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Found you in quest of an answer to the vaccination question

post #1 of 65
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone!  My wife, Lena and I, Shard, are expecting a son in a couple months and I still don't know what to do about vaccinating.  I've been researching vaccines for the last 5 months.  So much good information on here!

 

It all started with a book, "Vaccination is not Immunization" - by Tim O'Shea.  Tim gave Lena a copy of his book and as soon as she finished it she made me read it and we've bee in turmoil ever since.  My problem is that I can't choose a side.  Most of the information against vaccines seem valid and concerning, but then I have doctors, and usually intelligent people, that just react to me like I'm stupid for even questioning it.  Like level headed parents saying their VACCINATED kid most likely caught whooping cough "from an unvaccinated child in a public playground."    

 

It just seems like such an emotionally charged subject because parents on both sides of the debate have had direct traumatic experience from either vaccinating, or deciding not to vaccinate.  I need verifiable peer reviewed studies that shows evidence one way or the other.  So please help me debate about this subject, because debate is the best way for me to learn! :D

post #2 of 65

Hi - and welcome to MDC.

 

I will start with one of my favourites, and maybe someone will come on and be "you're wrong!"so you can get both sides.

 

Hep B is associated with a increase in autism if given to newborn infant males. 

 

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21058170

 

"Boys vaccinated as neonates had threefold greater odds for autism diagnosis compared to boys never vaccinated or vaccinated after the first month of life."

 

The only newborns who need a Hep. B shot are those whose mothers have Hep. B.  In everyone else it is not medically necessary and carries too much of a risk.

 

I would research rota, pertussis and Hep B first as they pertain to newborns.  Your wife might want to research pertussis as she will undoubtably be offered a booster during her pregnancy or upon delivery.  You might be as well.

post #3 of 65

We give the dtap to newborns, and that's all. We were super on the fence, but we really want to protect against pertussis and tetanus (when toddler age). We delay everything else until age two and then have decided to get on schedule. Of course, a few vaccinations are skipped because of the delay. 

post #4 of 65
There's a couple of recent independent literature reviews on vaccine safety and effectiveness. Ones for the Cohcrane group. I'll post the links when I get back to my computer (prob tuesday). But the bottom line of both is that overall the research shows vaccines are safe and effective (even given small number if studies which suggest some correlations). The vast majority of studies are null for correlation between vaccines and anything except a reduction in the chance of catching vaccine preventable diseases.

There's a lot of scary stuff online (and in books). Please read skeptically, and don't be scared by the vaccine ingredient lists. Most of that stuff is there for a reason and in amounts so tiny that it will be dwarfed by your child's environmental exposure (which is perhaps the real scary thing!).

I'll just end by saying that, incase its not obvious to you, choosing to not vaccinate does not need to be considered part of natural parenting. Much of the science comes down in favor of lots of natural parenting issues, like breast feeding, cosleeping, a reduction in medical intervention in birth etc. There are excellent environmental reasons for cloth diapers, eating local organic food etc. Science still comes down in favour of vaccinating. smile.gif

Anyway good luck in your decision. smile.gif
post #5 of 65
Thread Starter 

Thanks, please do.  I am having the hardest time finding evidence FOR vaccines.  There is another thread here, trying to dig up that side of the discussion too, that I am keeping up on as well.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

There's a couple of recent independent literature reviews on vaccine safety and effectiveness. Ones for the Cohcrane group. I'll post the links when I get back to my computer (prob tuesday). But the bottom line of both is that overall the research shows vaccines are safe and effective (even given small number if studies which suggest some correlations). The vast majority of studies are null for correlation between vaccines and anything except a reduction in the chance of catching vaccine preventable diseases.
There's a lot of scary stuff online (and in books). Please read skeptically, and don't be scared by the vaccine ingredient lists. Most of that stuff is there for a reason and in amounts so tiny that it will be dwarfed by your child's environmental exposure (which is perhaps the real scary thing!).
I'll just end by saying that, incase its not obvious to you, choosing to not vaccinate does not need to be considered part of natural parenting. Much of the science comes down in favor of lots of natural parenting issues, like breast feeding, cosleeping, a reduction in medical intervention in birth etc. There are excellent environmental reasons for cloth diapers, eating local organic food etc. Science still comes down in favour of vaccinating. smile.gif
Anyway good luck in your decision. smile.gif
post #6 of 65

I agree with Prosciencemum in the need for scepticism in looking for credible information. Nothing (including vaccinating as well as not vaccinating) is 100% safe, but the huge majority of science looking at large numbers comes down squarely on the side of vaccinating to prevent illness, disability and death.  Ultimately the decision is yours of course; however be aware that "not deciding" is also deciding. 

Thrilled to answer questions on individual vaccines/illnesses if you like.

Good luck!

post #7 of 65
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

 

Hep B is associated with a increase in autism if given to newborn infant males. 

 

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21058170

 

"Boys vaccinated as neonates had threefold greater odds for autism diagnosis compared to boys never vaccinated or vaccinated after the first month of life."

 

Thanks for helping me debate :D.  I've actually started index cards with a different vaccine on the back of each one with things that I find out about each, which I will cross out if they are disproved.  So this helps me on my hep b card.  That study if from 2010 I think but it's only done on children born before 1999.

 

Quote:
The rationale for birth year restriction is to control
for variations in exposures to vaccine mercury (Hg) content.

 

In 1999 the FDA called for reductions or removals in mercury content because they found the hep b vaccine to contain 40 TIMES!  the acceptable amount of mercury/body weight.  So I wonder how much current Hep B shots have reduced their mercury content to now, as mercury seems to be the most correlated thing to autism.  This doesn't really have any weight if hep b vaccines no longer use mercury.  

post #8 of 65

I am not sure it was the mercury that caused the rise in autism.  Do you have a link?  Where did you get the quote "the rationale for birth year restriction…..".  I took a look over the abstract and it was not there.

 

 

In any event - I have 3 kids.  The oldest is almost 17.  When he was a baby, Hep B was related to an increase in autism (3 fold, it turns out, in newborn males)  He was also one of the last kids given DPT - they switched over to DTaP when he was around 2, turns out DTaP was/is safer.  The point of this story is we learn more about vaccine safety all the time.  Early rotavirus vaccines were abandoned as they caused overly high rates of intussuseption.   http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/rotavirus/vac-rotashield-historical.htm   Science and what is seen as safe is changing all the time.  A vaccine being "safe" isn't good enough, in my opinion, to inject it into a child - it must also serve a need.  I don't give my kids any medicine for kicks - it is to serve a need.  There is no need for newborns to receive the Hep B shot at birth unless their mother has Hep. B


Edited by kathymuggle - 10/2/12 at 5:40am
post #9 of 65

One more - are you American?

 

I put that out there as you expressed concern around thimerosal and vaccines.  

 

If you are Canadian, you might be interested to know that our Hep B  and flu vaccines do contain thimerosal (grrr…..)

http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/im/q_a_thimerosal-eng.php. Newborns here are not routinely given Hep B at birth, though, which is a good thing in my opinion.

 

If you are anything but American, you need to double check the vaccine formulations where you live.  

post #10 of 65

shardfilterbox - a good resource for evidence based health care studies is the Cochrane Collaboration (full disclosure a friend of mine works for them - although her research has nothing at all to do with vaccines, but floor choices in health care facilities). They do systematic reviews of literature studies to produce reports giving the best evidence based recommendations they can. You can search all their systematic reviews via their website: http://www.cochrane.org/cochrane-reviews

 

I think this is the one I remember reading - a study of the safety and efficacy of the MMR vaccine: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD004407.pub3/abstract

 

The last line of the summary of this for example says: 

 

 

Quote:

Exposure to the MMR vaccine was unlikely to be associated with autism, asthma, leukaemia, hay fever, type 1 diabetes, gait disturbance, Crohn's disease, demyelinating diseases, bacterial or viral infections.

 

 

But if you search their database on vaccines you can find a bunch of systematic reviews on different vaccines. 

post #11 of 65

You might also be interested in the free online course Paul Offit gives - at least to hear his point of view. He discusses the alternate schedules for vaccination in one of the videos, which would probably be of the most interest to you. There's another thread here with some summaries of the videos from this course I watched over the summer, but they're starting to run it again soon too. 

post #12 of 65

And here's the other link I mentioned: http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=13164

 

From this thread: http://www.mothering.com/community/t/1363710/adverse-effects-of-vaccines-evidence-and-causality

 

The main summary of this one: 

 

 

 

Quote:
while no vaccine is 100 percent safe, very few adverse events are shown to be caused by vaccines. In addition, the evidence shows that vaccines do not cause several conditions. For example, the MMR vaccine is not associated with autism or childhood diabetes. Also, the DTaP vaccine is not associated with diabetes and the influenza vaccine given as a shot does not exacerbate asthma.

 

Hope it helps. The other trick is to google "something that worries your about vaccines" + skeptical (e.g. "hep b vaccine causes autism skeptical) to get the other side of the argument - often a blog post with a critical review of the study being discussed by anti-vaccination groups.  

 

In the example I gave I found this blog article: http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2012/07/1-hepatitis-b-vaccination-of-male-neonates-and-autism-diagnosis-nhis-1997-2002-2010.html which discusses the small sample size (only 9/33 of the autistic children in the sample had been given the Hep B vaccine, and many were born well before it was introduced as a newborn vaccines for example) and other problems with the study kathymuggle links. 

 

They also make a good point about looking for replication. This paper was published in 2010, and if it was a major effect you'd expect someone to have repeated it by now.... (the blog article I linked was dated July 2012). 

post #13 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

 

They also make a good point about looking for replication. This paper was published in 2010, and if it was a major effect you'd expect someone to have repeated it by now.... (the blog article I linked was dated July 2012). 

Not necessarily.  It takes a while (years) to do a study…I would not expect a new study out this early after 2010.  We also have not seen any studies that refute the study I quoted.  (Perhaps due to it being early days - or perhaps because the study is correct - we simply do not know yet). 

post #14 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

Not necessarily.  It takes a while (years) to do a study…I would not expect a new study out this early after 2010.  We also have not seen any studies that refute the study I quoted.  (Perhaps due to it being early days - or perhaps because the study is correct - we simply do not know yet). 

 

The blog article I posted raises several good questions about the methodology and statistical significance of the study.

post #15 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

 

The blog article I posted raises several good questions about the methodology and statistical significance of the study.

I read the blog.

 

I thought the sample size point was legit.

 

I thought the fact that some kids were vaccinated before Hep B was a standard  newborn vaccine was moot.  Who cares unless the formula had changed while the study was being done?    

 

Yes, I would like to see more and bigger studies on the issue. The study points more to a possibility or suspicion.  The question then becomes - what does one do without a huge body of solid evidence?  I think looking at the VPD and risk factors for the VPD are a good place to start.  Newborns have no or almost no risk factors for Hep B unless their mother is Hep. B positive. It is reasonably easy to figure out if your newborn is at risk of Hep. B.   Why take a possible risk for no gain?


Edited by kathymuggle - 10/2/12 at 7:37am
post #16 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

You might also be interested in the free online course Paul Offit gives - at least to hear his point of view. He discusses the alternate schedules for vaccination in one of the videos, which would probably be of the most interest to you. There's another thread here with some summaries of the videos from this course I watched over the summer, but they're starting to run it again soon too. 

Just be aware that Dr Offit appears not to have a basic grasp of the vaccine issue, and you will be subjecting yourself to vaccine propaganda. Here is a rebuttal of one of his articles on thimerosal in vaccines and autism by Dr Paul King, PhD, MS,BA:

 

Rebuttal to: "Conventional wisdom must conquer medical sensationalism", the article was written in 2005, so some information maybe outdated.

post #17 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirzam View Post

Just be aware that Dr Offit appears not to have a basic grasp of the vaccine issue, and you will be subjecting yourself to vaccine propaganda. Here is a rebuttal of one of his articles on thimerosal in vaccines and autism by Dr Paul King, PhD, MS,BA:

 

Rebuttal to: "Conventional wisdom must conquer medical sensationalism", the article was written in 2005, so some information maybe outdated.

 

Mirzam, you keep posting great stuff!  notes.gif  This is another one that deserves its own thread.

post #18 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taximom5 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirzam View Post

Just be aware that Dr Offit appears not to have a basic grasp of the vaccine issue, and you will be subjecting yourself to vaccine propaganda. Here is a rebuttal of one of his articles on thimerosal in vaccines and autism by Dr Paul King, PhD, MS,BA:

 

Rebuttal to: "Conventional wisdom must conquer medical sensationalism", the article was written in 2005, so some information maybe outdated.

 

Mirzam, you keep posting great stuff!  notes.gif  This is another one that deserves its own thread.

I obviously have too much time on my hands now the kids are back at school! whistling.gif

post #19 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirzam View Post

Just be aware that Dr Offit appears not to have a basic grasp of the vaccine issue

 

?

 

He's an experienced researcher who has worked on developing vaccines. I think he understands vaccines. 

 

Wikipedia bio of Paul Offit here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Offit

post #20 of 65
Quote:
Originally Posted by prosciencemum View Post

?

 

He's an experienced researcher who has worked on developing vaccines. I think he understands vaccines. 

 

Wikipedia bio of Paul Offit here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Offit

 

Age of Autism Awards 2010: Dr Paul Offit, Denialist of the Decade

 

Paul Offit and the Original Sin

 

Paul Offit autism denier:

 

 

 

Quote:
“It's not an actual epidemic. In the mid-1990s, the definition of autism was broadened to what is now called autism spectrum disorder. Much milder parts of the spectrum -- problems with speech, social interaction -- were brought into the spectrum. We also have more awareness, so we see it more often. And there is a financial impetus to include children in the wider definition so that their treatment will be covered by insurance. People say if you took the current criteria and went back 50 years, you'd see about as many children with autism then.”(my emphasis)

 

 

 

Quote:

AOL Health: Do you believe that there is a cure for autism?

Offit: No. Children who show signs of autism sometimes can get better between 2 and 5, but it probably has nothing to do with the biomedical treatments -- they simply improve with time.

 

Move along, everyone, nothing to see here, Offit the Prophet has spoken. Interestingly, the question didn’t mention biomedical treatments, but Offit slammed the door on them anyway? No, no chance for recovery. And, oh, by the way, everything that can be invented already has, and every innovation in medicine to help people get better is already here.

I could go on and on and on.....

 

ETA: here is an interesting comment from the second article about Dr Offit's wiki bio you posted a link to:

 

 

 

 

Quote:

The "sceptics" try to hide the truth about Offit on Wikipedia. See how they removed important facts. How will it end?


(cur | prev) 11:34, 16 December 2011‎ 213.112.195.185 (talk)‎ (20,212 bytes) (ACSH is a very successfull lobby-organizastion and it is important for the public to know. Why do you want to hide that??) (undo)
(cur | prev) 22:05, 15 December 2011‎ MastCell (talk | contribs)‎ (20,059 bytes) (agree with GrahamColm; while this may be notable, it's not notable enough for the lead) (undo)
(cur | prev) 21:24, 15 December 2011‎ 213.112.193.210 (talk)‎ (20,211 bytes) (Undid revision 466057011 by GrahamColm (talk)) (undo)
(cur | prev) 21:12, 15 December 2011‎ GrahamColm (talk | contribs)‎ (20,059 bytes) (Reverted good faith edits by 213.112.193.210 (talk): See WP:MOS and not sure of WP:WEIGHT. (TW)) (undo)

 

 

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