
I have seen where Amish populations were compared with general populations. There are no nut allergies in Amish communities. I am unsure if they even have much for Autism, yet, they are not dying off of Tetanus (despite all the farm work and barn raising they are doing) or Polio or otherwise.
post #13 of 44
To mine data from a self-selected group (those that have chosen not to vax) to have usable data at all you would have to correct for as many variables as possible (lifestyle, socioeconomic factors, diet, other health care choices, etc)

-Angela
post #14 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by heathergirl67 View Post
I disagree. There's money in it, for both sides. Many anti-vax groups could easily afford to fund such a study, and it certainly wouldn't be a financial strain on pharmaceutical companies.
I would be soooo curious to know which anti-vax groups have the money to fund this.

I know Generation Rescue did a phone survey at one time, but I didn't think this type of study fit the bill within the research world.


I don't think 501c3 organizations that are not universities or think tanks fund that level of study, right? Aren't most studies financed by corporate grants given to universities or government agencies?

There was a bill introduced for the government to find this study, but it hasn't passed yet.
post #15 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by RomanGoddess View Post
To do such a study, you would need a very large pool of unvaxed people who were living in the same area, such that they was no "herd immunity". Otherwise, the conclusion that the unvaxed didn't get any diseases for which there were vaccinations could be simply based on the fact that everyone around them was vaccinated.

I think it would be hard to find such a community. Maybe the Amish? Waldorf or other alternative schools? But these communities are not that big.
But the point of the study is not to prove the efficacy of vaccines based on reported cases of illness.

I think the point is a comparative study of the two groups and the rate of occurrence of various condition: asthma, allergies, autism, diabetes, arthritis, etc.
post #16 of 44
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_dZe...layer_embedded

Research is on the way, from an anti-vaccine group NVIC. She mentions various things this research fund will do (data collection systems, small studies, and a 10 year clinical study) that this research fund may cover.
post #17 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2boyzmama View Post
Because, in order for it to be considered a reliable study, it has to be placebo-controlled, double-blind. That is the gold-standard in research.
The pro-vax science community does not agree with this. None of their studies "showing" vaccines don't cause autism are placebo-controlled, double blind studies.

Yes, that's the gold standard, but it is not even close to the only type of valid study possible. Yes, there would be a lot of variables. So naturally, the scientists who conduct retrospective studies need to be very smart (and ethical) to conduct a good study. But a good study is very much possible.

And if they leave the Amish out of it, and study the thousands of patients at Homefirst in Chicago, as well as random people like me who don't vaccinate, they don't have to account for any special genes.
post #18 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by heathergirl67 View Post
Many anti-vax groups could easily afford to fund such a study, and it certainly wouldn't be a financial strain on pharmaceutical companies. And they'd both have something to gain from it if the results turned out the way they wanted. For pharm companies it would increase consumer confidence in their products, thereby leading to more sales of vaccines. For anti-vax organizations it would increase consumer confidence in them, leading people to be more likely to buy their products and treatments.

So yeah, I also wonder why such a study hasn't been done.
I don't know of any anti-vax organization that could easily afford such a study, but NVIC is working on one, and they are currently fundraising for the study.

Pharm companies have A LOT to lose, obviously, by doing such a study. What if the results were not in their favor, which is very likely? They also would have very little to gain, as the vast majority of Americans already vaccinate, and government policies are already on their side.

As for this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by heathergirl67 View Post
For anti-vax organizations it would increase consumer confidence in them, leading people to be more likely to buy their products and treatments.
What in the world are you talking about?
post #19 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by xmasbaby7 View Post
I would be soooo curious to know which anti-vax groups have the money to fund this.

I know Generation Rescue did a phone survey at one time, but I didn't think this type of study fit the bill within the research world.


I don't think 501c3 organizations that are not universities or think tanks fund that level of study, right? Aren't most studies financed by corporate grants given to universities or government agencies?

There was a bill introduced for the government to find this study, but it hasn't passed yet.
I'm not really sure how much a study like this would cost, really? But I know that, for example, Generation Rescue paid $100,000 to put an ad in the NYT. So it seems like they'd have the money- or at least be able to get ahold of it- for something much more important.
post #20 of 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by ma2two View Post
As for this:

For anti-vax organizations it would increase consumer confidence in them, leading people to be more likely to buy their products and treatments.

What in the world are you talking about?
What part of that statement are you having a hard time understanding?
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