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more on thimerosal - Page 2

post #21 of 126
Yes mgHg = milligrams of mercury
post #22 of 126
The amount of thimerosal in PolyPred eyedrops was enough to cause a 2-week reaction for me.

The amount of thimerosal in a single flu shot was enough to cause a simliarly severe reaction--twice.

Receiving 4 shots, 3 of which were preserved with thimerosal, was enough to trigger 2 separate autoimmune disorders for me.

I had no underlying health conditions for any of those vacciations. I was healthy, well-nourished, and in excellent physical shape at the time of vaccination.

My children's reactions to vaccines were WORSE than mine.

These reactions happened with vaccines that contained thimerosal--and also with vaccines that contained aluminum.

You can put up all the studies you want, supposedly showing that thimerosal is safe, or that the amount used is safe.

I could find 1000 heavy smokers who are cancer-free, and claim that tobacco doesn't cause health problems, even though I know it's not true.

I continue to find it both amazing and disturbing, that people keep posting how safe thimerosal is. The independent studies make it clear that it iis extremely damaging. In addition, I have posted my own experiences--as well as the fact that my own experiences are not unique.

I'm afraid that, like me, the vast majority of mothers who vaccinate will not realize how common the serious reactions are until their child has one--and even then, like me, they might not get it until it's too late.

I started out believing that vaccines were safe, and that my doctor wouldn't recommend them unless he was sure that a serious reaction was not going to happen.

How very wrong I was.
post #23 of 126

Interesting...I was severely allergic to Walgreens brand contact solution in the early 90s.  The eye doctor said it was because of the thimerasol.  My eyes swelled up.  I forgot contact solution used to contain it.

post #24 of 126
Thread Starter 

There seems to be this idea floating around that "the dose makes the poison".  To be specific, thimerosal is present in tiny amounts, so we do not need to worry about it.

 

I am not sure it is that simple.  

 

Here is an article that explores the pros and cons to the issue of "the dose makes the poison"

http://www.actionbioscience.org/environment/trautmann.html

 

On the cons side we have two points that cause me to question "the dose is in the poison"

 

-there is variety among species and there is variety in sensitivity among single species.  Fetuses and infants are more sensitive to certain toxins - yet we do not always know the safety level of how toxins relate to fetuses and infants.

 

-not all chemicals are created equal.  Some are toxic even in tiny doses.

 

 

Of course, the question is whether thimerosal is dangerous to pregnant women and their fetuses.  My opinion: the body of evidence seems to suggest caution wrt to thimerosal and pregnancy.  Given that non-thimerosal flu vaccines exist, I think only non-thim vaccines should be given to pregnant women.  I do not think they should have to ask for non-thimersoal vaccines.  Producers of vaccines can be given time to increase their stock of non-thim vaccines.  


Edited by purslaine - 6/14/12 at 12:00pm
post #25 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post
Given that non-thimerosal flu vaccines exist, I think only non-thim vaccines should be given to pregnant women.  I do not think they should have to ask for non-thimersoal vaccines.  

I totally agree. Unfortunately, the U.S. government has refused to state a preference for infants, children, and pregnant women to receive mercury free vaccines.

post #26 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by ma2two View Post

I totally agree. Unfortunately, the U.S. government has refused to state a preference for infants, children, and pregnant women to receive mercury free vaccines.

 

I knew nothing about thimerosal when I got a flu shot in 2009 when I was pregnant with my second.  I have no idea if it contained thimerosal or not, and the doc never said anything about it.

post #27 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by ma2two View Post

I totally agree. Unfortunately, the U.S. government has refused to state a preference for infants, children, and pregnant women to receive mercury free vaccines.

 

I don't think this is a fair or true statement about US government agency opinions on thimerosol. The FDA has guidelines on thimerosol in vaccines (http://www.fda.gov/BiologicsBloodVaccines/SafetyAvailability/VaccineSafety/UCM096228) they ran a safety study in 1999: 

 

 

 

Quote:

FDA has been actively addressing the issue of thimerosal as a preservative in vaccines. Under the FDA Modernization Act (FDAMA) of 1997, the FDA conducted a comprehensive review of the use of thimerosal in childhood vaccines. Conducted in 1999, this review found no evidence of harm from the use of thimerosal as a vaccine preservative, other than local hypersensitivity reactions (Ball et al. 2001).

 

 

despite the lack of any evidence of danger in that review, the FDA still recommended that it be removed/reduced in all vaccines in 1999 "just in case" they had missed something: 

 

 

 

Quote:
As a precautionary measure, the Public Health Service (including the FDA, National Institutes of Health (NIH), Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics issued two Joint Statements, urging vaccine manufacturers to reduce or eliminate thimerosal in vaccines as soon as possible (CDC 1999) and (CDC 2000).

 

That link has a discussion about the effectiveness of that recommendation, and there is no thimerosol in almost all routinely recommended childhood vaccinations in 2012 (table at that link with actual thimerosol content of all of them - it's also interesting to me that is says in that table that many forumulations never had any thimerosol...). 

 

They also say at this link that: 

 

 

 

Quote:
The FDA is continuing its efforts to reduce the exposure of infants, children, and pregnant women to mercury from various sources. Discussions with the manufacturers of influenza virus vaccines (which are now routinely recommended for pregnant women and children 6-23 months of age) regarding their capacity to potentially increase the supply of thimerosal-reduced and thimerosal-free presentations are ongoing.
post #28 of 126
Sorry double post. Mothering.com is slow for me today.
post #29 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post
I don't think this is a fair or true statement about US government agency opinions on thimerosol. 

Perhaps I should have specified flu shots when I wrote, "the U.S. government has refused to state a preference for infants, children, and pregnant women to receive mercury free vaccines."

 

This is from 

Prevention and Control of Influenza with Vaccines

Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), 2010

 

 

(Under the heading, Pregnant and Postpartum Women)

"No preference is indicated for use of TIV that does not contain thimerosal as a preservative"

 

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr5908a1.htm


Edited by ma2two - 6/16/12 at 11:36am
post #30 of 126

OK, but the FDA say (from my previous post)

 

 

 

Quote:
The FDA is continuing its efforts to reduce the exposure of infants, children, and pregnant women to mercury from various sources. Discussions with the manufacturers of influenza virus vaccines (which are now routinely recommended for pregnant women and children 6-23 months of age) regarding their capacity to potentially increase the supply of thimerosal-reduced and thimerosal-free presentations are ongoing.

 

And in other places in that link you shared I found: 

 

 

 

 

Quote:
The U.S. Public Health Service and other organizations have recommended that efforts be made to eliminate or reduce the thimerosal content in vaccines as part of a strategy to reduce mercury exposures from all sources

 

 

 

Quote:
ACIP and other federal agencies and professional medical organizations continue to support efforts to provide thimerosal-preservative--free vaccine options.

 

(ACIP = Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, to the CDC)

 

 And

 

 

 

Quote:
The benefits of influenza vaccination for all recommended groups, including pregnant women and young children, outweigh concerns on the basis of a theoretic risk from thimerosal exposure through vaccination. The risks for severe illness from influenza virus infection are elevated among both young children and pregnant women, and vaccination has been demonstrated to reduce the risk for severe influenza illness and subsequent medical complications. In contrast, no harm from exposure to vaccine containing thimerosal preservative has been demonstrated.

 

(they provide some citations to the last statement elsewhere in the document).

 

For example

 

 

Quote:
An analysis of VAERS reports identified no difference in the safety profile of preservative-containing compared with preservative-free TIV vaccines in infants aged 6--23 months.
 

 

 

Some of the studies they cite: 

Rosenberg M, Sparks R, McMahon A, et al. Serious adverse events rarely reported after trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine (TIV) in children 6--23 months of age. Vaccine 2009;27:4278--83.)

 

McMahon AW, Iskander JK, Haber P, et al. Inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV) in children <2 years of age: examination of selected adverse events reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) after thimerosal-free or thimerosal-containing vaccine. Vaccine 2008;26:427--9.

 

Zheng W, Dreskin SC. Thimerosal in influenza vaccine: an immediate hypersensitivity reaction. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol 2007;99:574--5.

post #31 of 126
Quote:

Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post
 

 

OK, but the FDA say (from my previous post) "The FDA is continuing its efforts to reduce the exposure of infants, children, and pregnant women to mercury from various sources. Discussions with the manufacturers of influenza virus vaccines (which are now routinely recommended for pregnant women and children 6-23 months of age) regarding their capacity to potentially increase the supply of thimerosal-reduced and thimerosal-free presentations are ongoing."

 

 

 

 

And in other places in that link you shared I found: "The U.S. Public Health Service and other organizations have recommended that efforts be made to eliminate or reduce the thimerosal content in vaccines as part of a strategy to reduce mercury exposures from all sources"

 

 

 

 

"ACIP and other federal agencies and professional medical organizations continue to support efforts to provide thimerosal-preservative--free vaccine options."

 

 

 

(ACIP = Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, to the CDC)

 

 

 

 

Government officials promise--or appear to promise--many things.  Most people know better than to believe them.

post #32 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taximom5 View Post

Government officials promise--or appear to promise--many things.  Most people know better than to believe them.

So true, but they haven't even promised to state a preference in the future for pregnant women to receive mercury-free flu shots. 

post #33 of 126
Thread Starter 

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/researchers-urge-the-removal-of-mercury-from-flu-shots-117737828.html

 

And even more on thimerosal.  Scroll on through it for some interesting links.

post #34 of 126

That article claims yet again that "most" flu shots contain thimerosol. But the CDC page shows that only 30% of the forumulations (multi-dose vials only) include thimerosol:  http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/vaccines.htm

 

I have heard again and again that it's these multi-dose vials which are most often used, but with no data to back that up. So the question I have is - how can we find actual data on which flu shots are most often used? Anyone (in the US) up for calling Walgreens to ask them which they sell most often. That's not necessarilly unbiased, but it'd be a start...

 

 Before I get into the studies linked in the press release (from the "Coalition for Mercury Free Drugs"), a reminder of the thimerosol content in multi-vial flu shots- we're talking about 25 mcg Hcg per flu shot dose (also here: http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/vaccines.htm). No other pediatric vaccination currently licensed contains thimerosol, neither do single dose flu shots.

 

 For even a newborn ~3 kg (6.6 lb) baby, this would be 8 mcg Hg/kg for a flu shot from a multi-dose vial. For a fetus inside a pregnant woman, the thimerosol will be processed by the pregnant woman's body before reaching the placenta. I do no know what fraction of it will cross the placenta to the fetus, but I imagine it's significantly lower than this. 

 

 The article lists three studies which show that thimerosol causes neurological damage in infants

 

1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21225508

 

Injects baby rats with thimerosol at a dose of either 12 mcg Hg/kg or 240 mcg Hg/kg at age 7, 9, 11 and 15 days (the lower dose aimed at mimicking content in flu vaccines, and the schedule "similar" to infant immunization schemes, but recall only flu shots contain thimerosol now, and at 8 mcg Hg/kg for a 6.6 lb newborn, dropping in larger babies, so at most human infant would get one shot at 8 mcgHg/kg). Control rats had saline injections. The poor baby rats are then killed ("sacrificed") at age 8 weeks, their brains are removed, weighed and examined under a microscope. There were 10 rats in each group (5 boys, 5 girls) - so 30 rats total. This makes me glad to be a physical scientist! ;) 

 

Anyway, they see no statistically significant effect of brain weight from the thimerosol, although male rats with the 240 mcg Hg/kg dose (note 30 times the content of a flu shot given to a 6lb baby) had 3% larger brains (but a small sample). Their inspection of the brains do show some differences between the control sample and those having had the thimerosol injections, particularly in the male rats. They see clear evidence for larger effects in the large dose. 

 

My conclusion: Doesn't take long for a baby to double it's weight and non-thimerosol containing flu shots are available. So if you want to get your baby a flu shot either (a) wait until they're a bit heavier so the mcg Hg/kg is much lower, or (b) request the thimerosol free flu vaccines which make up 70% of the choices available to purchase.... Otherwise this study has little relevence to the current vaccination schedule. 

 

2. http://journals.lww.com/mecpsychiatry/Fulltext/2011/01000/Study_of_some_biomarkers_in_hair_of_children_with.2.aspx?WT.mc_id=HPxADx20100319xMP

 

A study of hair samples from 32 autistic children and 32 controls. They found on average more lead and copper, and less mercury and zinc in the hair of the autistic children than the controls. The difference is marginally statistically significant in my assessment. There was no discussion of the vaccination status of either group. 

 

Do I not understand? This appears to demonstrate that autistic children have less mercury in their bodies than non-autistic children, so I can't quite grasp the link with thimerosol in immunizations. Also much more mercury is ingested from environmental sources than is found in thimerosol in vaccines. 

 

3. http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.3109/1547691X.2010.545086

 

I have access only to the abstract which says: 

 

 

Quote:
Autism could result from more than one cause, with different manifestations in different individuals that share common symptoms. Documented causes of autism include genetic mutations and/or deletions, viral infections, and encephalitis following vaccination. Therefore, autism is the result of genetic defects and/or inflammation of the brain. The inflammation could be caused by a defective placenta, immature blood-brain barrier, the immune response of the mother to infection while pregnant, a premature birth, encephalitis in the child after birth, or a toxic environment.

 


 So they certainly don't cite thimerosol in vaccines as a main cause - although that could be a small part of the "toxic environment". But as I said (reference here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1490425) daily ingestion of mercury from environmental sources dwarfs the content of thimerosol in multi-dose vial flu vaccines. 

 

 I'm not sure what other posters on this thread want to happen here. The government agencies say they're encouraging the removal of thimerosol. If you don't believe them that's your choice, but I don't know what else they can do.... Many/most vaccines now do not have it, and studies show that at the low doses of the remaining shots the effects are quite small. 

post #35 of 126
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

 

 

 I'm not sure what other posters on this thread want to happen here. The government agencies say they're encouraging the removal of thimerosol. If you don't believe them that's your choice, but I don't know what else they can do.... Many/most vaccines now do not have it, and studies show that at the low doses of the remaining shots the effects are quite small. 

Personally, I would like it to be against regulations to give a thimerosal containing shot to pregnant women.  

 

I think having thimerosal-free shots are a good thing, I think encouraging is a good thing - but neither take it far enough.  I don't think the average consumer knows about the possible dangers of thimerosal, and I think even less know to ask for a thimerosal-free flu shot.  I could be wrong - but even if one person does not know to ask, that is wrong.   The burden of asking should not be placed on a pregnant women and her fetus - it is pretty unethical IMHO.  Oh, you did not know thimerosal was in some flu vaccines and there is some evidence that might be harmful?  Too bad for you.


Edited by purslaine - 6/19/12 at 6:24am
post #36 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

I have heard again and again that it's these multi-dose vials which are most often used, but with no data to back that up. So the question I have is - how can we find actual data on which flu shots are most often used?

You can email the CDC and ask. I remember someone did a few years ago, and the answer was that a majority of the available flu shot doses were from multi-dose vials. But I don't remember where I can find that. So you can email them and get the information again, and it will be updated. Be sure to ask what percentage of flu shot doses contain mercury, not flu vaccine doses, because that would include FluMist, which pregnant women cannot get.

post #37 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

I'm not sure what other posters on this thread want to happen here. The government agencies say they're encouraging the removal of thimerosol. If you don't believe them that's your choice, but I don't know what else they can do.... Many/most vaccines now do not have it, and studies show that at the low doses of the remaining shots the effects are quite small. 

I want the CDC to state a preference for pregnant women to receive mercury-free flu shots. If that happened, it would be reported in the media, and pregnant women would know to ask for them. If the CDC stated a preference for pregnant women to receive mercury-free flu shots, pharmacies and doctors offices would be much more likely to give pregnant women mercury-free flu shots.

post #38 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

A study of hair samples from 32 autistic children and 32 controls. They found on average more lead and copper, and less mercury and zinc in the hair of the autistic children than the controls. The difference is marginally statistically significant in my assessment. There was no discussion of the vaccination status of either group. 

 

Do I not understand? This appears to demonstrate that autistic children have less mercury in their bodies than non-autistic children, so I can't quite grasp the link with thimerosol in immunizations. Also much more mercury is ingested from environmental sources than is found in thimerosol in vaccines. 

 

 

It is my understanding that some people cannot excrete mercury from their bodies well, which is why the autistic children in the group don't have as much in their hair - it's not being excreted.

post #39 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bokonon View Post
It is my understanding that some people cannot excrete mercury from their bodies well, which is why the autistic children in the group don't have as much in their hair - it's not being excreted.

Exactly. This is widely known.

post #40 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

That article claims yet again that "most" flu shots contain thimerosol. But the CDC page shows that only 30% of the forumulations (multi-dose vials only) include thimerosol:  http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/vaccines.htm

 

I have heard again and again that it's these multi-dose vials which are most often used, but with no data to back that up. So the question I have is - how can we find actual data on which flu shots are most often used? Anyone (in the US) up for calling Walgreens to ask them which they sell most often. That's not necessarilly unbiased, but it'd be a start...

 

 Before I get into the studies linked in the press release (from the "Coalition for Mercury Free Drugs"), a reminder of the thimerosol content in multi-vial flu shots- we're talking about 25 mcg Hcg per flu shot dose (also here: http://www.cdc.gov/flu/protect/vaccine/vaccines.htm). No other pediatric vaccination currently licensed contains thimerosol, neither do single dose flu shots.

 

 For even a newborn ~3 kg (6.6 lb) baby, this would be 8 mcg Hg/kg for a flu shot from a multi-dose vial. For a fetus inside a pregnant woman, the thimerosol will be processed by the pregnant woman's body before reaching the placenta. I do no know what fraction of it will cross the placenta to the fetus, but I imagine it's significantly lower than this. 

 

 The article lists three studies which show that thimerosol causes neurological damage in infants

 

1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21225508

 

Injects baby rats with thimerosol at a dose of either 12 mcg Hg/kg or 240 mcg Hg/kg at age 7, 9, 11 and 15 days (the lower dose aimed at mimicking content in flu vaccines, and the schedule "similar" to infant immunization schemes, but recall only flu shots contain thimerosol now, and at 8 mcg Hg/kg for a 6.6 lb newborn, dropping in larger babies, so at most human infant would get one shot at 8 mcgHg/kg). Control rats had saline injections. The poor baby rats are then killed ("sacrificed") at age 8 weeks, their brains are removed, weighed and examined under a microscope. There were 10 rats in each group (5 boys, 5 girls) - so 30 rats total. This makes me glad to be a physical scientist! ;) 

 

Anyway, they see no statistically significant effect of brain weight from the thimerosol, although male rats with the 240 mcg Hg/kg dose (note 30 times the content of a flu shot given to a 6lb baby) had 3% larger brains (but a small sample). Their inspection of the brains do show some differences between the control sample and those having had the thimerosol injections, particularly in the male rats. They see clear evidence for larger effects in the large dose. 

 

My conclusion: Doesn't take long for a baby to double it's weight and non-thimerosol containing flu shots are available. So if you want to get your baby a flu shot either (a) wait until they're a bit heavier so the mcg Hg/kg is much lower, or (b) request the thimerosol free flu vaccines which make up 70% of the choices available to purchase.... Otherwise this study has little relevence to the current vaccination schedule. 

 

2. http://journals.lww.com/mecpsychiatry/Fulltext/2011/01000/Study_of_some_biomarkers_in_hair_of_children_with.2.aspx?WT.mc_id=HPxADx20100319xMP

 

A study of hair samples from 32 autistic children and 32 controls. They found on average more lead and copper, and less mercury and zinc in the hair of the autistic children than the controls. The difference is marginally statistically significant in my assessment. There was no discussion of the vaccination status of either group. 

 

Do I not understand? This appears to demonstrate that autistic children have less mercury in their bodies than non-autistic children, so I can't quite grasp the link with thimerosol in immunizations. Also much more mercury is ingested from environmental sources than is found in thimerosol in vaccines. 

 

3. http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.3109/1547691X.2010.545086

 

I have access only to the abstract which says: 

 

 

 


 So they certainly don't cite thimerosol in vaccines as a main cause - although that could be a small part of the "toxic environment". But as I said (reference here: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1490425) daily ingestion of mercury from environmental sources dwarfs the content of thimerosol in multi-dose vial flu vaccines. 

 

 I'm not sure what other posters on this thread want to happen here. The government agencies say they're encouraging the removal of thimerosol. If you don't believe them that's your choice, but I don't know what else they can do.... Many/most vaccines now do not have it, and studies show that at the low doses of the remaining shots the effects are quite small. 

I'm wondering why you would think that children who have less mercury in their hair would therefore have less mercury in their bodies.  If they have, for whatever reason, been unable to properly excrete it, it wouldn't be in their hair, or in their urine.  It would likely have crossed the blood-brain barrier, which is a big problem with mercury poisoning.

 

As for the government agencies saying that they are encouraging the removal of thimerosal--you think it's a CHOICE not to believe this?  When the government first requested the removal of thimerosal from pediatric vaccines 13 years ago?  You don't know what else they can do, besides allow routine vaccination of pregnant women and infants with thimerosal-preserved flu shots?

 

Really?

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